Concern over lack of oversight involving sale of spin-out company

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on November 14th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) retained less than €1 million from the €65 million sale of a spin-out company developed on its campus, according to a special report by the Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG). The report also raises concerns over the WIT’s governing body’s lack of oversight of the sale, including issues such as changes to the institute’s equity stake and conflicts of interest involving senior staff members …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 13 November]

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WIT’s management of company sale criticised in report

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on November 13th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The State’s financial watchdog has criticised how Waterford Institute of Technology managed the development and subsequent sale of a campus company called FeedHenry Limited for €63.5m. The Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG) said that due to the potential value of the technology …” (more)

[Ingrid Miley, RTÉ News, 13 November]

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UL president hopes that ‘very grave matters are dealt with fully and finally’

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on October 30th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The University of Limerick has ‘a sharp focus’ on ensuring ‘very grave matters are dealt with fully and finally’ at the university, the UL president has told staff. In a letter to staff this Tuesday morning, Dr Des Fitzgerald updated his UL colleagues on changes made at the university, ahead of the publication of a special report carried out by the Comptroller and Auditor General …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Limerick Leader, 30 October]

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Three Institute of Technologies facing financial black holes as it emerges they are millions in debt

Posted in Governance and administration on September 27th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“At least three leading State-funded third level institutes of technology have been ordered to draw up three-year financial recovery plans after it emerged they are millions of euro in debt – putting significant pressure on key front-line services …” (more)

[BreakingNews.ie, 27 September]

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Colleges’ sabbatical pay under Higher Education Authority spotlight

Posted in Governance and administration on September 21st, 2018 by steve

Ireland“A review of policies on pay and other benefits for third-level college staff is about to begin, almost a year after it was due to commence. The Higher Education Authority (HEA) review is to focus on examining policies in respect of pay, pensions, travel, and leave, and how those policies are applied …” (more)

[Niall Murray, Irish Examiner, 21 September]

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Absent NUI Galway employee paid €90k by college during leave

Posted in Legal issues on September 14th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“A staff member at NUI Galway was paid more than €90,000 while absent on grounds that did not meet the university’s own rules around payments for sabbatical leave. The person was one of an unknown number with whom NUI Galway concluded employment-related settlements in the 2016-17 financial year. The university’s financial statements for the year to the end of last September said those settlements cost it €134,000, including severances …” (more)

[Niall Murray, Irish Examiner, 14 September]

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€4.5m UCC spend ‘non-compliant’

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on March 16th, 2018 by steve

“University College Cork paid nearly €4.5m to 39 suppliers for goods and services in one year without going through proper procurement, new accounts have revealed. More than €3.9m relating to 34 suppliers was declared by the university itself, according to its financial statements for the year up to September 30, 2016 …” (more)

[Niall Murray, Irish Examiner, 16 March]

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Comptroller and Auditor General carrying out special report into UL audit findings

Posted in Legal issues on February 24th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General is drafting a special report into the findings of an internal audit carried out at the University of Limerick which found that the university provided inaccurate or incomplete information to several government bodies …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Limerick Leader, 23 February]

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Further questions for University of Limerick as details of confidential audit are revealed

Posted in Legal issues on February 5th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The University of Limerick has been plunged into yet another controversy following allegations that it mislead State bodies over unauthorised severance payments worth more than €1.2m. If these allegations are found to be true, the University’s behaviour “depicts a pattern of deliberate obfuscation and downright misrepresentation” according to Limerick TD Willie O’Dea …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Limerick Leader, 5 February]

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University Governance – NUI Galway

Posted in Governance and administration on December 7th, 2017 by steve

IrelandCatherine Connolly (Galway West, Independent): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the status of moneys due to NUIG in view of the confirmation given by the Comptroller and Auditor General to the Committee of Public Accounts on 6 April 2017 that the financial statements of NUIG recognised an amount of €17.5 million due from a foundation to the university at 30 September 2014 regarding capital projects in 2011, if that sum has been paid in full or in part and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil debates, 6 December 2017]

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Pipers, Tunes and Payment in the Higher Education Sector

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on July 24th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“Recent discussion on university funding has been on the basis of the Public Accounts Committee report. This, along with the RTÉ Prime-time Investigates program, has led to a perception of a state funded sector out of financial control. Both of these are wrong …” (more)

[Brian M Lucey, 24 July]

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State inquiry into NUIG whistleblower allegations

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on May 27th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“Allegations of malpractice at NUI Galway, highlighted by a whistleblower, are now being investigated by the State’s spending watchdog. Education Minister Richard Bruton has confirmed that a ‘procurement issue’ at the university is being brought to the attention of the Office of the Comptroller & Auditor General …” (more)

[Dara Bradley, Connacht Tribune, 27 May]

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Watchdog: UL paid two staff €450k to leave jobs

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on April 11th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“The state spending watchdog has found that the University of Limerick did not comply with good practice in offering two employees severance packages amounting to over €450,000 between them, following a review of high-value discretionary severance payments … ” (more)

[Anne Sheridan, Limerick Leader, 8 April]

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Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology: Financial Statements 2013

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on September 28th, 2015 by steve

IrelandJohn McGuinness (Carlow-Kilkenny, Fianna Fail): I remind members and witnesses to turn off their mobile phones as interference affects the sound quality and transmission of the meeting. I advise witnesses that they are protected by absolute privilege in respect of their evidence to the committee. However, if they are directed by it to cease giving evidence on a particular matter and continue to do so, they are entitled thereafter only to qualified privilege …” (more)

[Public Accounts Committee, 24 September]

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Three college staff ‘with no formal role’ paid €627,000

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on September 25th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“Three staff at a third-level college received €627,000 in salary payments between them – despite having no clear role. The staff did not have any defined duties following the amalgamation of the Tipperary Institute into Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT) in September 2011, according to Comptroller and Auditor General Seamus McCarthy …” (more)

[Shane Phelan, Independent, 25 September]

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PAC hears of three Limerick Institute of Technology staff earning €72k with nothing to do

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on September 24th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“Three employees at Limerick Institute of Technology are earning up to €72,000 a year, with no work to do. The issue has been raised at a hearing of the Public Accounts Committee this morning …” (more)

[BreakingNews.ie, 24 September]

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Dáil probe into ‘cash mountain’ of €160m in colleges

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on August 10th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“The Dáil’s spending watchdog is to investigate an ‘anomalous’ €160m cash mountain in Irish universities which is growing by €30m a year, the Irish Independent can reveal …” (more)

[Daniel McConnell and Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 10 August]

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New board for under-fire National College of Art and Design

Posted in Governance and administration on June 17th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“A new board has been announced for the National College of Art and Design (NCAD) aimed at strengthening its governance and financial controls after recent controversies. Minister for Education and Skills Jan O’Sullivan has named six new appointees including Niamh Brennan, academic director of the UCD Centre for Corporate Governance …” (more)

[Joe Humphreys, Irish Times, 16 June]

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Taxpayers could end up footing €4.1m bill for student grant overpayment

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on June 11th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“The Department of Education has said it has made a number of changes to how the student grants system is run after a €4.1 million overspend in the 2012-2013 academic year …” (more)

[TheJournal.ie, 11 June]

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SUSI problems addressed, PAC told

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on June 11th, 2015 by steve

Ireland“The Comptroller and Auditor General has told the Public Accounts Committee that he is happy to report that the initial problems at the SUSI grant system had been addressed and the performance had been significantly improved …” (more)

[RTÉ News, 11 June]

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