Model Legislation: Higher Education Governance Transparency Act

The Higher Education Governance Transparency Act can help restore transparency and accountability to university governance. Public university governing boards exist to serve the people of their states. It should, therefore, be easy for the public to know what governing bodies are doing. University governance, however, isn’t always as transparent as it should be.

The Martin Center has developed model legislation that requires “governing boards of public higher education institutions to establish uniform standards to make the activities and decision-making processes of these boards more transparent.” The model legislation mandates public higher education boards to:

  1. Broadcast and record meetings

  2. Provide easy internet access to board contact information

  3. Provide adequate advance notice of meetings

  4. Conduct votes by roll-call

  5. Publish meeting minutes in a timely and accessible manner

  6. Hire an independent board staff member

  7. Provide time and ample notice of public comment periods

  8. Fully understand their roles and responsibilities

A state’s residents and taxpayers have a right to know how their public colleges and universities are being governed.