On Wednesday, April 25, the MSU Faculty Senate voted against the proposed Charles Koch Foundation-funded economic research center. The vote was nearly split, with 12 voting for and 13 voting against the research center. There was much debate surrounding the decision, as the acceptance would have brought with it association to the controversial Koch name in all resulting research publications.
The proposed funding would have allocated $5.7 million toward the center and the research it planned to house. The heavy debate centered on whether or not that research would have been directed by the Koch Foundation.
Previous grant money from the Koch Foundation has been used to support research funding for economic students and faculty for the past two years. Grants from the foundation will continue to fund research projects on campus.
The vote was conducted through writing names and vote on a piece of paper, rather than through the typical style of hand-raising in agreement or disagreement. Faculty Senate Chair Michael Babcock told the Bozeman Daily Chronicle that this vote in change style was so that the vote could be better documented.