State of New Jersey
Executive Order #14

Governor Christine Todd Whitman

WHEREAS, the institutions of higher education are one of the most valuable and underutilized resources in the State; and

WHEREAS, the elimination of State oversight and its accompanying bureaucracy will serve to unleash the creativity and innovation of these institutions; and

WHEREAS, the Governor has proposed the elimination of the Department of Higher Education as of July 1, 1994 and the shifting of its core functions to other areas of State government and to the institutions themselves; and

WHEREAS, implementation of the proposal must provide that student aid programs be not only preserved but also strengthened and that the State continue to foster and encourage programs to promote diversity and accessibility; and

WHEREAS, higher education must continue to be affordable for students; and

WHEREAS, any legislation or executive order to accomplish these objectives should be proposed with the active participation of the entire higher education community;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, CHRISTINE TODD WHITMAN, Governor of the State of New Jersey, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and by the Statutes of this State, do hereby ORDER and DIRECT:

1. The Advisory Panel on Higher Education Restructuring is hereby established as set forth in this Order. The Advisory Panel shall consist of fifteen (15) members as follows:

a. Thirteen (13) members, including the chair and vice chair, appointed by the Governor, at least four of whom shall be presidents of higher education institutions in the State, and two of whom shall be members of the State Board of Higher Education;

b. One (1) member appointed by the President of the Senate;

c. One (1) member appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly.

2. The Advisory Panel shall assist the Governor in proposing legislation to implement the restructuring of the system of higher education based upon the objectives set forth below.

3. The proposed legislation should address the following objectives:

a. Institutions of higher education must be given maximum autonomy with a minimum of bureaucratic controls in order to meet the specific needs of their students.

b. Higher education must be affordable and accessible.

c. Political influences must not intrude into the decision-making process.

d. The system must avoid administrative overlap and duplication.

4. The proposed legislation should provide for the elimination of the Department of Higher Education with the core functions of the department being shifted to the appropriate entities, including but not limited to:

a. A coordinating council consisting of the presidents of each public or private institution of higher education, which council would be responsible for the coordination of programs among the various institutions; and

b. A commission for higher education, which commission would be responsible for long range planning for higher education.

5. The Advisory Panel shall present its recommendations on or before May 2, 1994.

6. The Advisory Panel is authorized to call upon any department, offices or agency of State government to provide such information, resources or other assistance deemed necessary to discharge its responsibilities under this Order. Each department, officer, division and agency of this State is hereby required to cooperate with the Advisory Panel and to furnish it with such information, personnel and assistance as is necessary to accomplish the purposes of this Order.

7. This Order shall take effect immediately.

GIVEN, under my hand and seal
this 30th day of March in the Year
of Our Lord, One Thousand Nine
Hundred and Ninety Four, and of the
Independence of the United States,
the Two Hundred and Eighteenth.

Christine Todd Whitman


Peter Verniero
Chief Counsel to the Governor