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Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 19 posts ] 
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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2016 9:01 pm 
Below is listed some statistics from the University Foundation from the 2009-10 year to 2014-15 year. The new administration took over July 2011. As you can see scholarships were over 50% of total expenses until 2011-12 when Presidential Contingency Fund was created. Since then the percent for scholarships has dropped to as low as 26% of expenses and in 2013-14 fell below $100,000 just 45% of what the scholarship money was in 2010-11.

As I understand it, the Presidential Contingency Fund is used mainly for Presidential entertainment. That’s about $1,000 a week for entertainment for the past three years. I’ve tried to get some information on expenditures from the Contingency Fund but the University is resisting.

According to Regents Minutes the Director of the Foundation now reports directly to the President. I guess the Foundation Board members are now just figure heads. Also, it appears that the professional employees of the Foundation are all wives of University Vice Presidents.


2009-10
Total Expenses…$377,144
Scholarships…$197,717
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…52%
Presidential Discretionary Fund…..Does not exist

2010-11
Total Expenses…$391,547
Scholarships…$222,140
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…57%
Presidential Discretionary Fund…..Does not exist

2011-12
Total Expenses…$417,404
Scholarships…$204,278
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…49%
Presidential Discretionary Fund…..$29,466
Per Cent of Expenses for Pres. Disc. Fund…7%


2012-13
Total Expenses…$410,537
Scholarships…$112,417
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…27%
Presidential Discretionary Fund…..$50,137
Per Cent of Expenses for Pres. Disc. Fund…12%

2013-14
Total Expenses…$378,021
Scholarships…$98,937
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…26%
Presidential Discretionary Fund…..$50,175
Per Cent of Expenses for Pres. Disc. Fund…13%

2014-15
Total Expenses…$393,589
Scholarships…$135,913
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…35%
Presidential Discretionary Fund…..$52,542
Per Cent of Expenses for Pres. Disc. Fund…13%


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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 7:07 pm 
The following is from the audit of the WNMU Foundation for 2015-16:

Total Expenses...... $379,354
Scholarships..........$120,332
Percentage of expenses for scholarships........32%
President's Discretionary Fund...........$52,725
Percentage of expenses for President's Disc. Fund.....14%

From previous audits:
2009-10
Scholarships…$197,717
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…52%

2010-11
Scholarships…$222,140
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…57%

2011-12
Scholarships…$204,278
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…49%

2012-13
Scholarships…$112,417
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…27%

2013-14
Scholarships…$98,937
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…26%

2014-15
Scholarships…$135,913
Per Cent of Expenses for scholarships…35%

The President's Discretionary Fund started in 2011-12 with the coming of the new administration. Notice the drop off of scholarship money. I'm told the President's Discretionary Fund is used mostly for entertainment by the President.

Give.org says that a charity should spend at least 65% of total expenses on program activities.


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 Author: pekeclooney
PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 12:16 pm 
How do I assure any money I donate to the Foundation directly benefits the WNMU students? Also whoever was running the WNMU Foundation from 2009-11 tried to get the money out to students. Whose leadership has significantly changed the percentage of money benefiting students' education? Did the director of the foundation or the president of the board bring in such a new management style that caused such an abysmal decline in funds going to students?


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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Wed Jul 05, 2017 5:54 pm 
The new style including the President's Discretionary fund was brought in by President Shepard, President of the University. The executive director and one other administrator of the Foundation are wives of University Vice Presidents.


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 Author: Used2B
PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 5:47 am 
The question is valid but I am certain that the focus on the Foundation employees is misdirected. Both of the VP wives, along with the other hardworking Foundation employees, want the best for WNMU students. The Exec Director does an amazing job with fund raising events. Both wives also invest their personal time in the 24 Club, which has a long history of raising money that is earmarked for WNMU scholarships. Don't let the marital status of the employees distract you from the important question that is being asked here.


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 Author: samarpan
PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:00 am 
It is not unusual for family members of executives to be given jobs. I heard about one chief executive who gave jobs to his sons, his daughter, and his son-in-law, Jared.


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 Author: curious2
PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 11:35 am 
That is Equal Employment Opportunity: Thou shalt not discriminate against your sons or daughters or even your son-in-law. Hire them all!


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 Author: Used2B
PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 1:13 pm 
Actually, anti-nepotism policies would prevent anyone from hiring or supervising a family member. Since lots of people meet their significant other at work, it's not surprising to find that a following spouse is highly qualified for a position in the same organization. WNMU doesn't have a policy that facilitates employment for a following spouse (although many universities do), but they do consider these highly qualified candidates for employment when filling a bonafide vacancy through the competitive search process. I'm all in favor of scrutinizing the affairs of the university, but it would be nice if we could focus the lens a little so we don't negatively impact people who are doing good work. The President established his discretionary fund before the current Exec Director was hired, and only the Board can make decisions about spending limits. Also, to be fair, most university presidents do have a discretionary fund of some kind. I think the real question here is about accountability and whether or not WNMU students benefit from expenditures made from the president's discretionary fund.


