Gov. Dayton and future U President Kaler meet

Dayton and Kaler discussed the University’s bonding request.

Sarah Nienaber

Two of MinnesotaâÄôs most influential men met Tuesday at the state Capitol.

The meeting between Gov. Mark Dayton and incoming University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler “went very well,” Dayton said at a press conference.

The meeting was the first face-to-face encounter for the two, though they had talked on the phone a few times.

Dayton said heâÄôs impressed with how engaged Kaler already is at the University. Kaler, who will take over for outgoing President Bob Bruininks this summer, has been regularly visiting campus and meeting with University stakeholders since the Board of Regents chose him as the next president in
November.

Dayton was also thrilled to see how up-to-date Kaler is with the situation at the Legislature, where the University is facing large funding cut proposals from the Republican majority.

Kaler also met with House Speaker Kurt Zellers, R-Maple Grove, on Tuesday. Dayton said Kaler was looking to talk to more of the Republican leadership.

During their meeting, Dayton and Kaler discussed the schoolâÄôs bonding request âÄî particularly the physics and nanotechnology building âÄî which the University has identified as their top bonding priority, “and therefore my number one priority for the University,” Dayton said.

They also discussed potential state funding cuts and the effects University employees and graduates have as taxpayers in Minnesota.

The two will most likely meet again in the future to discuss anything necessary, Dayton spokeswoman Katharine Tinucci said.