President Jack Thomas issued a letter to the University Community in response to the passage of the Stopgap Budget. This budget again will fund critical governmental operations including higher education. You can read President Thomas’ full letter below.
Dear WIU Campus Community:
On the last day of Fiscal Year 2016, we have learned that the General Assembly and Governor have agreed to release $1 billion of funding to state universities, effective immediately. Western’s portion of this bridge funding is $31.4 million, plus an additional $5.1 million for MAP grants. After an unprecedented 12 months without a state budget, we appreciate that the legislature and the Governor have come to an agreement that provides emergency funding for state universities.
To our local legislators and the Governor, thank you for coming to an agreement in regard to providing additional emergency funds for public higher education. I urge our government’s leaders to provide FY17 funding in the near future, so that we can get back to the business of educating students without the worry of when, and if, a state budget and higher education funding will be approved.
To our alumni, faculty, staff, students, friends and everyone who continues to advocate for our University, thank you. Without your support, this incredibly trying year would have been even more difficult. Please keep Western at the forefront and continue to voice your support for public higher education funding.
As we look ahead to Fiscal Year 2017, which begins today (Friday), we are hopeful that legislators will support levels that will adequately provide for public higher education, and that a FY17 state budget is agreed upon and passed.