Lawmakers Decide Against Docking MSU $500k For Labor Courses

Jun 13, 2014

State lawmakers have backed down from penalizing Michigan State University over controversial courses about organized labor.

As The Michigan Public Radio Network’s Jake Neher reports, the half-million dollar fine was taken out of a budget bill approved this week in the Legislature.

Lawmakers say public universities should not be in the business of encouraging labor disputes. And earlier this year, they said that’s exactly what a program hosted by M-S-U did.

David Bertram is a spokesperson for the university. He says legislators decided against the $500,000 fine after learning more about the program.

“As we’ve made the rounds and talked to a number of members, I think as we give them all information, I think there’s fewer concerns than were originally raised,” he says.

Bertram says the program consists of seminars for groups hoping to learn more about union organizing. It is not open to regular undergraduate or graduate students.