Springfield's selfishness blamed for universities' fiscal woes
Disappointed with Moody Investors Service’s recent lowering of Illinois’ credit rating, District 46 state House candidate Heidi Holan says selfishness in Springfield is to blame for ramifications on the state’s public universities.
"Having our public universities placed on review is one more indicator that the policies over the last decade have failed the people of Illinois and inflicted great damage to families,” Holan said. “Instead of guaranteeing funds for higher education, the super-majority chose to ensure that they would receive their paycheck. Such self-serving interests will continue to the detriment of taxpayers until voters choose to replace the legislators supporting harmful policies.”
Seven public universities across the Prairie State, including the University of Illinois, were placed on review after the state’s recent bond rating was downgraded from Baa1to Baa2.
Moody's has since downgraded Governors State University, Northeastern Illinois and Eastern Illinois universities to some degree of junk status. The majority of Northern Illinois University's bonds were also made junk status; and the credit ratings for Southern Illinois University and Illinois State were dropped to the minimal rank for investment grade.
The University of Illinois also had some revenue bonds downgraded.
Moody’s individual collegiate reviews examined the relationship of Illinois’ budget impasse to each university, comparing the rating changes to the schools' respective capacities to adjust to delayed or reduced state funding. Reviews included evaluations of anticipated liquidity and operating performance for the fiscal year ending June 30, budgeted 2017 fiscal year operations and contingency plans for each school to deal with lower state appropriations.
Moody's currently calculates approximately $2.3 billion of public university debt in Illinois.
“I invite Illinois taxpayers to join me in voting against the status quo on November 8," Holan said. "We can do better!"
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Carol Stream, IL - 60188