ACU pays $8m to Sydney Archdiocese

The Australian Catholic University last week paid $5m to the Archdiocese of Sydney, which represents the first instalment of a $8 million leasing fee to enable the university to continue to occupy the land where the North Sydney and Strathfield campuses are located.

Online Catholics reports that the second part of the fee, $3 million, will be due to the Archdiocese in 2010.

It says the deal concludes several months of tension between the University and the Archdiocese.

Last August Cardinal Pell confirmed that the ACU would be asked to pay more rent to the Archdiocese the same week it announced that the Archdiocese would give Fremantle's University of Notre Dame $5 million in direct cash support for its proposed Sydney campus.

Notre Dame was also given the use of church buildings and land worth $20 million in a highly sought-after area just 10 minutes from Sydney's CBD, and $4m from the Federal Government for new places in medicine, teaching, law and nursing.

ACU Vice Chancellor Professor Peter Sheehan was not available for comment yesterday. But sources say that the University has had to borrow to pay the debt, in addition to spending $750,000 from their capital works grant. $750,000 will have to be found every year "for a very long time", according to insiders.

It is understood that there is no plan to reduce ACU staff or services but the question of HECS charges may need to be reviewed.

Pictured: Strathfield Campus (left), and North Sydney Campus

ACU pays $8m to Sydney Archdiocese (Online Catholics 1/6/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
ACU National | Strathfield | North Sydney

Pell in rent bargain with Australian Catholic University (CathNews 9/9/04)

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32 Jun 2005