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 Author: samarpan
PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 7:37 pm 
"I think the real question here is about accountability and whether or not WNMU students benefit from expenditures made from the president's discretionary fund."

If what is needed is accountability, who is the president accountable to and who decides whether students benefit? The students? The faculty? The tax payers? The regents? The governor? Are budgets and expenditures subject to any state laws regarding transparency related to public documents or how a state employee (the WNMU president) spends tax dollars or special funds?

Or is accountability written down on paper, maybe in a statute or regulation, but in practice there is no accountability and no realistic mechanism for enforcement, censure, or separation from service?


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 Author: Used2B
PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 7:58 am 
Since the President's contingency fund is a new line item in their budget, the Foundation would need to develop a policy to impose any limits on the amount he can spend. I'm not sure if that happened. As a donor, I would want to know about a policy like that before I gave the Foundation "undesignated" money. You can also be specific about your donation and direct it to a scholarship fund so it can't be used for anything other than a scholarship. As a side note: the WNMU Foundation doesn't charge the usual small percentage administrative fee that most Foundations use to cover their operating expenses. Got to pay the accountants, etc. no matter how charitable you are. (This amount is usually called an "indirect" expense.) They may someday - understandably - want to implement a fee like this. If so, they would need to disclose that info so people would know before donating that a small portion would go to that purpose. Which sounds like a reasonable approach to me when donated money isn't "directly" used for something tangible that benefits the students.


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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 6:09 pm 
Used2B
It may surprise you to know that the following statement is in the audit report for the Foundation:

For endowment assets, the governing board has authorized a spending limit of 2% of available funds to cover administrative costs.

It’s unclear if they are collecting this fee but the Foundation Operating Budget shows significant losses every year, I suppose the money to cover those loses has to come from somewhere.

Another statement that was in all the audit reports up to 2014-15:

“Per written agreement between the Foundation and the University the management of the Foundation is autonomous from the management of the University”.

This was removed starting in 2014-15 because President Shepard made the following statements in the Dec 10, 2015 Regents meeting:

“Foundation Board adjusted its bylaws to have the Executive Director position report to the President”.

So President Shepard in now not only the CEO of the University but also the CEO of the Foundation and the Foundation is no longer autonomous of University management. Now the Board of Directors of the Foundation is only for show and according to the directors I’ve spoken to have essentially no power. Of course to take control of the Foundation away from the Board of Director you have to have a weak uninterested Board. So now President Shepard can authorize any amount for the President’s Discretionary Fund.

To see how well the new system is working; during the 2015-16 year the Foundation had a fund raising effort to raise $133,000. If successful the State would match it two dollars for one dollar or give the University $266,000 for the WNMU Academic and Research Monitoring Program (WARM). The Foundation was only able to raise $18,000 before the time limit ran out.


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 Author: Used2B
PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 3:31 am 
I stand corrected regarding the 2% administrative fee. :)


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 Author: Gilaafuera
PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 3:57 am 
Perhaps a not-for-profit or a church would be willing to set up an escrow fund where people could pay the money until certain conditions are met such as establishing autonomy from the beneficiary of the foundation. I don't know any of the particulars but the trends are disturbing. Is there an outside auditor? Are the audits published? The foundation should not be a slush fund for anyone, but donors need to maintain the habit of giving until this gets resolved.


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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 5:14 pm 
The audits for WNMU and the WNMU Foundation can be found on the State Auditor website.

I urge you to go there and see the numbers for yourself.


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 Author: crow
PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 12:29 am 
Al, please provide a link to the page you refer to on the state auditors website.


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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 7:29 am 
https://www.saonm.org/media/audits/962- ... FY2016.pdf


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 Author: elektron
PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:17 pm 
What are the approximate $100,000 in "in-kind contributions" that the Foundation receives from the University? The figures appear in the audit, but the narrative seems only to imply part of it is to pay for Foundation salaries.


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 Author: almilligan
PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 6:56 pm 
Salaries of the Foundation:

Edens-Crocker.. $70,000
Frederick..$37,000
Bundage..$26,000

Salaries and benefits are north of $173,000, that’s more than the Foundation pays in scholarships to students.

The Foundation, also, get free rent for their office space along with utilities, and use of the University computer system. Also, administrative and IT support, you can see the Foundation on Western’s web site.


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 Author: elektron
PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 6:23 am 
In addition, the university reimburses for Foundation salary expenses, which even further offsets the payment to the president's discretionary fund. Also, the Foundation draws 4.5% per annum from the investments, with 2% going to administration, and 2.5% going to student scholarships. That's public information. Therefore, the amount paid to scholarships can and does fluctuate with the performance of the investments.


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