- Published: Thursday, November 17, 2016 09:37 AM
SPRINGFIELD – In the wake of a scathing audit exposing waste, fraud and abuse of resources at Chicago State University, Illinois State Senator Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park) is demanding the public university get its financial house in order or suffer the consequences.
“If Chicago State doesn’t address these problems soon, we will need to explore consolidating state colleges to streamline taxpayer dollars and make sure students are getting a quality education for the money they pay,” said Cullerton.
A recent audit by the Illinois Legislative Audit Commission found that Chicago State University had only an 11 percent graduation rate, was unable to verify who worked there, had overpaid employees and was missing numerous documents.
Making matters worse, said Cullerton, is that Chicago State gets special treatment from the state in that it is the only school in the state to get a cut of the state’s legalized gambling taxes.
The findings were the subject of an Audit Commission hearing this week in Springfield. Cullerton is a member of that commission.
Cullerton previously led efforts to reform the College of DuPage in the wake of financial and ethical scandals there. He said Chicago State officials need to either need to clean up their act or risk having lawmakers step in and do it for them.
“Illinois community colleges and public universities need to cut their administrative bloat and start delivering for the students and taxpayers,” Cullerton said. “The top priority of these schools needs to be serving our students and being responsible to the taxpayers whose dollars fund their operations. Unfortunately, it appears some have forgotten that.”
The Legislative Audit Commission is next scheduled to meet on Nov. 29 at 9 a.m.