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President Thomas: Budget Update March 2019

March 8, 2019

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March 8, 2019

Dear University Community,

In recent meetings and other communication, I, along with members of the leadership team, have shared with you the fiscal realities facing Western Illinois University. It has been essential to make reductions to meet the University's financial obligations, including payroll and contractual commitments.

Over the years, WIU has achieved savings through attrition, position reductions, leaving positions vacant, and other cost-saving measures. Despite these ongoing efforts, we were charged by the Board of Trustees to make additional significant adjustments to reduce the University's budgeted expenditures. My leadership team and I have had numerous in-depth discussions with leaders from across the University as we looked at every area in which savings could be realized.

The projected budget reductions for fiscal years 2020-2021 are as follows:

Personnel reductions:
$ 3.7 million (UPI-represented faculty/academic support employees; includes June 2018 & March 2019 layoff notices)
$ 3.4 million (Civil Service and administrative employees; approx. $350,000 in savings is expected to be realized in FY19)
$ 9.0 million (employee retirement/resignation - estimated)

Operating reductions:
$ 3.2 million

Total Projected Budgeted Reductions:
FY20 - $ 17.7 million
FY21 - $ 1.6 million

The fiscally conservative practices that have been in place for some time continue:non-essential purchases will not be approved; all travel must have vice presidential approval; any expense of $200 or more requires vice presidential approval; P-Card restrictions continue; and a hiring freeze remains in place, with the exception of positions that are essential to University operations.

We continue to work with legislative and state leaders to advocate for adequate and fair funding for public higher education. We continue to share Western's story throughout our state and beyond. A Western Illinois University degree has great value, and we will ensure that our nearly 119-year-old tradition of providing an affordable, accessible and quality education continues.


Jack Thomas

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