Two of the latest presidents to come to the Capitol, hats in hand, are from Illinois State University and Northern Illinois University, trying to stave off a proposed 31 percent cut in state funding. We've done a better job of raising more money on the private sector, says ISU's Larry Dietz. Last year, we raised, at the end of the fiscal year, $19.5 million.
With our faculty and staff not having had a raise in three years, and with over $460 million in deferred maintenance on our facilities, says Northern Illinois' Doug Baker, it would be difficult for us to even further reduce the budget.
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Baker says it could make up that cut by increasing tuition on freshmen by 75 percent. Truth in tuition policies keep universities from increasing tuition on most students once they enroll.
ISU's Dietz says in addition to preserving the state funding, he wants the legislature to keep intact the 50 percent tuition waiver for children of university employees. He says the director of the Bone Student Center has told him it could make the difference between her daughter going to Illinois State and going to Arizona State.