Gee said in a letter to the Ethics Commission last month that the omissions brought to his attention led to a full review of the travel expenses and a revamping of the university’s internal processes for tracking expenditures and travel costs within the president’s office.
Gee’s travel expenses in the last two years included two trips to China and two other international trips to Iceland, Turkey, France and the United Kingdom. Additionally, King Abdulaziz University in Saudi Arabia spent $36,095 on two trips for Gee. Gee sits on the university’s international board of advisers.
Gee’s contract with the OSU Board of Trustees calls for first-class domestic flights, business class international flights and access to corporate jet travel through NetJets.
Ohio State pays $22,500 per month for an ownership share in NetJets and a fixed rental rate of $7,941 per month, plus $1,950 per flight hour. The university contracts for 150 flight hours per year, with up to 100 of those hours earmarked for Gee’s use. The contract allows for the use of Cessna Citation Excel jets, which carry between seven and 10 passengers.
At Ohio State Gee oversees an enterprise with a $5 billion budget, 65,000 students and 48,000 employees. Although the university has many funding sources, state taxpayers contributed more than $421 million to Ohio State during the 2011 fiscal year.