CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) - Southern Illinois University President Glenn Poshard says the school has met a budget milestone.
He told The Southern Illinoisan Editorial Board on Monday that for the first time in several years SIU has been able to enter the next fiscal year with a budget equal to the previous year. University officials had been bracing for another 5 percent cut, but instead were able to convince state lawmakers to reinstate funding at the previous year's level. The school's budget will be $203 million.
Poshard also discussed enrollment. He says it's unrealistic to think the school's declining enrollment will turn around. But Poshard says he sees evidence enrollment is moving in the right direction. He says he has confidence Chancellor Rita Cheng will accomplish the task.
A metro-east state senator says he'll file legislation to have the Southern Illinois University Board of Trustees disbanded.
Alton Senator Bill Haine says the governor needs to start over after board member Roger Herrin tried to have himself appointed as chairman.
Yesterday's board meeting in Carbondale ended early when trustee Marquita Wiley of Belleville and SIU-Edwardsville student trustee David Hamilton walked out in protest. The two objected to the election of officers, saying no chair should be chosen until Governor Quinn and the Illinois Senate fill three vacant board seats.
The walkout effectively stopped Herrin's election, because with only five seats currently filled, Wiley and Hamilton's absences meant the board didn't have a quorum.
Madison County Prosecutor Thomas Gibbons is asking Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan to appeal the appellate court's ruling to the state's Supreme Court.
Twenty-seven year old Olutosin Oduwole was released Monday from a prison in Jacksonville. He'd been serving a five year sentence linked to a 2011 conviction of attempting to make a terrorist threat.
Prosecutors say a note found in Oduwole's abandoned car in 2007 threatened a murderous rampage if he wasn't paid $50,000. As an aspiring rapper, Oduwole claimed the writings were just lyrics or other musings.
Maura Possley, a spokeswoman for Madigan, said Gibbons' appellate request was being reviewed.
Olutosin Oduwole was convicted of threatening a violent rampage but an appeals court threw out the conviction last week. The aspiring rapper was freed on Monday.
The Thursday morning meeting was canceled for lack of quorum because of the three vacancies and the absence of a fourth trustee.
That came a day after the Illinois Senate overwhelmingly rejected Quinn's appointments of three replacements for three board members whose terms expired last month.
Wednesday's failed ratification vote continues a year-old power struggle at SIU.
The rift dates to early last year when the SIU board refused to give Quinn-appointed Roger Herrin another term as chairman. The board contended he was too involved in day-to-day operations. Those who voted to oust Herrin included the three members Quinn replaced this week.