Gov. Rod Blagojevich and the legislature approved the FY09 general revenue budget for WIU as $59.9 million, an increase of $1.6 million over the FY08 budget.
“While we are pleased that we have an increased general revenue budget for the new fiscal year, it is still our hope that a capital budget will be passed in the very near future that will allow for construction of the Quad Cities Riverfront Campus and the Performing Arts Center in Macomb, as well as help reduce our extensive deferred maintenance needs,” said President Al Goldfarb. “We also hope that the legislature and the governor might find ways to restore the student financial aid funds and higher education grants that promote student success, health education and diversity.”
Goldfarb added that the increased funding helped support a 3.5 percent salary increase for non-negotiated employees, effective July 1.
“We appreciate that the legislature and the governor kept our public universities in the forefront of the budget discussions,” Goldfarb said. “We will now be in a position to begin budgeting for the University’s new nursing and engineering degree programs, should they be approved by the Illinois Board of Higher Education.”
In addition, Western’s Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs will also receive $1 million for continued ethanol and value-added products research.