Gilbert: SIU Funding Allocation Debate "Punted Back" From Consultants

Jul 17, 2019

SIU trustees discuss funding allocation in Springfield Wednesday.
Credit Jennifer Fuller/WSIU

A controversial plan to change how state monies are split between SIU campuses will take longer than some trustees had hoped. 

Southern Illinois University contracted with an outside firm to come up with an equitable way to distribute state funding after the process reached a boiling point in 2018. The recommendations are back - but they don't include a formula, as some trustees had hoped. Board Chair Phil Gilbert says the process of figuring out that formula now rests with trustees and administrators.

"I thought it would have more of a recommendation on how we set a pattern to develop an allocation, and it didn't. But they have given us a framework that we can take, and develop a fair funding model for both campuses."

To that end, Gilbert is appointing an ad-hoc committee that will include Trustees Ed Hightower and Roger Tedrick, along with finance leaders from both campuses. That group is expected to take the recommendations and turn them into a formula, and report back to trustees in September and December.

In the meantime, Gilbert says trustees will consider a multi-year plan to split all new monies 50/50 between the campuses.

"Right now, we're going to have a three-year hold harmless for the Carbondale campus, with new money being split 50/50 between Edwardsville and Carbondale. If the new model gets approved before then, then obviously it'll be implemented. And I hope it does - I don't want to wait three years."

The Board of Trustees meets in Springfield on Thursday.