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In Illinois and Pennsylvania, Budget Stalemates Force Colleges to Cover Their Losses

When Illinois failed to pass a budget back in July, Jack Thomas was sure the stalemate would end by August.

But August came and went, and with no end in sight, the clock kept ticking. Illinois’s Republican governor and Democratic Legislature still haven’t come to an agreement, and Thomas, president of Western Illinois University, hasn’t seen state appropriations in eight months.

“We’ve put a lot on hold,” Thomas said. “We’re now having furloughs. We have a freeze on hiring. We’re restricting travel.”