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Divinity School Accused of Improper Spending

October 19, 2002|From Times Wire Services

A 10-month investigation by the Connecticut attorney general said sloppy accounting practices at an Episcopal divinity school allowed money to be misspent on personal expenses when it should have gone toward scholarships.

Atty. Gen. Richard Blumenthal said reforms and reparations are needed to ensure that Berkeley Divinity School does not "continue to engage in practices that place its charitable assets at risk."

The school, closely affiliated with Yale University, came under fire last year after an internal Yale audit found "a complete lack of internal controls" on spending. Former Dean William Franklin received personal loans, which apparently were not paid back, and money for his daughter's tuition, dry cleaning and a trip to Colorado.

Franklin resigned on Jan. 1, but school officials insisted he was not fired. Bishop Frederick Borsch, the acting dean, told Episcopal News Service that "nothing illegal or seriously unethical was done, but poor judgment was used, and poor standards were in place."

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