The director of Illinois' Department of Agriculture says the agency will have to "get creative" if its budget continues to get cut. In the last five years, the Illinois Department of Agriculture has seen its state funding cut by nearly half. The agency inspects meat and monitors fuel quality. Ag Director Bob Flider says he's expecting more cuts in the next budget. So he's looking for alternative revenue sources.
“Other states have been able to, through foundations, bring in some dollars. We're going to be looking at some of those possibilities as well.” - Bob Flider
But he says finding private donors will take time. For now, he says the department will have to rely on being more efficient, like when it coordinated with other agencies in response to last summer's severe drought.
“I think hands-on, working hard, and rolling up our sleeves, and getting the job done is just going to be more of the same in the next year.”
Governor Pat Quinn is scheduled to give his budget address this Wednesday.
Illinois Public Radio's Chris Slaby contributed to this report.