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January 05, 2010

NIU Budget Statement Update

The news out of the University of Illinois today echoes the serious concerns that NIU and others began sounding late last year regarding the cash-flow crisis created by the current fiscal climate in the State of Illinois.

At that time, NIU President John Peters announced freezes on hiring and travel and instructed all university departments to reduce spending and defer payments. Those same directives are among the cost cutting actions being issued at the U of I today.  These NIU directives were initiated to supplement the 3% general revenue base-budget reductions for all divisions implemented at the beginning of the fiscal year (July 2009) in anticipation of projected state shortfalls.

“Since I issued that statement on Dec. 3,” said NIU President Peters, “I have been working with senior administrators to prepare for the consequences of a financial situation that continues to deteriorate.  As of January 1, 2010, NIU has yet to receive $62 million in vouchered state payments.

“I have asked my administration to consider measures to deal with both the cash-flow problems we are facing this fiscal year, and to develop strategies to accommodate reductions to the FY2011 budget.

“That said, we are not yet instructing employees to take or plan for furlough days. The senior cabinet will convene again this month to continue discussion on these issues and to determine if NIU must take more drastic steps to address our situation.

“I am joining with U of I President Ikenberry and with other public university presidents around the state in calling upon Gov. Quinn and members of the General Assembly to come together and begin taking steps to address the increasingly serious effects of delayed state payments on the continued operation of our state’s great institutions of higher education.”   

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