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Last year, students complained loudly when the campus news delivery service failed to deliver copy after copy of the New York Times and the Boston Globe, but because of an administrative change, they may receive no papers at all next semester.
Having suffered financial trouble since its inception in 1975, Harvard Delivery News Service (HDNS) will be put out of its suffering for good this February, when officials in Dean Fox's office dissolve the debt-plagued organization. If Harvard Student Agencies (HSA) or some other group does not take over the service, it will cease.
Although HDNS still owes the Cambridge Trust Company more than $2000 because of last year's financial mismanagement, the service will reimburse all subscribers for the spring semester--and the College may end up having to bail HDNS out of debt for the second time, something Epps said last fall would never happen again.
Martha C. Coburn, associate dean of the College, said this week that she recommended the dissolution of HDNS after investigating the service's most recent rash of financial problems, which last spring included more than $14,500 in missing funds, of which $6000 to $7000 was allegedly embezzled by Martin Olive '78-4, HDNS manager until a year ago.
Coburn and the University auditors also discussed possible modifications of the use of College discretionary funds. Epps used $2000 of these funds last spring to cover HDNS without consulting any other administrators.
Coburn and University auditors working with her would like to see HSA-which has successfully delivered the Times and the Globe on campus during summer session--take responsibility for on-campus newspaper delivery.
But Coburn added that University officials may well ask HSA to pay a fee for the privilege of assuming delivery service, and final arrangements will not be made until HDNS and HSA officials meet next Tuesday to bargain over the financial details.
Fox--who commissioned the investigation and called the decision to abolish HDNS "ultimately my decision" --said this week he would like to see HSA take over the on campus newspaper delivery.
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