MADISON, Wis. (AP) -

The University of Wisconsin-Madison has fallen out of the National Science Foundation's top five research institutions for the first time in over 40 years because of the school decreasing spending on research.

The Wisconsin State Journal reports the university's spending on research declined by over $100 million between 2012 and 2015. Campus officials highlighted the falling expenditures Tuesday as they encouraged lawmakers to increase funding for the University of Wisconsin System in the next state budget.

Vice chancellor for research and graduate education Marsha Mailick says years of funding cuts have made it more difficult for the university to recruit top researchers.

Mailick says the state needs to reinvest to make sure the institution has faculty positions and conditions necessary to attract and retain the best researchers.