One of Gov. Bill Haslam’s top education-related legislative priorities received a favorable vote from a House committee on Tuesday.
The House Administration and Planning subcommittee unanimously approved Haslam’s Focus on College and University Success Act plan.
The effort seeks to create independent boards for six state universities governed by the Tennessee Board of Regents. The local boards would be allowed to set tuition, approve budgets and set their own priorities. The Board of Regents would continue to manage the state's network of 13 community colleges and 27 technical colleges.
Rep. Ryan Williams, R-Cottontown, and Mike Krause, who was representing Haslam’s administration, fielded a handful of questions from the committee as it considered the 37-page bill.
“It allows these six institutions the opportunity to run more autonomous than they are,” Williams said.
Although the plan has been criticized by some, including former Board of Regents Chancellor John Morgan, who resigned last month in protest of Haslam’s effort, no members of the subcommittee offered criticism of the legislation.