University of Bridgeport’s just released 2018-19 finances show a ship in distress

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BRIDGEPORT — The University of Bridgeport spent $8.3 million more than it made in the 2018-19 fiscal year and burned through $8.7 million of its modest endowment, according to a fiscal filing by the university recently made public.

The federal Internal Revenue Service documents released late last month shows that UB ended the fiscal year in June 2019 with a $25.2 million endowment. Two years prior, its endowment was at $37 million, its highest level in decades.

The 2018-19 fiscal year was the first and only full year of former UB President Laura Trombley’s tenure. She left in April, having served 18 months.

Just before her departure, Trombley sent an email to the university community on March 30 saying the university anticipated an operating deficit in the 2019-20 fiscal year of approximately $12.5 million. The filing for that year has not yet been released.

If the expected losses held true, it likely would have cut the university’s $25 million endowment in half.

At the time, Trombley said the loss came despite efforts to renegotiate vendor contracts, reduce the campus footprint and close buildings.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, UB laid off 33 employees and furloughed 93 others, according to Trombley. Other staff took pay cuts.

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“To accomplish our goal of a non-deficit budget by the end of the academic year 2021, we will continue to decrease costs and grow revenues,” Trombley wrote in the March email.

Three days later, Trombley was introduced as the new president of Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas.

Acting UB President Stephen Healey, who was provost during Trombley’s tenure, said Friday he was willing to speak about the IRS form, but then reneged to prepare for a Board of Trustees meeting, he said. On Monday, he said he, along with UB’s chief financial officer


Amway College Football Poll 2020: Complete Week 6 Rankings Released | Bleacher Report

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Texas running back Keaontay Ingram (26) reacts after he was stopped short of a touchdown on a run against TCU during the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

Eric Gay/Associated Press

So much for the college football Top 25 stabilizing.

While each of the nation’s Top Five teams remain unbeaten, upsets across the sport elsewhere sent the latest Amway Coaches Poll into a state of flux.  

Here is a look at how the entire Top 25 played out:

1. Clemson

2. Alabama

T-3. Georgia

T-3. Florida

5. Notre Dame

6. Ohio State

7. Miami

8. Penn State

9. North Carolina

10. Oklahoma State

11. Cincinnati

12. Tennessee

13. Auburn

14. Wisconsin

15. BYU

16. LSU

17. Oregon

18. Virginia Tech

19. Michigan

20. Texas A&M

21. SMU

22. Texas

23. UL Lafayette  

24. Iowa State

25. UCF

Auburn and Texas were the two Top 10 teams to fall, with the Tigers moving back six slots to No. 13 and the Longhorns dropping all the way to No. 22. 

Georgia turned in a dominant performance in the biggest SEC game of the young season to earn a 27-6 win over Auburn. The Bulldogs held Auburn to just 216 total yards and rushed for 202 yards as a team, highlighted by Zamir White’s 88 yards and two scores.

Stetson Bennett threw for 240 yards and a touchdown in a steady performance that will likely help him keep the starting quarterback job for the foreseeable future.

“It’s so easy to play football when the defense plays as well as they did, when you run the ball as well as we did, and the guys on the outside are making plays like they did,” Bennett told reporters.

A week after looking shaky in a shootout against Texas Tech, Texas fell apart down the stretch in a 33-31 loss to TCU. Longhorns running back Keaontay Ingram fumbled the ball at the TCU 1-yard line on what could have been the game-winning drive, finishing


USGS Director James Reilly released a study on polar bears he had stalled for months on Friday

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In response to the Post report, Reilly sent an email to his staff the next day, saying his decision to delay was justified because he wanted to be “satisfied” with its underlying science before making it public.

The study, which had been obtained by The Post last month, notes that shrinking sea ice in the Arctic threatens the survival of polar bears while enhancing the opportunity for fossil fuel exploration there. “The long-term persistence of polar bears (Ursus maritimus) is threatened by sea-ice loss due to climate change, which is concurrently providing an opportunity in the Arctic for increased anthropogenic activities including natural resource extraction,” it said.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service had been seeking the report’s release for at least three months, according to several individuals briefed on the matter who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations. The agency is legally required to cite the U.S. Geological Survey study before it can determine whether drilling can proceed on ConocoPhillips’ $3 billion Willow Project on Alaska’s North Slope without causing too much harm to the region’s polar bears, which are protected by federal law.

The analysis also finds that 34 percent of the western U.S. Arctic’s maternal dens are on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, which has implications for the Trump administration’s plans to auction oil and gas leases on the refuge. That is the same area the Interior Department approved for leasing in August, which has been off limits to drilling for four decades.

In an email to agency employees Thursday, Reilly confirmed that he had held up the study’s release but said it was wrong to suggest he did it “solely to benefit the oil and gas industry.”

“It is, however, an influential paper, and it will