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Governor Dayton shows strong support for University of Minnesota

The top of the Minnesota capitol building

University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler responded to Governor Mark Dayton’s budget proposal released today:

“Governor Mark Dayton’s strong support of the University of Minnesota, demonstrated in his budget proposal, affirms his ongoing commitment to advancing the economic and social vitality of Minnesota. I am grateful for the Governor’s pledge to advance student success, increase access to healthcare across Minnesota, translate research for the state’s common good and maintain affordability for Minnesota’s students and families.

“At our five campuses across Minnesota, we power the state’s workforce by producing graduates who drive our state’s industries forward with their innovation and ingenuity. To quote Governor Dayton’s State of the State address, ‘If we invest in them now…our colleges and universities will produce the entrepreneurs, the ideas, the workers and the products to drive business and job growth throughout Minnesota for decades to come.’

“By many measures, the University is on an upward trajectory, and I’m eager to continue our partnership with the Minnesota Legislature to keep us on that path forward.

“On a separate note, my thoughts are with Governor Dayton and his family during this time of his cancer diagnosis. I join the University community in wishing him the best in the days to come.”

In total, the University’s biennial budget request includes $147.2 million in funding to support six priority projects. Governor Dayton’s budget proposal provides $96.8 million of that request, including:

Full funding ($68.2 million) for the core mission support initiative, which will allow the U of M to retain faculty and staff, maintain key programs, ensure campuses’ safe and reliable infrastructure and minimize tuition costs for Minnesota resident students by addressing inflationary costs of critical research, education and outreach activities via state investment and internal adjustments.

$2.6 million in funding to support the investing in student success request, which will advance the long-term success of Minnesota’s students by improving retention and graduation rates and by making college more affordable throughout the U of M system.

$8 million in funding to expand MnDRIVE, building upon the success of the state’s 2013 MnDRIVE (Minnesota’s Discovery, Research and InnoVation Economy) investment and expanding the partnership to include additional initiatives to solve Minnesota’s challenges in the areas of fighting cancer, strengthening communities, improving water quality and advancing data to drive the economy.

Full funding ($4 million) to advance NRRI applied research, strengthening the applied research activities at the Natural Resources Research Institute (NRRI), housed at the University of Minnesota Duluth campus. Funding will support research critical to the state: minerals, mining and water; energy and the environment; forest products and bioeconomy. Since its founding in 1983, the NRRI has received no increase in its base funding.

Full funding ($14 million) to restore health training and services. The University aims to restore funding for two initiatives formerly funded by UCare: Family Medicine and Community Health residencies, which train future family physicians for underserved communities and the Mobile Dental Clinic, which provides preventive and primary dental care statewide.

Find out more about the University’s legislative request at government-relations.umn.edu

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