As a result of the ongoing state budget impasse, Northeastern Illinois University announced Tuesday it will implement furlough days starting Monday as a means to cut costs.
In a memo to the school community, NEIU President Sharon Hahs said "all Administrative and Professional and non-negotiated employees will do one furlough day per week beginning the week of March 14."
"Given that the budget impasse is entering its ninth month, the University is now compelled to begin its furlough program. This is necessary because we anticipate that our tuition revenue and reserves will be diminishing to the point where we can't sustain operations through summer and into fall," the memo said. "The furlough program, spending freezes, holding positions vacant, and other actions are intended to provide cost savings to bridge operations to the next major infusion of funds (the FY16 appropriation or fall semester tuition revenues)."
Illinois Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democratic legislative leaders have yet to agree on a state budget that should have taken effect in July. Higher education appropriations and funding for the state's tuition assistance program for low-income college students are among the casualties of the ongoing budget impasse.
Hahs said NEIU "will discontinue" its furlough program "when our state appropriation is received (assuming it will be adequate to meet this year's cash flow requirements)."
"The decisions we are forced to make are incredibly difficult and certainly painful both economically and personally," the memo added. "This is an action that we all regret having to take, but for the sake of our students and Northeastern, it is a necessary one. Working together, we will endure these unprecedented times."