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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (April 4, 1973)
Wednesday, april 4, 1973
iincoln, nebraska vol. 96, no. 93
NU audit shows mismanagement of monies
by Mary Voboril
Bouncing checks, numerous
overdrawn fund balances and unpaid
student loans-some delinquent for
Committee to hold
fees bill until 1974
by Steve Arvanette
The Legislature's Education
Committee agreed Tuesday to hold for
a yedr an amended version of Millard
Sen. James Dickinson's LB362 which
would prohibit the collection of most
mandatory student fees.
The bill would permit the
mandatory collection of fees only for
medical services, repayment of bonds
and when the fees expenditure is
"directly related to a course of
Calloway Sen. J. James Waldron
had moved to kill the bill prior to the
agreement which now holds the bill
for possible interim study.
Lincoln Sen. Steve Fowler asked
Dickinson why health services would
be retained rather than such programs
as recreation and intramurals.
"I got more out of these areas than
student health services," the former
ASUN president said.
Dickinson acknowledged that
mandatory fees for health services
were retained in an attempt to get the
bill passed. However, he said he would
rather see health programs on a
Varner letter confirms
NU opposition to fees bill
The University of Nebraska is
officially opposing LB3G2 according
to a letter written by NU President
D.B. Varner and released Tuesday to
the Daily Nebraskan.
The bill, introduced by Millard Sen.
James Dickinson, would halt
collection of fee money except for
retirement of bonded indebtedness
and student health services. The bill
has been considered by the
Legislature's Education Committee.
The letter, addressed to Waver ly
Sen. Jerome Warner, Education
Committee chairman, says "the
programs supported by student fees
are vital to the total educational
process of the University." It also says
a voluntary fee program, which has
been recommended by some senators,
"would create a totally unm.inag.ible
program for the University."
Varner notes the Board of Regents
has the primary responsibility for
management of University affairs and
several years-taint NU administrative
management records, according to the
first outside public audit conducted
for NU in its 104 year-history.
Omaha Sen. George Syas, a
committee member, said he could not
suppor the amended bill.
"This goes too far," Syas said. "I'm
for putting a clamp on speakers and
maybe newspapers." Syas expressed
concern that the revised bill would
eliminate most athletic programs on
the University of Nebraska at Omaha
Grand Island Sen. Ralph Kelly said
if a fees supported program can't be
justified to 25 senators it shouldn't
Sen. Maurice Kremer of Aurora
told the committe: "We've alerted the
University that there is wide
disapproval (of student fees)." He
urged that the bill be held until next
year and that an interim study on fees
Dickinson said Monday that waiting
until next year to act on the bill would
just give "three or four $25,000 a-year
employees" another year to lobby
against the bill.
He termed lobbying by members of
a tax-supported entity a "little bit
i e commends that any der;s:ons
regarding the fee question be left in
He also offers the help of the
University administration in the
proposed fees study which the
committee is planning to undertake.
Varner also said "student leadership
on the campuses is making a
responsible effoit to have. ..student
fees serve the bust interests of the
students on the campuses." However,
he added, "students will err in their
judgement from time to time."
Some senators have said they are
opposed primarily to the controversial
nature of some campus speakers which
have been sponsored by student fees.
In the letter, Varner says "it is
unlikely controversy can be legislated
out ot existence."
The reason for the letter, Varner
said, is to clear up "some
confusion. ..about the position of the
(University) administration regaiding
The audit, piepaied by Peat,
Marwick, Mitchell & Co., a national
accounting firm with local offices in
Lincoln, was released by State
Auditoi, Ray A.C. Johnson last week.
The 19 page report, which cost
about $40,000, was requested by the
University. The Legislature
appropriated the money to Johnson's
office, The audit was commissioned to
aid Johnson in an examination of
University statements for the two
years which ended last June 30.
The repoit listed "significant
problem areas" affecting UNL, the
University of Nebraska at Omaha and
the University of Nebraska Medical
Center and offered recommendations.
The audit disclosed no
misappropriation of funds on the part
of University management. A major
deficiency detailed in the audit,
however, is Univeristy administration
of student loan programs.
"We conducted tests on student
loans administered by the University,"
the report said. "We noted loans
dating back several years on which
payments are not being received. The
collection on some of these loans
A complete review oi 1 h o student
loan administration was called for,
including implementation o, a system
wheie prompt follow-up unci
collection efforts would he made on
all delinquent loans.
Jack Ritchie, assistant
recently had conducted an extensive
audit (not yet released) of his
department and thLt a second review
probably would not be needed.
Another sore spot uncovered oy the
audit involves students who write
insufficient fund checks. For example,
James A. Wickless, UNL bursar,
reported about $12,000 in bad checks
had been returned to his office since
Feb. 1. Of that amount, about $2,000
has yet to be collected.
Union Board initiates
check cashing charge
A 25 cent fee will be charged for
cashing peisonai checks in the
Nebraska Union, beginning July 1.
This action, approved at a March 22
Union Board meeting is an attempt
to help cover the admimsti ,it ive
costs of the Union check (ashing
stations, according to M.uy
Cannon, Union Board President.
I he action follows an cat her
board decision to stop cashing
"two p.n 1 " ( h, i s.
At the s.iioc mei ho), Crioon
Wickless noted, however, that the
volume of bad checks has been cut
down since the University has allowed
use of bank charge cards (Master
Charge and BankAmericard).
Cases of overdrawn fund balances
on the part of the University is "not so
serious as it sounds," according to
Glenn Smith, director of business and
An overdraft sometimes occurs, for
example, in cases of grants given to
persons within the University.
Another discrepancy concerning
UNL involves computerized billing
totals that could not be reconciled
with tuition income calculated on the
basis of student numbers and credit
hours. The report indicated that
billings do not reflect cash receipt
adjustments in areas of scholarships,
loans and course drop and add fees.
Smith said his office disagreed with
the report in this respect.
"We might give a student a free
credit hour now and then, but this is
rare," he said. He indicated that
expenses involved to perfectly balance
tuition fees with student numbers,
credit hours are more than the money
they would save."
Reasons for accounting foulups are
diverse. Smith said. A major problem
involves changes in the way money's
allocated to the University by the
Legislature, he said.
"They used to give us a lump sum,
and we could allocate it within the
University as we saw fit. Now our
requests have to be coded, specifying
exactly what we want to use the
money for," Smith said.
He also noted that enrollment
doubled during the 1960s, which
caused accounting problems. He said
his staff is not sufficient to monitor
and review expenditures and money
rr-cieved on a day-to-day basis.
The metger of the University of
Omaha and the University of Nebraska
also caused problems, he said.
. :,- v.
' ' 'i ' '"'fit,. J .
said UNL Day Care Center
personnel have been "pressing for
extension of the services now
provided and for recognition of
themselves as an organization
sponsored by the Union."
The Board decided this question
should be referred to the Council
on Student Life. Board members
also suggested that, while they
support the idea of the day care
center being within the University
system, the Union is unable to
house the center .
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