Board of Regents to approve property purchase Friday

Elliott Pratt

The WKU Board of Regents will convene Thursday in Glasgow for its annual retreat before the third quarterly meeting Friday in Mass Media and Technology Hall.

The board will meet with a state demographer at the WKU Glasgow campus to hear about demographics changing in the state.

President Gary Ransdell said the retreat will give the board some extra time to discuss a variety of topics.

“We’ll speak with the state demographer on state demographics moving forward and things that need a little bit more elaboration than might normally be the case,” Ransdell said. “We’ll have just general conversation with the board and a dinner hosted by our two regents in Glasgow.”

Action items on the agenda for the third quarterly meeting on Friday include the approval of items brought forth by committees at the last meeting in June.

One of the items up for approval by the executive committee is the purchase of property located at 1590 Normal Street – Hillcrest Apartments.

The property is needed to complete the land needed for the new $22 million Honors College and International Center.

The university purchased the property for $950,000, the appraised value excluding closing costs.

An agreement between the property owner and the university was made after the regents adopted a resolution authorizing the exercise of eminent domain on April 26.

John Osborne, vice president for Campus Services & Facilities, said the university paid the maximum cost of the appraised value.

“There was more than one appraisal performed and at the end of the day what the university is doing is buying the property at the value that was placed on it at the highest value of the appraisal at fair market value,” Osborne said.

Funding for the property acquisition will come from agency bond funds dedicated to the construction of the Honors College and International Center.

In that same bond, which is up for approval Friday, is the financing of $15 million for the final phase of the renovations to the Downing Student Union, also known as DUC.

Other items up for approval at the meeting will be: The approval of a kitchen and bath undergraduate certificate, consolidation of three university college academic units into the School of Professional Studies, name change to The Graduate School, creation of a Center for Financial Success and Faculty Development separately, revision of the WKU Mission Statement, and an addendum to the athletic employment contracts of men’s basketball coach Ray Harper and women’s basketball coach Michele Clark-Heard.