Remember when the Board of Regents promised to guarantee intellectual diversity through policy?
A number of legislators are accepting them at their word, but to paraphrase the words of Ronald Reagan, they’re also ‘trusting, but verifying:’ And the verification is coming in the form of House Bill 1087.
After two legislative hiccups last year, another bill to promote intellectual diversity on South Dakota campuses has been presented. According to the South Dakota legislature’s website, House Bill 1087 was filed on Jan. 25 and sent to the House Education Committee.
The bill has prominent backers in both the state’s House and Senate: Speaker of the House Steven Haugaard and House Majority Leader Lee Qualm are listed as co-sponsors of the bill.
Additionally, Senate Majority Leader Kris Langer and Senate President Pro Tempore Brock Greenfield are both listed as co-sponsors.
Last year, state lawmakers tried passing similar bills to no avail. The Argus Leader previously reported the failed bills were criticized for being unnecessary because of Board of Regents’ existing policy.
“We are very pleased that the Board of Regents has adopted the promotion of intellectual diversity as official policy for South Dakota universities,” she said. “We believe, however, that we must lock in these reforms by way of concrete steps toward implementation of the policy and via legislation.”