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Eastern Illinois University says cost-cutting measures helped lower deficit to $1 million


CHARLESTON, Illinois — Efforts over the summer to reduce costs at Eastern Illinois University, including layoffs and furloughs, dropped the school's budget deficit from $13 million to $1 million, EIU President David Glassman said.

Cost-cutting isn't over yet, Glassman said during his State of the University address on Monday.

"Without knowing our state appropriation for this year and other factors, it cannot be competently predicted whether additional employee layoffs will be necessary for us to balance our FY16 budget," Glassman said, according to the Mattoon Journal-Gazette and (Charleston) Times-Courier (http://bit.ly/1MDJ6Pj ).

EIU, along with other state universities, doesn't have a state appropriation because GOP Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democratic leaders in the Illinois Legislature have yet to settle on a state budget for the current fiscal year.

EIU put its budget together based on an expected 6.5 percent cut in state funding to higher education, but the percentage could be higher.

The school saved about $10 million through summer furlough, layoffs and other measures, Glassman said. Another $1 million came from retirements and employees leaving EIU, he said.

Glassman also cut intercollegiate athletics' funding by 20 percent, or $320,000, which athletic director Tom Michael said will have an impact but is necessary.

"We are going to work diligently to be fiscally responsible as part of the institution. Hopefully, we can still provide a great experience for our student athletes."

EIU earned about $500,000 from enrollment increases, Glassman said, and will receive another $400,000 by charging card holders credit card fees for tuition payments.

Information from: Mattoon Journal-Gazette, http://www.jg-tc.com

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