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Lawmakers and University Officials in Illinois Warn of Cuts to Higher Education

Lawmakers and University Officials in Illinois Warn of Cuts to Higher Education

“unless the state finds new sources of revenue, there likely will have to be funding cuts”

Illinois is so overextended financially, it was only a matter of time before this happened.

The Bellville News-Democrat reports:

Lawmakers, university officials warn of higher ed cuts without new revenue

Democrats in the Illinois House, along with officials from each of the state’s public universities, warned that unless the state finds new sources of revenue, there likely will have to be funding cuts to higher education in the upcoming budget year.

“For years, our universities have been unfairly treated as their state has decreased funding to the universities,” Rep. LaShawn Ford, a Chicago Democrat and chairman of the House higher education budget committee, said Wednesday during a Statehouse news conference. “Last year’s funding level is not adequate enough, and as we go through the budget, we learn that the revenue to meet (the fiscal year 2019) level is not there.”

Ford said state funding for higher education peaked in 2002 around $2.4 billion. For the current budget year, the state is expected to spend only about $1.8 billion, roughly 25 percent less than it spent 17 years ago.

Ford was joined in the news conference by officials from each of the state’s public universities, as well as other members of the higher education budget committee.

President Elaine Maimon of Governors State University, which serves a large population of first-generation students, students of color, and military veterans, said colleges and universities were hit especially hard during the two-year budget impasse of 2015 to 2017 because the state was not under any legal or court-mandated obligation to fund higher education.

As a result, she said, during the 2015-2016 budget year, colleges and universities received no appropriations until April 2016, and even then received only about 30 percent of their normal funding. She said that resulted in significant cuts in university programs and services.

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Comments

SeekingRationalThought | May 6, 2019 at 8:58 am

This is what happens when voters elect politicians who put their own careers above the best interest of their voters. These careerists have been spending money buying votes and assume that when the money gives out, they can use sacred cows, like educations, to force more money out of the voters. Anyone familiar with careerist Democrat politicians in Illinois and elsewhere (but especially in Illinois) have heard the hacks endorsing this strategy. Its why I left Illinois. If Illinois voters continue to elect these creeps, they will deserve everything that happens to their state and lives.

I’m a conservative stuck in Illinois for the time being. There simply isn’t any more money. We are stuck with these leeches because Cook County continues to vote in these bloodsuckers, and the Downstate Democrats just go along for the ride. Speaker Madigan does not care what pain he causes to the rest of us. The anti-business bills that are being considered right now are laughable. If this continues, the flight from Illinois will only increase until we have nothing but the very poor, and the very rich, and no middle class to support anything.

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