University of Central Florida Fires Four Top Officials Over Misspending
An inappropriate spending scandal at the University of Central Florida (UCF) has forced university officials to fire four top administrators.
The latest development comes days after a report on the building of Trevor Colbourn Hall was submitted by a former federal prosecutor who conducted the investigation.
The four employees fired in the administration and finance division were vice president of debt and revenue John Pittman, university controller Christy Tant, associate vice president of finance Tracy Clark, and associate vice president of facilities Lee Kernek.
President emeritus John Hitt also tendered his resignation after the report found that $85 million of projects had been built or were planned to be built with money allocated for different operations, according to Florida Today.
While none of the officials personally profited from the improper spending, the report alleged them of not placing “enough value on integrity and competence.”
“We know inappropriate spending was not isolated to Trevor Colbourn Hall. In all, construction projects totaling about $85 million were either built or planned to be built, with inappropriate funds,” university president Dale Whittaker said in a release.
“I read the report carefully. What I saw was a broken culture in one of our areas where UCF’s core values were not embraced. Because this is a matter of culture — and not a singular problem — our solutions have to be comprehensive and reaffirm our values. With that in mind, earlier today I began the termination process for four administrators in the Administration and Finance division.”
In response to the misspending, the university is creating a new post of Chief Accountability Officer. This person will oversee the University’s Compliance, Ethics and Risk Office and separate the position of vice president for administration and finance from the CFO position to ensure independent fiscal oversight in the future.