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Friday, March 9, 2012

More News on PSU's Bad Bookkeeping

Posted by Nathan Gilles on Fri, Mar 9, 2012 at 8:59 AM

Since our blog and print story detailing a series of student layoffs following budget problems in PSU’s Office of Information Technology (OIT), we have received numerous comments and emails saying we were correct in suspecting things weren’t quite right with the department’s books. Sources told us OIT head Sharon Blanton hadn’t fully reviewed the budgets presented to her by OIT accountant David Atalig. Now, we have still more evidence.

As published first by the PSU Vanguard—guys, we will cite you even if you don’t cite us—a 2011 Oregon University System (OUS) audit shows that yes, things were looking pretty crummy for OIT.

The OUS audit (PDF) paints a stark picture—with one very colorful graph (see below)—showing OIT’s economic sustainability in 2011 was near “Catastrophic” (OUS’s term). The resulting impacts, shows the colorful graph, were expected to be “Serious,” which naturally was marked by a gradation of orange to red.

Of course OUS’s other IT departments—represented on another very colorful graph—weren’t much better off. Estimates for university IT departments statewide were classified between “Disastrous” and “Catastrophic.’’(OUS’s metric rates catastrophes as slightly worse than disasters).

So if our sources are right about OIT’s bad bookkeeping, while things have been lousy for everybody, it looks like Blanton and Atalig decided to take that extra step. Who knows, maybe one day OIT will go from being in the red to being in the pink (see graph for full joke details).

ColorfulOITbudgetgraph.png

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