June 27, 2012
One day after the reinstatement of Teresa Sullivan as President of the University of Virginia and the grounds are a little steadier. However, local legislators are hinting we may see some action in the General Assembly next year to make sure a fiasco like what’s happened over the past two weeks doesn’t happen again.
“It was a pretty amazing day for the University of Virginia. I think it was a good day. We still have huge challenges ahead,” said Del. David Toscano (D) 57th District.
As the fanfare greets its newly reinstated President, there’s still some concern. All eyes are now on the Board of Visitors; a group many learned over the past weeks has tremendous influence.
“What will pass ultimately is very difficult to predict right now, but you will see some efforts to change some of the Board governance I believe in the next legislative session," said Del. Toscano.
Delegate Toscano has supported Sullivan’s reinstatement. He says we can expect action in the General Assembly the next go round, perhaps some statutory changes that will ultimately alter the makeup of the Board to make it more diverse.
“I'm only one person but I can tell you there are a lot of Representatives worried about what happened this time around,” said Del. Toscano.
That concern brings an opportunity for change. However, Delegate Toscano warns that there is no failsafe system.
Delegate Toscano says no matter what the General Assembly does or the Governor approves, that doesn’t mean something like this can’t happen again in Charlottesville.
Governor Bob McDonnell will soon exercise his own power and influence on the Board of Visitors. The terms for Rector Helen Dragas and Visitor Robert Hardie are both up this Sunday, July 1.
Two other members will leave their posts. McDonnell is expected to announce this week whether he will reappoint Dragas and Hardie and who will fill the rest of the open seats.