MATC in the news

Columbus SpeedwayThe MATC District Board has plans to purchase the 151 Speedway in Columbus for use as a training facility for emergency services students, reports The Wisconsin State Journal in an article published on line on May 1, 2015.

However, racers and the owner’s family have vowed to try to stop the sale of the property, which MATC has agreed to buy for $583,000. According to the article by reporter Dan Simmons, “Town of Columbus board chairman Eugene Damm said he doesn’t object to the sale but has some concerns that the land will become tax exempt because it will be owned by the college. A public hearing about the sale will be held May 11 before a regularly scheduled [Town of Columbus] board meeting.”

More than a month after MATC District Board Chair Carolyn Stoner issued a set of “Rules for Public Comment During Board Meetings” and Local 243 posted them for members to read, The Wisconsin State Journal reports that the instigator of the new rules may have been MATC President Jack E. Daniels. According to the article by Dan Simmons, published online at Madison.com this morning (Thursday, November 14, 2013): “…new MATC president Jack E. Daniels said he suggested the rules after attending his first meeting in September, noting they will bring about a more formal, businesslike atmosphere to match what he was accustomed to at previous jobs.” [emphasis added]

Simmons also reports that at least one former board member has spoken out about the changes:

Noel Radomski, whose two-term service on the board ended in July, sharply criticized the rules and said MATC, also known as Madison College, should be moving toward more openness and public disclosure, not less.

“The (rules) will limit, not encourage, the public’s participation in the sole decision-making body for the Madison Area Technical College District,” Radomski wrote in an email. “The public has the right, and the board has the responsibility, to encourage discussion at all public board meetings.”

If you wish to read the entire article by Simmons, you may click here.

Earlier today, the Wisconsin State Journal posted an editorial to its online sibling (Madison.com) that’s based on a recent editorial board interview with MATC’s new president, Jack E. Daniels.

In it, Daniels answers questions and concerns about such issues as slipping enrollment and building expansion, and says he is launching a strategic planning effort .

The editorial also notes that, “Daniels isn’t hung up on his institution’s name. Whether you call it MATC or Madison College, what’s important is that it fulfills its mission.”

You can read the entire editorial online. Please note that there is a paywall at Madison.com and you may encounter it if you access more than 10 articles a month.