|For Immediate Release
November 18, 2004
New State Board of Education streamlines
Cost savings to help schools
Springfield, Ill. -The Illinois State Board of Education
has finalized the first phase of plans to streamline its
agency operations. The plan will reduce agency costs by
an estimated $2.6 million in FY 2005 and $3.8 million
in FY 2006. Interim State Superintendent Randy Dunn presented
the plan to the nine-member State Board of Education at
its monthly meeting today. The plan refocuses the agency
on its core mission of helping schools, teachers and students.
"The Governor put our team in place to make the
best decisions for schools and for kids," said Dunn.
"To do that, we knew we had to find ways to streamline
the agency and get more money going directly to schools.
It's the right thing to do."
The cost savings began with the new leadership's appointment.
The new team's executive management salaries are lower
than the previous team, projected to save at least $100,000
annually. Dunn immediately looked for other ways to reduce
management costs. He found a way to significantly reduce
the agency's lease costs by downsizing and relocating
executive offices, which include a private full bathroom
in the Superintendent's suite, from the fourth floor to
available space on other floors. Potential lease savings
could exceed $300,000 annually. In addition, the first
phase calls for the elimination of one position each in
the Governmental Relations Division and the General Counsel's
The plan also identified areas where the agency was incurring
costs for unwarranted services. In some instances, good
use of technology has helped reduce costs. For example,
electronic document transmission and Internet access to
agency publications has lowered high volume printing demands
by 75 percent, eliminating the need for a full-service
"We are no longer an island unto ourselves. At the
end of the day, having an in-house print shop and full-service
television studio doesn't help us serve schools,"
said Dunn. "They're luxuries we can no longer justify.
Instead, we need to direct as much money as we can to
After examining all agency operations, the Superintendent
identified a number of ways to reduce operational costs,
without affecting core services to schools. The plan's
operational cuts include:
- reducing General Revenue Fund (GRF) contractual services
expenditures by 13 percent;
- closing agency print shop by April 2005;
- closing video production studio or consolidating operations
with another agency by July 2005;
- closing agency warehouse facility, relocating operations
to main agency building; and
- reducing agency vehicle fleet from eight vehicles
The FY 2005 $2.6 million savings is available immediately
to the Governor and the General Assembly for reallocation.
Realizing the management salary savings will require General
Assembly approval to transfer funds. The State Board will
continue to find ways to reduce agency costs, making more
funds available to local school districts.