ORANGEBURG COUNTY, SC (WIS) - A report from the state inspector general's office did not identify any sort of fraud that led to the fiscal crisis currently gripping South Carolina State University.
Instead, the report confirms allegations from a whistle blower that accused university officials of inappropriately diverting state public service activity funds to cover cash flow and deficit problems.
The report says funding mismanagement only furthered SC State's money troubles and also deprived a program's access to funds meant to help those with limited resources.
Finally, the inspector general's report says the university should repay about $6.5 million.
Months ago, the university asked the state legislature for $13 million to help pay the bills through June. The report agrees that an infusion of cash is necessary to help SC State.
"It is clear SCSU has a short-term cash infusion need to address the short-term deficit crisis, which if not, the situation could evolve into a crisis of confidence creating unintended consequences further undermining future student enrollment," said the report.
University officials released a statement late Tuesday afternoon, saying they appreciated the inspector general's work to "bring transparency to a lingering financial issue that has plagued this University for more than eight years."
"The report clearly indicates that there was no fraud whatsoever in the expenditure of 1890 Research and Extension Program funds," said the statement. "The University has proactively taken steps to ensure that moving forward federal funds from the 1890 Program are kept in a separate account and that this practice will not be repeated."