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Lawmakers Preach Caution As Colleges Ask For Funding

Indiana University CFO John Seidinaj and VP John Applegate present to the State Budget Committee.

Indiana’s public colleges and universities appeared before the State Budget Committee to make their cases for funding requests. But lawmakers weren’t very encouraging.

Some lawmakers preached caution during the schools’ presentations, sounding rather pessimistic about how much money the state will have in its new budget.

Indiana University, represented by CFO John Sejdinaj, preemptively acknowledged those concerns.

“We expect financial constraints will continue to be a challenge in upcoming years, particularly at IU’s regional campuses where finances are constrained,” Seidinaj said.

Ivy Tech President Sue Ellspermann presented her school’s top funding requests, including about $80 million for renovations at the Kokomo and Muncie campuses. Budget Committee Chair Rep. Tim Brown, R-Crawfordsville, then asked Ellspermann whether a gloomy fiscal outlook for the state would change her requests.

“It is what it is and because there was no funding two years ago, which many of you … we just have fallen further behind,” Ellspermann says.

Ivy Tech was the only public college not to receive funding for major projects in the last state budget.

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