When Eastern Illinois University's Board of Trustees meets next week, it will consider the university's proposed Fiscal Year 2008 operating and capital budget requests which, combined, total nearly $67 million.
The meeting begins at 11:30 a.m. Monday, June 26, in the University Ballroom of Eastern's Martin Luther King Jr. University Union.
Eastern, as part of the state's annual budgeting process, must submit its appropriations request to the Illinois Board of Higher Education who, in turn, makes its higher education budget recommendations to the governor in December. The governor presents his budget recommendations, via his annual State of the Budget address, normally given in February.
In April, universities provide testimony regarding their budget requests before the Illinois House and Senate Appropriations Committees, and the General Assembly, in turn, finalizes appropriations by the end of May. The governor will sign the appropriation bill some time around July 1, 2007, and funds are made available to universities by early July.
Provided that the university's trustees approve the proposals as presented, Eastern will request nearly $60 million alone in order to address some of the many maintenance capital projects and maintenance needs awaiting attention on campus. Topping that list is a request for approximately $19 million which would enable the university to upgrade its utilities infrastructure, including the replacement of steam distribution and condensate return piping systems, utility tunnel water distribution mains, sanitary sewage laterals and mains, and storm water collection and discharge systems.
A second request to be considered involves $13.2 million for the rehabilitation of Eastern's steam production facilities. The university has identified serious deferred maintenance needs in its steam generating plant and in the scrubber systems. Failure to address these needs will result in the eventual loss of ability to supply essential campus steam services.
Other requests for trustees' consideration include $8.3 million to plan a new science building, $4 million for environmental health and safety work and $2.7 million for asbestos abatement in Old Main. Other proposed regular capital improvements include equipment for the Doudna Fine Arts Center; the rehabilitation of the Klehm Hall, Coleman Hall and Life Science Building's HVAC and plumbing systems; and continued work on the campus's chilled water loop.
The board also will review an FY 2008 appropriated funds operating budget increase request of nearly $8 million - an 8.4 percent increase over FY '07's projected operating budget. The request includes a 5 percent increase to Eastern's salary base and an additional 2 percent increase for retention of critical faculty and staff; a 7 percent increase for Social Security payments (Medicare portion); a 15 percent increase for library acquisitions; a 20 percent increase for Eastern's utilities budget; and a 2 percent increase for general costs.
In other action, the board will consider several employment issues, including administrative personnel contracts and contract renewal/wage agreements with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local #146 and Plumbers and Pipefitters Local #149.