News Local/State

Study: Budget Impasse Hurt Communities With Higher Ed Institutions


A U of I researcher says Illinois’ two-year budget crisis has hurt the state’s public universities and community colleges.

Robert Bruno is a professor in the U of I School of Labor and Employment Relations. He says over 60,000 fewer students enrolled in Illinois public universities and community colleges in the last two years.

The study also showed the lower enrollment levels meant 7,500 fewer higher education related jobs, which damaged communities with a public university or community college.

“They’re going to have less money to spend," he said. "They’re going to be contributing less in terms of tax dollars and the overall impact is you have a drag on the economy.”

Bruno thinks state government should institute a multi-year budget for higher education. He says that will show that the state supports higher education and there won’t be annual fights over funding.