Mt. Vernon Register-News

State News

February 28, 2013

Illinoisans brace for federal cuts, furloughs


"Unfortunately we're kind of in the dark," said Jon Pyatt, the University of Illinois' director of federal relations, said while working on Capitol Hill Tuesday.

Potentially at stake at the University of Illinois' three campuses is about $42.8 million, $33 million of which finances research over a wide range of subjects, spokesman Tom Hardy said. But the money represents less than 1 percent of the university's $5.4 billion operating budget.

Northern Illinois University could see a loss of about $2.7 million in research funding and $85,000 in financial aid and work-study funding, spokesman Paul Palian said. Officials at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston say they stand to lose only about $450,000, about 8 percent of the $5.6 million in federal money the school receives, spokeswoman Vicki Woodard said.



In Springfield, hours could be curtailed at the Lincoln Home National Historic Site, affecting as many as 117,000 visitors a year at the 42-year-old national park. Last year it drew roughly 300,000.

Mike Reynolds, director of the National Park Service's Midwest region, says he is scrambling to grapple with the potential of losing the funds.

"I think the American people are watching this transpiring, and they want reduced government spending. I get that," Reynolds added. "But I don't think they realize how this affects their lives."


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