Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Auditors Question Donor's Arrangement With ASU

This report from Anne Ryman at The Arizona Republic illustrates that we as Advancement and Development Services Professionals need to be diligent in making sure our institutions follow common practices and standards so there would be no hint of impropriety. Even if the IRS rules that these donations are legal gifts, one has to agree that the arrangement could be viewed as unethical.

Donor's ASU deal questioned
Gifts bought art from his firm

Anne Ryman
The Arizona Republic
Sept. 9, 2007 12:00 AM

Auditors are raising questions about whether the Arizona State University Art Museum had an improper arrangement with a philanthropist for handling his donations.

The museum received $450,000 over seven years from the donor and, under an arrangement with him, used the money to buy art from the donor's company, a university audit found.

The arrangement, which was discontinued after the June audit, allowed Stephane Janssen to receive personal-income-tax deductions for charitable donations, Janssen said. In at least one case, the museum possibly paid more than fair market value for Janssen's artworks, the audit found. ASU officials question that view.

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