Report recommends reimbursement of funds

Beth Wilberding

he Office of the Internal Auditor reported in May that more than $800 meant for Student Government Association activities was spent on questionable purchases.

The results of an investigation into the possible misuse of university funds in a SGA Dining Dollars account recommends that Henderson senior Nick Todd reimburse money to the SGA.

The results of the auditor’s investigation were obtained by the Herald through an open records request.

Julie Hodgkins, assistant to the internal auditor, said in an e-mail to a Herald reporter that questionable expenditures are “expenses that appear to be unallowed, undocumented, unapproved and/or unreasonable.”

Todd’s name was deleted from the auditor’s report because of privacy laws associated with recommended actions.

But the report lists Charley Pride, director of student activities and SGA adviser, and former SGA President John Bradley as two of the three people with access to the SGA Dining Dollars card. Todd was the only other person with access to the card.

Todd, who served as the vice president of finance, was the only suspect in the investigation.

The audit reports that a total of $872 in small purchases were made between August 2003 and May 2004.

There were three purchases made at Domino’s Pizza, totaling $115. The report states that receipts or other documentation could not be located for the charges.

“The usage dates and times do not appear to correspond with SGA events,” according to the audit report.

SGA does not require any of the three cardholders to record their transactions, so it could not be determined who made the purchases.

Of the $872, most of the remaining purchases were less than $10 and made at campus restaurants, the report stated.

The report also recommends that Todd reimburse the university $71 for a charge that was made with the SGA purchasing card after a rented vehicle was returned to an Enterprise Rent-A-Car in Bowling Green.

The vehicle was rented in March during spring break. Todd and a person who was not a member of SGA were listed as the renters of the vehicle, according to the audit report.

The audit report recommends that SGA members keep receipts of transactions made from the Dining Dollars account. It also recommends that the purpose of the transactions be recorded.

Another suggestion was that cards have “unique identification numbers to ensure responsibility for the purchases.”

Pride said privacy laws prevent him from revealing if any disciplinary action was taken against Todd.

Todd said nobody has access to the SGA Dining Dollars card at this time.

“Everything has to be done on paper like before,” Todd said. “The only reprimand I had was that the cards will never be used again.”

Gene Tice, vice president of student affairs and campus services, said campus police determined that no police action was necessary.

Though Pride led the initial investigation, it was eventually turned over to campus police, the university internal auditor and student judicial affairs.

Todd said he resigned as SGA president because of personal conflicts within the organization and not because of the results from the internal auditor.

Officials in the Office of the Internal Auditor attempted to schedule a meeting with Todd to discuss the questionable expenditures. But according to the report, Todd declined to meet with them.

Todd said he did not meet with the internal auditor because he could not arrange to have his attorney present.

But Todd said he met with members of the university judicial council at the end of June. He said the council decided not to take any disciplinary action.

The audit report states that Pride said Todd admitted that he was responsible for some of the questionable purchases and offered to reimburse the money.

Todd said he didn’t remember saying he would pay back any money. He said he told Pride that he was responsible for the card.

Todd said he allowed SGA members to use his card during SGA related events.

“Everyone had the authority to give out their card,” he said. “But I was the only one who did.”

Todd said several small account purchases showed up on the audit report because the ID card was swiped for each SGA member.

Reach Beth Wilberding at [email protected]