WMU News

Trustees appoint auditor, refund bonds, grant easements

Jan. 19, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- Western Michigan University's Board of Trustees today approved the appointment of Plante & Moran as the University's external auditor for the current fiscal year, which ends June 30.

Trustees appoint external auditors on an annual basis to conduct WMU's annual financial audit. A request for proposals was sent to six firms, and Plante & Moran LLP and Andrews Hooper & Pavlik PLC responded with proposals.

According to Robert M. Beam, WMU's vice president for business and finance, both firms have extensive experience working with universities. Plante & Moran was chosen, he said, because of the high caliber of professionals that will be assigned to the project, as well as the exemplary audit services the firm has provided to the University in the past.

Deloitte & Touche has provided audit services to WMU for the past three fiscal years.

In other business, trustees authorized University administrators to refund a set of 1991B General Revenue Bonds valued at $18.45 million. In 1999, the University executed a note agreement on the bond for $4.75 million, which was also approved for refinancing. Beam told trustees that recent rallies in the bond market have made refinancing the note and bonds -- the only outstanding University obligations eligible to be refunded -- an attractive option.

The Board of Trustees also approved two easement agreements at the meeting. One easement will allow Consumers Energy access across University property for underground electric and gas facilities for the next phase of University apartments on Emajean Street in Kalamazoo. The second agreement authorized the realignment of the intersection at University Drive and Claystone Street to allow for improved drainage near WMU's Grand Rapids Regional Center.

Media contact: Jessica English, 616 387-8400, jessica.english@wmich.edu

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