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Board of Trustees approves FY18 operating budget

The Board of Trustees of Illinois State University approved the University’s official annual operating budget of $426.8 million for FY2018. During its May 2017 meeting, the Board authorized expenditures from tentative budget allocations before state appropriations for FY2018 were known.

Trustees approved an FY2019 appropriated operating budget request of $123.9 million and a capital appropriation request of $301 million. The requests will be formally submitted to the Illinois Board of Higher Education.

The requests are based on the University’s strategic plan, Educating Illinois 2013-2018, and will allow the University to address critical statewide goals for higher education. The operations request of $123.9 million represents a 90.6 percent increase over the prior year appropriation, given the cumulative financial assistance needed to help alleviate the negative impact of partial state funding in FY2016 and the 10 percent reduction in FY2018.

The FY2019 capital appropriation request is $301 million, including five major capital projects totaling $297.9 million, and two capital renewal projects totaling nearly $3.1 million. Projects include rehabilitation or construction projects for Milner Library, the Mennonite College of Nursing, DeGarmo Hall, Thomas Metcalf School, University High School, and Williams Hall.

The projects included in the FY2019 request are the same as those included in last year’s request, as no new state funds were appropriated to support University capital projects in FY2018.

Revenue bonds
Trustees also authorized the issuance of a new series of auxiliary facilities system revenue bonds for the purpose of debt refinancing. The new 2018 series auxiliary facilities system revenue bonds will provide the opportunity to issue debt at lower interest rates and should result in significant savings for the University over the life of the bonds.

The new 2018 series bonds will replace $58.4 million of existing bonds issued in 2011 for the construction of Cardinal Court through a public-private partnership with Collegiate Housing Foundation, and permit Illinois State to fully acquire the Cardinal Court complex and incorporate it into its auxiliary facilities system. The new 2018 series bonds will also replace $23.1 million of 2008 series bonds issued for the construction of the Student Fitness Center.

At current interest rates, the University anticipates saving approximately $21 million over the next 25 years for Cardinal Court and an additional $3 million over 15 years for the Student Fitness Center.

Contracts
Trustees approved an increase in the current contract with Paciolan Inc. for athletic event ticketing. In October 2012, Illinois State Athletics received Board of Trustees approval for a budget of $700,000 for the Paciolan Inc. ticketing system.

The full Board of Trustees ratified and confirmed action taken by the Board’s executive committee to approve a contract for the reappointment of Illinois State President Larry Dietz. The executive committee approval of the contract was given during a special meeting on September 30. Trustees also authorized a performance bonus for Dietz, as outlined in the contract. The bonus was based on Dietz’s positive FY2017 performance review.

Civil Service revisions
Trustees also gave approval to revisions to the Illinois State University Constitution to more accurately reflect the role of Civil Service employees at the University. Revisions were made to Article IV, Section 3B of the Constitution to more fully describe the role of Civil Service employees in campus shared governance, and more clearly outline their employment under the State Universities Civil Service System.

Honors Program Building
Trustees approved the renaming of the former Professional Development Building on campus as the Honors Program Building. The University’s naming committee made that recommendation and the plan received prior endorsement from President Larry Dietz.

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