ATO house recycled

Ball State has taken control of the former Alpha Tau Omega house, located at 200 North McKinley Ave. and plans on disposing of the property quickly, Associate Vice President of Finance & Assistant Treasurer for the university Tom Spangler said.

"We're not interested in running a fraternity or rental property," Spangler said.

The university plans to sell the property as soon as possible or trade it for another property in the community that it does wish to occupy, Spangler said.

The university has no plans to move any department or offices into the former ATO house, according to Spangler.

Although the process of turning over ownership from ATO to Ball State will take 30-60 days, the university is taking control of the property in order to protect its asset, Spangler said.

The university took over payments on the bank loan for the house after ATO was unable to make the payments. This is in accordance with an agreement between the fraternity and Ball State when the house was built in 1992, Spangler said.

He also said that Ball State encourages fraternities to build houses, and will guarantee loans to do so.

The agreements are made between the Board of Trustees and the fraternities. Ball State currently has 5 such agreements, Spangler said.

He also said the university has only had to step in in a similar situation one other time. This situation was only temporary, and the fraternity was able to repay the university after only one or two months of defaulted payments and continue occupying the house, Spangler said.

ATO moved out of the house May 15 after defaulting on four mortgage payments. The fraternity has also been placed on suspension for two years, and does not have a current active chapter on campus.

Former ATO president Glenn Warren blames a recent decrease in membership due to a general decline in interest in the greek community as a whole for their financial troubles.

At one time ATO had over 80 members. At the time the fraternity moved out, the memberships had decreased to 25 members.

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