University of California to end lavish spending on dinners

The University of California has announced that it will no longer pay for the meals of the board of directors, after a newspaper reported lavish spending on dinners.

The San Francisco Chronicle reported Sunday that UC President Janet Napolitano’s office reimbursed regents for more than $225,000 in dinner parties since 2012, including $17,600 for a banquet held the night before the board voted to increase tuition fees.

UC board of Regents Chairman Monica Lozano and Napolitano said in a statement that the regents “absorb their costs for board dinners,” to avoid questions about how the money is spent.

The newspaper reports Monday the reversal was the idea of the regent Richard Blum.

Dinner costs are paid from a fund intended for the universities and companies, the costs not covered by the state or tuition funds.

Earlier this month, California Gov. Jerry Brown announced he was withholding $50 million from the University of California in the light of an audit in the last month that claimed to have found a stash of $175 million in secret funds, while the officials asked for more money from the state.

A state audit found that under the university system President Janet Napolitano, the former Department of Homeland Security chief, UC administrators hid $175 million from the public, while the increase of the tuition and asking the state for more money.

The UC board of Regents in January voted to increase in-state tuition and costs by $336 in the next academic year. Some lawmakers called for a reversal of the tuition hike in the wake of the audit.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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