- Associated Press - Saturday, November 19, 2016

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - If lawmakers explicitly empower Ohio’s auditor to review the performance of state colleges and universities to help boost their efficiency, Ohio State University is offering to be first on the list.

State Auditor Dave Yost must audit the performance of at least four state agencies every two years. Should pending legislation pass, one of those would have to be a public two- or four-year college.

Ohio State will submit to the audit if that happens, university and the auditor’s office has said.

University officials say the audit aligns with the school’s goal of generating $400 million over five years by streamlining operations and tapping new resources.

“Ohio State is devoted to finding administrative efficiencies that can be redirected into cost savings or quality improvements,” Geoff Chatas, the university’s senior vice president for business and finance, said in a statement. “We have made significant progress, but we welcome the additional resources that Auditor Yost can bring to our existing efficiency work.”

The audit would probably focus on areas including information technology systems and support, fleet management and food service, officials say.

Such reviews wouldn’t involve how the universities write curriculum or conduct research.

“It’s more along the lines of what you would get if you went to a consultant,” Yost recently told The Columbus Dispatch.

Yost said his office looks forward to helping his alma mater. He hopes the bill, which cleared the House in January, passes the legislature before the end of the year.

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