Chicago's NPR News Source

Audit: Chicago State University Improperly Reported Awards

An audit of Chicago State University by Illinois’ auditor general has found that the embattled school improperly reported nearly $52 million in federal awards.

The report, by the state’s Auditor General Frank Mautino, said the university didn’t properly prepare expenditure reports — as required by federal law — for federal awards of more than $51.7 million for two loan programs from the U.S. Department of Education.

Chicago State University

Officials at Chicago State University last year declared a financial emergency at the school that largely serves black students.

Charles Rex Arbogast

An audit of Chicago State University by Illinois’ auditor general has found that the embattled school improperly reported nearly $52 million in federal awards.

The report, by the state’s Auditor General Frank Mautino, said the university didn’t properly prepare expenditure reports — as required by federal law — for federal awards of more than $51.7 million for two loan programs from the U.S. Department of Education.

The report said two awards from the Department of Health and Human Services related to a program for providing training and education to eligible individuals for health-care related professions were also improperly classified. The school is required to identify all federal awards received and expended, as well as the federal programs under which they’re received in its accounts.

University officials responded, saying they agreed but that the school had properly reported the loan amounts within the “footnotes” of their report, The Chicago Sun-Times reported.

The audit also found that 15 percent of employees weren’t eligible for accrued leave but were included on a leave schedule. The university reported absences totaling nearly $151,000, and the report said the auditor’s finding had been repeated since 2011.

In a statement, university officials said it is working to stabilize finances, but also blamed the budget impasse.

“We have made great progress in stabilizing the university’s finances even with the absence of a state budget or comparable funding as compared to prior years,” Interim President Cecil B. Lucy said in the statement. “We will continue to make improvements to ensure efficient and effective operations.”

The Latest
“Street tracks are different every year, no matter where you go,” Shane van Gisbergen said. “The burial location is always different, whether inside the curb or on top of it. The track always changes.”
NASCAR has unveiled its first electric racecar in Chicago. One test driver said the sound and smell were unlikely anything he’d previously experienced.
NASCAR Chicago Street Race begins this weekend, and sections of DuSable Lake Shore Drive and Michigan Avenue have closed to make way for the event.
Some small business owners said they plan to close during the two-day event, but others are excited about the race and the boost in pedestrian traffic that could bring more sales.
The San Diego-based chain is planning to open eight 24-hour restaurants in the city and suburbs in 2025 and 2026. One will be near Midway Airport, with the rest in the suburbs.