Illinois owes U of I $450 million

March 1, 2011

The chairman of the University of Illinois Board of Trustees is criticizing the State of Illinois for not paying its bills on time. Chris Kennedy said Tuesday the state owed the university $450 million as of December. He said that unpaid debt damages the entire university's financial outlook.

"The really important issue is making sure is to see our university in its competitive context and make sure that the things that happen in Illinois don't force teachers or professors or researchers or scientists to leave the University of Illinois," Kennedy said.

Kennedy said many other universities around the country are not getting money promised to them, either, so professors are still inclined to stay at the U of I. He said the money owed to the university accounts for 10 percent of its total budget, so the university is able to operate okay day-to-day.