3/2/2011: In testimony at the legislature yesterday President Lariviere raised the stakes and then called Pernsteiner’s bluff, adding a 5% in-state tuition cap to his new partnership plan. He can do this because his plan includes a fixed state contribution, large new private donations, and a workable strategy for getting them. Pernsteiner could always promise students a lower cap. But if pressed to show his numbers, he would have to admit he would get there by gutting UO’s research mission. Franklin Bains of the ODE has a story here, Bill Graves of the Oregonian here, these quotes are from the Greg Bolt RG story here:
Lariviere’s proposed tuition amendments didn’t immediately win over some students. Representatives of the UO student government and the statewide Oregon Student Association testified against the plan.
“Without checks and balances from the OUS and Legislature, we could see the UO as only a place for the very wealthy or the few fortunate enough to receive a scholarship,” said Emma Kallaway, legislative director for the state student association and a past UO student body president.
But the plan also has many supporters among faculty, the business community and other students.
UO finance professor John Chalmers, a member of the UO Senate budget committee, said that group supports the plan because it would provide for more predictable funding, the likelihood of future funding increases and excellent opportunities for academic fundraising.
“We believe the New Partnership takes a leap forward,” Chalmers said. “It’s a plan that can improve the quality and access to the University of Oregon.”
This bit is more problematic:
But some students said they consider that part of the plan risky because it puts the university’s financial future in the hands of private investment managers at the UO Foundation. They also worry that donors to the endowment will interfere in how the UO is managed.
“Anytime we’re accepting private money, there’s usually strings attached for how that money should be spent,” said UO student body President Amelie Rousseau in response to questions by state Sen. Larry George, R-Sherwood. “We’re seeing kind of a shift in priorities from academics to other things we have a lot of concerns about, and we don’t want that trend to continue.”
Ms Rousseau is right to worry. The UO Foundation is an expensive money laundering operation for the Duck Athletic Fund. They do not follow state transparency rules, and they have hired an attorney who convinced the state AG they did not need to.
Their President Paul Weinhold has now asked the IRS for a *second* extension for their 2009 990 report – due last Oct 15. This is the form that shows their expenses, including his salary and benefits. No wonder he wants to hide it as long as he can. But all you have to do is take a look at their plush new offices – right between Matt Court and the Jock Box – to know what they are up to. They could have spent that money on classrooms, to them this was a higher priority.