Both sides should ratify the new agreement and continue the hunt for the still-elusive remedy for the greening ailment.

“Let’s start anew,” Neil Sadaka sang eons ago, “ ‘cause breaking up is hard to do.” Thus, for a willingness to start anew with citrus growers, we commend the University of Florida.

Last week UF dispatched concerns about the future of citrus greening research that arose with talk of a split with the Citrus Research and Development Foundation by agreeing to continue the partnership.

In this space last month we questioned why UF’s trustees seemed determined to sever a decade-old partnership with the Lake Wales-based nonprofit, created in 2009 to steer research, and related funding, into the greening plague that has ravaged Florida’s groves for nearly 15 years.

UF had its reasons.

The university maintained that changes in state laws governing affiliated agencies like the CRDF required greater scrutiny of those contracts. In this case UF officials said the CRDF was not complying with state laws. UF believed that, as the foundation’s primary sponsor, it should have received all research funding the group raised, rather than just 65% it got — which still amounted to a hefty $72 million. The foundation wrongfully directed the other 35% to other research agencies, according to UF. The university also was concerned that the foundation had excluded its research office and the trustees, respectively, from oversight of contracts and other decision-making policies that guided thinking on greening.

UF also had a legitimate precedent to focus its thinking: a $20 million settlement paid to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services after the feds alleged in 2015 that UF failed to adequately document research and associated costs on projects years earlier.

But our question — why abolish this partnership? — was more rhetorical than rooted in the administrative flaws that UF saw in the current arrangement.

Rick Dantzler, the foundation’s chief operating officer, told The Lakeland Ledger recently that he was prepared to negotiate a “divorce” from UF when he went to meet with university officials last Wednesday. Instead, he was pleasantly surprised by an attitude of reconciliation.

Dantzler said he and senior UF administrators reached an understanding, which this time will be put in writing, that allows the CRDF to continue much as it has under certain conditions. For instance, UF’s research office will review foundation contracts only to ensure conformity with university policies, but will not pass judgment on the proposed research itself. The trustees also will require the foundation to comply with their governing policies, but will not demand all foundation funding nor authority over all its board’s decisions.

Dantzler told The Ledger that he believes the potential break-up generated blowback from the citrus industry and its supporters that helped UF understand more fully the “unique set of circumstances” that binds the industry and the foundation. If so, good.

It is surprising that UF didn’t get that previously. But better now than after a split.

Both sides should ratify the new agreement and continue the hunt for the still-elusive remedy for the greening ailment.

This editorial originally appeared in The Lakeland Ledger.