A federal grand jury has subpoenaed the bank records of Robert L. Green, the former University of the District of Columbia president, as part of an investigation of possible fraud and bribery by officials of Green's administration, sources said yesterday.
The request for Green's records was part of a wide-ranging subpoena served earlier this week on the National Bank of Washington, which administers the university's $10 million endowment fund, the sources said. The Washington Post reported Thursday that the grand jury was looking into the transfer of the endowment fund from American Security Bank to NBW.
A spokesman for NBW said the bank had received a subpoena but declined to comment yesterday on whether records of Green's personal dealings with the bank had been requested.
Joseph Webb, a UDC trustee, asked federal authorities Aug. 12 to investigate whether a finder's fee was given in exchange for the transfer of the account. Within two days, the U.S. attorney's office and the FBI launched investigations into the endowment and other questions about expenditures.
The Post reported Wednesday that a grand jury had begun an investigation and had subpoenaed UDC records of consulting contracts and employment contracts of top administrators hired by Green.
The wide-ranging subpoena served on NBW included requests for records of loans given by the bank to UDC Board Chairman Ronald H. Brown, who received two mortgage loans that were paid off before the transfer of the endowment fund.
Green was not available for comment on the subpoena of his bank records. University records show Green and his wife Lettie maintained a checking account with the bank, but other records of his bank dealings were unavailable. In addition, one of Green's sons held a summer job with the bank, sources said.
In other developments, the UDC board of trustees met with Mayor Marion Barry yesterday in preparation for a D.C. City Council hearing Monday on UDC spending irregularities. The trustees discussed the board's responses to questions that have been submitted to them by council members, according to Chairman Brown.
The hearing called by council member Hilda Mason (Statehood-At large), chairman of the Education Committee, is expected to focus on management of the university and the board's performance in overseeing expenditures.
Trustee Herbert O. Reid, Sr., who is also legal counsel to the mayor, said Barry told board members he expected to meet with them "periodically" in the future and that, while the board should operate independently, it was still "part of the structure of the District government."
Webb said Barry emphasized that a closer working relationship between the mayor and the board would be advantageous.
"He talked about how he had unified the school board," Webb said. " . . . He let it be known that The Washington Post would have you think that getting close to the mayor is like getting close to someone who has AIDS."
Barry's relationship to the board is an issue that hangs over the election on Tuesday of a new chairman, trustees have said. Two days before Green resigned Aug. 23, the mayor criticized the board for failing to adequately monitor the spending practices of the Green administration and indicated he would pay closer attention to university affairs. Reid is considered a front-runner for the post and is being challenged by trustee N. Joyce Payne.
Reid said the board was uncertain how to interpret the contract of UDC provost Maxie C. Jackson, a former associate of Green. Jackson's contract says he is to serve "coterminously" with Green, but, Reid said, trustees did not know whether that meant his contract should have terminated when Green resigned or should continue until Green's contract officially ends three years from now.