USF Poly leader responds to senators' call for investigation, promises information
The embattled leader of the University of South Florida Polytechnic campus in Lakeland has responded to two senators' second call for an investigation into his spending.
Marshall Goodman now says he is "delighted" to provide the information Sens. Paula Dockery and Mike Fasano requested -- a different response than his first, when he essentially brushed the senators' off and directed them to State Auditor General's broad reports that found no "material weakness" in his campus's finances.
Dockery and Fasano asked Goodman for a complete and total audit of all the expenditures since he's became chancellor in 2006, including all contracts, consultants, vendors, leases, salaries, travel expenditures, student service fees and reserve accounts.
In a letter sent Tuesday (attached), Goodman says his office is quickly gathering public records and will respond as soon as possible. In the meantime, he directed the senators to the school's annual operating budgets, posted on USF's web site.
He also responded to two specific inquiries the senators included in their letter: Did USF Poly pay the spouse of any elected official for consulting, recruiting, or any any other purpose? And a request for more information about USF Poly's Blue Sky incubator programs.
Goodman said there is just one vendor at USF Poly who is affiliated to an elected official -- a promotional firm called Bagley Idea Pros that is owned by the spouse of a Lakeland City Commissioner. "This relationship was not established based on this affiliation and USF Polytechnic does not benefit from the relationship."
He touted Blue Sky's "spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship" and said he was working to gather more detailed information about the incubators' lease terms.
Lastly, he pointed out that as part of the USF system, every USF Poly expense must be approved by USF Tampa.