2nd audit says ex-ASU chancellor may have violated law

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JONESBORO, Ark. (AP) — A second audit report concerning former Arkansas State University Chancellor Tim Hudson, released Thursday, says he may have violated a state law in his efforts to get tuition assistance for an unidentified family member.

The audit report said the state law prohibits a public servant from using his official position to gain special privileges for himself, family members or anyone with whom the official has a "substantial financial relationship."

Hudson resigned Tuesday after the first audit report, released last week, criticized ASU's study abroad program that was run by his wife, Deidra Hudson, who resigned last month.

A phone call to a number listed in Hudson's name was not answered.

Documents released Thursday showed three examples auditors said might be violations of the state law.

In one, emails sent from November through January showed Hudson attempting to obtain tuition discounts for a family member to attend the New York Institute of Technology, which Arkansas State is partnering with to bring an osteopathic medical school to Jonesboro.

Other emails contained in the report discuss costs and seeks financial assistance from Loyola University New Orleans and the University of South Alabama.

In a statement about the second audit, ASU System President Charles Welch said the internal audit process "functioned properly and successfully."

"The office received anonymous complaints on our system hotline and immediately initiated detailed reviews," Welch said. "We are disappointed in the findings and will take appropriate steps to prevent future incidents — as we always do following audits."

The latest audit report also said Hudson failed to "include gifts and nongovernmental sources of payment related to a trip to Spain" in a statement of interest filed for 2012. It said he took a similar trip to Spain in 2014, but that the Arkansas Secretary of State's website did not show that a statement of interest was filed for that year.

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