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Legislators criticize UO on arena project

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High Five
Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A hearing before the state Senate’s Business and Transportation Committee explored UO's transparency, particularly with regards to recent decision in the athletic department.

The hearing was held to cover the university's arena project, but legislators had questions, most controversially about the $2.3 million buyout of former Athletic Director Mike Bellotti.

The arena project is controversial in part because of its size and the university’s decision to finance it using state-backed bonds. The UO has promised that the $227 million in bonds for construction and land will be repaid using arena and other athletic department revenues and that no public or tuition money will go to the project.

Some legislators were clearly irate at the UO’s failure to provide timely documentation on aspects of the project, including change orders. Change orders document agreed-upon changes to the original construction plans and sometimes involve substantially higher costs than originally estimated.

Read the whole story at the Register-Guard.

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