USF asked to return $6.5M in federal grants
The federal government has asked USF officials to return $6.5 million in federal grant money the university improperly used for salaries and equipment purchases, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
The audit found that the university did not follow federal guidelines in 34 salary transactions and 40 non-salary transactions between October 2009 and September 2011, according to the Office of the Inspector General.
Paul Sanberg, USF senior vice president for research and innovation, said the university expects the final amount of the “unallowable items to be significantly reduced” once HHS concludes the audit.
“The University of South Florida takes seriously its responsibilities in managing research dollars, and is looking forward to working with the Department of Health and Human Services to resolve any concerns about the individual items charged to audited federal research grants,” Sanberg said, according to an email sent to The Oracle from USF Media and Public Affairs Coordinator Adam Freeman.
Additionally, Sanberg said “USF will continue to work internally on its own processes to ensure that expenses billed to federal research grants are properly documented” and it is “not unusual for large and successful national research universities to be audited and asked to return federal dollars at the end of the audit.”
The report by the HHS Office of the Inspector General also showed concern over the university’s grant oversight system in general, and labeled it as a “high-risk area.” The report recommended university officials enhance their oversight of what is and is not charged to federal grant funds.
“These unallowable transactions occurred because the University did not provide adequate oversight to ensure consistent compliance with federal regulations,” the Inspector General said in the report.
While the Office of the Inspector General is in charge of making recommendations for the amount to be reimbursed, a more complete audit is being conducted by the HHS agencies that funded the grants for USF.
In December, the university faced criticism when a state audit revealed the university had overpaid three top administrators and improperly allocated $1.7 million to former football coach Skip Holtz as part of his severance package.
Get Top Stories Delivered Weekly
From Around the Web
More usforacle News Articles
Recent usforacle News Articles
Discuss This Article
MOST POPULAR USFORACLE
GET TOP STORIES DELIVERED WEEKLY
FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER
LATEST USFORACLE NEWS
FROM AROUND THE WEB
- Building a Better Bridge From Hospital to Home Health Care
- 8 Tips to Selecting Colors for Your Home's Exterior
- This Year, Make a Goal to Contribute More to Your 401(k)
- Giving the Elderly a Lift -- In Their Home
- 4-H Grown: Alumni Asked to Stand Up and Support STEM...
- Haven't Tried Sardines? Try These
- Weatherizing Your Home Can Mean Big Benefits
- 10 Tips to Stay Safe During Spring Break
- 10 Tips for Staying Safe During Spring Break
- 3 Things to Know Before Ride-Booking a Car
COLLEGE PRESS RELEASES
- First Lady Michelle Obama and the Peace Corps Join Together to Expand Girls' Education
- Potential health risks of hookah smoking are being overlooked by users
- Study Finds College-age Millennials Hopeful for the Future, Worry about Student Loans and Overspending
- RetailMeNot Helps Students Save Money on Spring Break Travel
- Visit Virtual Study Abroad Fair on February 25 to explore study abroad options and win prizes