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Budget shortfalls reveal university turf battles

By Lynn Hatter

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wfsu/local-wfsu-974977.mp3

Tallahassee, FL – The Florida board of Governors oversees the state's 11 public universities. It's discussing how those schools should grow over the next five years. The universities have clashed over degree programs in each others backyards, and as Lynn Hatter reports, that's a problem that has not gone away.

One question universities face in planning their futures is where to establish new programs. Often those decisions collide with a other university with a program in the same area. That's led to turf battles between the state's higher education institutions. So board member Norman Tripp has a solution: put them in a room and let them fight it out.

"It's their problem, it's their issue, they're the ones who raise it when it comes up. So why don't we ask them to get in a room and come back and come back to us with a suggestion on how they see themselves governing this issue movingforward?"

The board wants to begin talks on changing its policy on the issue, but the last time that happened, it was met with push-back from university stakeholders. The board will take the issue up at its September meeting.