June 8, 2001

Contact: Bob Bruce, 503-725-5714

Board Approves SOU Property Sale

LA GRANDE - The State Board of Higher Education Friday (June 8) approved the sale of a 40.48 acre surplus property owned by Southern Oregon University, Ashland, over a request from the City of Ashland to impose additional requirements on the sale.

The property will be sold to Barbara Coffman of Ashland at an appraised price of $890,000, pending approval by Jackson County Planning Commission of an application to develop it as subdivision of five-acre lots. Proceeds from the sale will be used by SOU for educational purposes. Tentative plans include development of an outdoor native plant laboratory at the university.

In a letter to the Board, Ashland City Attorney Paul Nolte asked that conditions be imposed on the sale. Officials wanted the Board to require the buyer to comply with City of Ashland development standards, even though the property lies totally outside the city's boundaries. The tract is surrounded by a hillside residential development.

The 40.48 acres were originally donated to SOU in 1939. SOU declared it as surplus property in 1994 and offered it for sale at that time. The City of Ashland declared an interest in the property at that time but later withdrew its interest after three years of unsuccessful price negotiations.

In other action the Board:

Approved a new Master of Music degree in intermedia music technology at the University of Oregon and two new certificate programs at Southern Oregon University. The new UO degree will be available immediately and will offer graduate study for students interested in combining music and computer technology. SOU will offer new certificates in botany and Native American studies effective Fall 2001.
Authorized renaming of the University Inn at the University of Oregon in honor of retired housing director H. P. Barnhart, who retired in 1979 after 30 years service to the university. Barnhart guided the development of UO student housing during its most dramatic growth in history.
Adopted a temporary administrative rule that will allow dependents of military personnel to be eligible for resident tuition status at Oregon's seven public universities. The temporary rule anticipates a similar proposed change in state law.
Elected Board members Tom Imeson, Jim Lussier, Phyllis Wustenberg, Don VanLuvanee and Leslie Lehman to serve as members of the Executive Committee.

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