Baker breaks down NIU budget at UC


NIU President Doug Baker discusses Gov. Bruce Rauner’s budget cut proposal to NIU on Feb. 25 at University Council in the Holmes Student Center, Sky Room. Baker said the proposed budget cut of $29.3 million was “not OK,” but he looks forward to the legislative discussion on the budget this summer.

By Jackie Nevarez

NIU President Doug Baker said Gov. Bruce Rauner’s proposed $29.3 million cut to NIU’s state allocation is “just not OK.”

Rauner’s state budget plan calls for the state’s Fiscal Year 2016 higher education budget to be cut by $387 million. NIU was allocated about $93 million for FY 2015, but it would receive $64 million for FY 2016 if Rauner’s proposal were to pass.

The Democratic Legislature will now take on the governor’s budget proposal, Baker said. University representatives, including students, will accompany Baker to speak before the House and Senate on March 19 and 26.

The Sky Room fell silent as Baker presented University Council Wednesday with a scenario for state universities if the governor’s proposed cuts were to come to fruition. The current allocated budgets for Western Illinois University, Chicago State University, Eastern Illinois University, Governors State University, Illinois State University, Northeastern University and NIU would amount to about the $387 million proposed cut.