Ryerson University says it will withhold regular payments to the school’s student union until its members conduct a forensic audit of a $250,000 credit card bill amid allegations of financial mismanagement.
“Until the results of the forensic audit are available and there is greater transparency and confidence that the RSU is managing student fees responsibly and for their intended purposes, the university will withhold these fees,” the school said in a statement.
Senior leaders at the university met with the Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) board of directors Monday to discuss the allegations, which stem from a number of questionable purchases at places like the LCBO and a shisha lounge.
“The university is encouraged by the meeting that took place,” the statement says.
“While the university has no authority to conduct an independent investigation into RSU finances, it is the university’s view that the RSU must comply with its bylaws, policies, and the law,” the statement reads.
University officials have requested that results from the audit be provided in full to the school’s administration.
RSU to negotiate new payment agreement
The school has also asked the RSU to start negotiating new terms and conditions of the transfer payment agreement between the university and the union, to ensure “a model of a good governance and accountability” that will put students first.
The RSU is a separate entity from the school, with its own corporate governance structure. Students pay fees, which are transferred in regular instalments to the RSU. The school says more transparency is required to ensure students’ money is spent responsibly.
“Directors and officers have a duty to act honestly and in good faith with a view to the best interests of the RSU and students,” the statement reads.