Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
(Trent Nelson | Tribune file photo) Former Lt. Gov. Greg Bell and Gov. Gary Herbert
Bell appointed as USTAR chair; director resigns
October audit » State-funded economic development effort inflated jobs, revenue.
First Published Jan 06 2014 05:49 pm • Last Updated Jan 06 2014 10:15 pm

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert announced a leadership shake-up Monday at a state economic development effort under scrutiny in recent months for inflating its results.

Former Lt. Gov. Greg Bell took over Jan. 1 as chair of the Utah Science Technology and Research (USTAR) Governing Authority.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

Executive director Ted McAleer also resigned. The governing authority is expected to begin searching for his replacement at a regular meeting Thursday.

The program was created in 2006 to leverage research at Utah’s universities into economic development for the state. Some $334 million in tax dollars have been invested in building facilities and attracting researchers to the University of Utah and Utah State University since then, but an October audit found USTAR had been over-reporting the number of jobs it created by thousands and exaggerating the amount of revenue it brought in by millions of dollars.

The agency plans to make changes to fix those issues, but is waiting for a third-party review of the audit to be completed by Tanner, LLC., and presented to the Utah Legislature, said USTAR spokesman Justin Berry. McAleer didn’t dispute the findings in October, citing record-keeping problems and a series of short-lived financial managers. Hesaid Monday his decision to resign was unrelated to the audit.

"I’ve been talking about the right time to leave for the last couple of years, and now I believe it’s time to give Greg Bell the opportunity to do what he wants with his leadership team," said McAleer. He previously worked in technology commercialization at the U. and is now planning to pursue educational or medical technology in the private sector.

McAleer will stay on for up to 90 days, until his replacement is found. The position pays an annual salary of approximately $117,500, according to public records.

Bell will replace Dinesh Patel, a businessman and investor who "is considered by many to be the father of biotechnology and pharmaceuticals in the Mountain West region," according to his USTAR biography. Patel’s term is due to end in June; the position is unpaid. He declined to comment Monday.

"Dinesh’s position was coming to the fruition of his term, so that had to happen. I can’t speak for why the governor chose to do that now," Berry said.

Bell stepped down as lieutenant governor in September, citing the need to shore up his retirement savings. He was hired the following month as president and CEO of the Utah Hospital Association.


story continues below
story continues below

"I was in the Legislature when we created USTAR, and I have followed its progress since then," Bell said in a statement. "I’m pleased with the firm foundation now in place and I believe USTAR will provide great value to Utah’s economy and job market over the next several years."

lwhitehurst@sltrib.com

Twitter: @sltrib.com



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.