The Education Inspectorate has asked four universities and four universities of applied sciences to explain certain entries on their board members’ expense claims. The names of the institutions in question have not been released.

RTL previously reported that board members at universities and universities of applied sciences sometimes got refunds for unusual expense claims, such as costly office chairs and long journeys in company cars. Expenses claimed at EUR didn’t amount to much: a couple of glasses of wine and a few official trips to one of the board president’s other employers, which the university said had already been settled. RTL’s news item resulted in immediate investigations by the Education Inspectorate.

Claim forms must be filled in properly

The Inspectorate concluded that board members should fill in their expense claims forms properly, but it also admitted that the regulations aren’t clear enough. Minister of Education Jet Bussemaker added that universities and universities of applied sciences should first make clear agreements on submitting expense claims. She said there was no point in wasting time and money on carrying out in-depth investigations whose outcome was uncertain anyway.

However, in some cases accountants at certain institutions had already remarked that board members did not comply with their own regulations. The institutions concerned were four universities and four or five universities of applied sciences, and the Inspectorate has announced its intention to make further inquiries.

Follow-up investigations

The Inspectorate is carrying out these investigations right now, at eight institutions whose names have not yet been released. “We still have to find out what exactly these accountants have based their comments on,” a spokesperson said. “And then we can carry out follow-up investigations into the spending of public funds.” We’ll just have to wait and see whether this actually happens.