U of I pulls crop research from St. Charles center

The University of Illinois will reduce crop production research at a center in St. Charles as the state's budget battles continue, the school announced Tuesday.

The move will affect the St. Charles Horticulture Research Center as part of a statewide decision to lay off nine people and shutter a few similar centers.

The center is "positioned at the intersection of urban, suburban, and rural landscapes," and "offers an opportunity to revitalize research, education, and outreach in horticulture, natural resources, and environmental science for the greater Chicago area," according to its website.

A call left there wasn't returned.

Illinois lawmakers haven't yet approved a full budget, and state universities haven't gotten funding since July 1.

Gov. Bruce Rauner proposed bigger-than-usual cuts to state universities in his initial budget plans this year. Those haven't been approved, but a statement from the university suggests its leaders are keeping the possibility of cuts in mind.

"These strategic decisions are driven by budget considerations, consequent to continuing reductions in state funding to the university," the statement reads.

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