Poshard: There’s not enough support

Poshard: There’s not enough support

By Karsten Burgstahler

President presents legislators with repercussions of a 20 percent cut

If university officials want to avoid a major appropriations cut, they will need legislators to extend Gov. Pat Quinn’s temporary tax increases.

But President Glenn Poshard said Tuesday, that option is looking less likely.


Since Quinn’s budget address on March 25, Poshard has gone before three separate hearings in Springfield to propose what would happen to the university if it were forced to undergo a 20 percent appropriations cut. Quinn’s budget proposal calls for university funding to remain flat, $205 million for SIU, but if Quinn’s 5 percent personal tax and 7 percent corporate tax hikes are not renewed beyond Dec. 31, the school will see a 12.4 percent cut.

Poshard said after having spent a lot of days in Springfield, he believes there is not enough support now for extending the tax increase.

“(The legislators) only have a month and a half left in session,” he said. “Whether they can cobble together enough votes to pass it in an election year, no one seemed to think so.”

However, the governor is a strong advocate of the extension and will be in Carbondale next week to talk about Monetary Award Program grant increases, Poshard said.

“We just don’t know what’s going to happen, and in an election year it’s impossible to tell,” Poshard said. “Suffice it to say that even a flat budget, there is no such thing — labor and material costs go up every year, so even if we have the same appropriation it’s really a cut.”

SIU’s state funding has decreased to its present level from a high of $247 million in 2002, Poshard said.

The trustees will meet Thursday morning to vote on tuition and fee increases, as well as discuss when Randy Dunn will make the transition into the president’s office. Committee meetings begin at 9 a.m. in the Student Center Ballrooms with the full board meeting tentatively scheduled for 10 a.m.


Karsten Burgstahler can be reached at [email protected]on Twitter @kburgstahler_DE or at 536-3311 ext. 254.