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BY DI STAFF | AUGUST 18, 2011 7:20 AM

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Regents approve raises

The state Board of Regents approved a 4 percent raise for all three regent university presidents at its Aug. 4 meeting.

University of Iowa President Sally Mason's annual salary increased by $18,600 to $483,600. Her five-year deferred-compensation package increased $25,000 to a total of $150,000.

Iowa State University President Gregory Geoffroy's annual pay increased by $16,920 to $440,248.
University of Northern Iowa President Ben Allen's salary increased $12,800 to $332,800. His five-year deferred compensation package increased $20,000 to a total of $70,000.

Robert Donnelly, the regents' executive director, called the pay raises "modest" and said they were based on the performance of each president.

— by Allie Wright

UI party-school ranking increases

Despite the recent introduction of the University of Iowa's Alcohol Harm Reduction Plan, the UI still ranked in the top 10 in the Princeton Review's top party schools for 2012.

The UI ranked fourth, tailing Ohio University, the University of Georgia, and the University of Mississippi.

According to the Review's website, the list is compiled by polling more than 122,000 students. In 2011, the University of Iowa placed ninth.

The Harm Reduction plan, released Dec. 6, aimed to lower the binge-drinking rate by 15 percent within three years. Officials intended to lower dangerous drinking through four main goals, which included attracting low-risk drinkers to the university, improving alcohol education, aiding alcohol abusers, and holding them accountable.

— by Hayley Bruce

UI Foundation has second-highest fundraising year

The University of Iowa Foundation and the university announced $213.9 million in gifts and gift commitments in fiscal 2011. It was the second-best fundraising year for the foundation, behind only the university's 2005 $1 billion "Good. Better. Best. Iowa." campaign, which took in $227 million.

In a UI press release, UI Foundation President and CEO Lynette Marshall said she is happy with the overall contributions in light of the current economic climate. The donations made in fiscal 2011 created 70 new student scholarships, 23 new research funds, 71 new program funds, and 12 faculty positions, she said.

Earlier this year, the UI Foundation announced its endowment had surpassed the $1 billion mark for the first time in the university's history.

— by Alison Sullivan

 School District to hire auditor

The Iowa City School District will hire an outside auditor to review its operational processes.

The decision comes after a $2 million bookkeeping error was discovered in the end-of-the-year reconciliation, in which the district's revenues and expenditures were reviewed.

Superintendent Stephen Murley said before a vendor is chosen, a contract must be approved by the School Board.

District officials said they are looking for a firm with public-sector experience that will help the schools maintain efficient operations. Officials have narrowed their selection to three firms.

"Preferably, the firm has experience working in the School District so it can look through and look on the operations side of the house, not just the education component," Murley said.

He said he would like to see the audit start shortly after the beginning of the school year.

"I'm hopeful that what we wind up doing is making changes to the processes we use in the district," he said. "The intended outcome is more accuracy throughout the district and better service."

— by Brittany Trevick

Dance Marathon wins awards

The University of Iowa Dance Marathon received two awards at the National Dance Marathon Leadership Conference in Oklahoma City, Okla., in July. The UI organization received Best Event T-shirt and the Ryan White Overcoming Adversity award.

Dance Marathon is a student-led organization that supports pediatric patients and their families and has a presence at 11 universities and colleges throughout Iowa. The organization holds an annual dance each year to raise funds for the University of Iowa Children's Hospital through the Children's Miracle Network. Collectively, Dance Marathon raises nearly $1.7 million annually for the UI Children's Hospital.

— by Alison Sullivan

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