Rep. Thompson Votes For Legislation Allowing Performance Audits At State Colleges And Universities
HB 384 designed to increase efficiency, lower costs of earning a degree
January 27, 2016
 
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During today’s session, State Representative Andy Thompson (R-Marietta) voted in favor of House Bill 384, legislation that gives the Auditor of State the authority to conduct performance audits of state universities, as well as state, community and technical colleges. The legislation is geared at increasing efficiency and identifying cost-saving measures in Ohio’s higher education system.


“These audits have tremendous benefits to the taxpayer and to the institution audited,” Thompson said. “The goal is improved efficiency and return on each dollar spent. This is a very positive step.”


HB 384 is an accountability measure providing oversight on approximately $1.9 billion of general revenue spending in the state’s higher education system. The potential cost-saving components of the bill come at a time when the price of earning a degree continues to rise for Ohio’s college students.


Since 2011, performance audits of school districts have uncovered about $77 million in potential savings. The same improvements are true for audits of state agencies, including identifying $11.6 million in savings on operating expenses at the Ohio Department of Transportation.


State colleges and universities are currently exempt from the requirement of performance audits. Under the legislation, a performance audit of a state institution of higher learning would count as one of the four performance audits that the State Auditor is required to conduct every two years. In addition, a university that has been audited would be required to accept comments from interested parties and make them publicly available.


If signed into law, Ohio would join seven other states that conduct higher education performance audits. The bill now awaits consideration in the Ohio Senate.


 

 
 
 
  
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