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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The president of the University of Illinois system appeared before a state Senate committee asking for an increase in annual state funding.

President Timothy Killeen told lawmakers Thursday that the school has “taken a bit of a reputational hit” due to the recent state budget impasse. He says the system is seeking support to recruit and retain scholars and researchers. The system is seeking $681 million in state money. That’s up from $583 million in the budget year that ended last June and $650 million in the budget year that ends this June.

Gov. Bruce Rauner has proposed $588 million in his budget.

Killeen also told lawmakers that he wants to increase the university system’s enrollment to 93,000 by 2021 from the current nearly 84,000 students.

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