Quick Takes: U.S. Senator Seeks Changes in American U. Board, Conflict of Interest at Irvine, New York Budget Overrides, Getting Ready for Voice over IP, 2 Grambling Police Officers Arrested

April 27, 2006
  • Sen. Charles E. Grassley, an Iowa Republican who leads the Senate Finance Committee, is expected to call for several American University trustees to quit, and for the board to change its operations, The Washington Post reported. Grassley's committee has been looking into American's governance since the scandal broke about pay and benefits for Benjamin Ladner,  who left the institution's presidency with an exit package that outraged many students and faculty members. The Post reported that Grassley has been conducting talks with the American board to try to resolve his concerns quietly, but that those talks had collapsed.
  • Two investigations at the University of California at Irvine determined that there was a conflict of interest in a recent gift to its medical center, but that neither the donor nor the university realized it, the Los Angeles Times reported. The inquiries started after the newspaper revealed a gift of $250,000 to the radiology department shortly after the department gave the donor's son a resident position.
  • Both houses of New York's Legislature have voted to override many key vetoes by Gov. George Pataki of budget improvements for public colleges in the state, but the budget remains uncertain because of threats by the governor to fight many of the budget's large spending items, The Binghamton Press reported.
  • Fewer than half of colleges have migrated to voice over IP networks, but more are getting ready to move in that direction, according to a survey released Wednesday by ACUTA, the Association for Communications Professionals in Higher Education. Forty-three percent of colleges reported using the networks, but they covered an average of less than 25 percent of their campuses.
  • Two police officers at Grambling State University have been arrested and charged by Louisiana authorities with extorting funds from drivers whose cars they stopped, the Associated Press reported.
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