OU prof supports public university performance audit bill

Ohio U prof supports public university performance audit bill

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An Ohio bill that would expand performance audits to Ohio’s public colleges and universities has passed in the Ohio House and will now go to the Senate. Among the supporters of the bill is Richard Vedder, distinguished professor of economics emeritus at Ohio University. Ohio Auditor of State Dave…

An Ohio bill that would expand performance audits to Ohio’s public colleges and universities has passed in the Ohio House and will now go to the Senate. Among the supporters of the bill is Richard Vedder, distinguished professor of economics emeritus at Ohio University.

Ohio Auditor of State Dave Yost partnered with members of the Ohio General Assembly to draft House Bill 384, which gives the Auditor of State’s office the authority to conduct performance audits of Ohio’s institutions of higher education. Representatives Tim Schaffer and Mike Duffey introduced the legislation in the Ohio House of Representatives in November.

Vedder provided written testimony on the bill, saying, “The auditor can identify best practices and promote expanding them statewide.”

Vedder continued, “The state auditor now assures that universities spend money legally; additionally sometimes the auditor needs to say if funds are being spent responsibly. Higher education costs have skyrocketed, and powerful constituencies within universities sometimes promote spending that benefits a few but does not serve the broader social good. Performance auditing can help curb wasteful spending that increases the already too high cost of attending college.”

According to a news release from the state auditor’s office, “House Bill 384 would amend current law and grant the auditor of state’s office the authority to conduct performance audits of state institutions of higher education as one of the four required performance audits each biennium.”

The news release also states that like the performance audits of state agencies, institutions of higher education would be required to report to the General Assembly on any recommendations that are no implemented within three months after the end of the comment period.

“In the state budget this spring, we took steps towards reducing the cost of earning a college degree in Ohio,” Schaffer said. “Performance audits will continue that trend and will be a powerful tool for colleges and universities to make higher education more affordable.”

Yost issued the following statement on Wednesday following the passage of House Bill 384: “Performance audits get results — we’ve already provided more than a billion dollars in recommended savings in Ohio. Colleges and universities should receive these benefits as well. I appreciate the good work of Representatives Schaffer and Duffey on this bill, and I look forward to working with the Senate to make it law.”


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