The Montana Senate stripped $20 million in funding for the renovation of MSU’s Romney Gym from a bill allocating funding for construction projects in legislative action Friday, April 12, throwing a wrench in the university’s plans to remodel the 1922 building for academic use.
While university leaders said they hope to persuade legislators to approve a bonding bill that would borrow money to fund the project, it is unclear whether the necessary two-thirds majorities in the Senate and House will support the action.
Kiah Abbey, MSU’s student body president, said Wednesday that ASMSU will encourage students to write letters to legislators supporting the project. She speculated that the project might have been de-prioritized in part because MSU students have not been as active in lobbying for the project as students on other campuses have been, but said that there is certainly “excitement” around renovation.
MSU hopes to use the renovated building to provide space for academic affairs and student-community collaborations.