Barickman advances plan to help universities pay for COVID costs

As state universities continue to face significant unforeseen costs due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, a new resolution, co-sponsored by State Senator Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington) and designed to give the schools flexibility with their finances, has advanced through the Legislative Audit Commission (LAC).

“Our universities are facing an extremely difficult situation that has never been seen in our lifetimes,” said Barickman. “This resolution will give them some much-needed flexibility as they work to pay a still-growing stack of bills related to COVID-19.”

The new resolution, which passed the LAC unanimously on Tuesday, November 17th, allows state universities more flexibility with spend Indirect Cost Recovery (ICR) funds. ICR funds come from federal grants and are intended to help universities deal with overhead costs related to the grants. The resolution temporarily removes state restrictions on how ICR dollars are spent.

“Our state universities are not only important parts of our education system, but they also serve as major economic engines for the regions in which they are located,” said Barickman. “Any help we can provide them in this difficult time makes it easier for them to educate our students in a tough environment, and provides a much-needed boost to their communities.”

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