MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – An independent investigation of Wheeling Jesuit University's billing practices for federal grants and programs in 2008 found no violations of laws or regulations, the school's president said Wednesday.
President Rick Beyer said the Board of Trustees voted Wednesday to turn that report over to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Wheeling, adding that the Northern Panhandle Catholic school is cooperating in the investigation.
Federal investigators are looking into whether the university and a vice president, former Mine Safety and Health Administration chief J. Davitt McAteer, conspired to use millions of federal grant and program dollars from NASA and other federal agenices for personal gain.
Some of the allegations against the school and one of the world's foremost experts on mine safety are contained in an affidavit filed by an agent in the NASA Office of Inspector General.
Beyer, who issued a similar statement to the Jesuit community late Wednesday, said the administration could only speculate on the focus of the investigation until an affidavit in the case was unsealed. It then decided to release the 2008 report.
The university's audit committee requested that review by "independent, special counsel experienced in federal grants who had served as general counsel for a major research university," Beyer said.
That person, who was not named in Beyer's statement, "determined the university's cost-allocation method to be permissible under federal regulations and found no improprieties."