Mississippi Valley State University has paid $85,800 so far for school president Donna Oliver to live in a loft apartment in Greenwood.Oliver was hired three years ago and continues to live in the temporary quarters nearly three years later. The official president’s residence on the Itta Bena campus has dry rot, a corroding kitchen floor and other problems that make it unlivable.Valley State will pay $2,600 per month through July 2012 for the off-campus housing.

The Legislature provided $900,000 in 2009 to build a new home.Tommy Verdell, MVSU’s facilities director, told the Greenwood Commonwealth ( http://bit.ly/s5uzFx) that construction bids came in too high and the school is considering whether to rebid.The original plan was for Oliver to live at the Alluivan, a boutique hotel in Greenwood.Zachary Faison, Valley’s chief of staff and executive assistant to the president, said Oliver’s two-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment is not in the Alluvian. He said it is located across the street. The lease is with the Viking Hospitality Group, an arm of appliance maker Viking Range Corp., which owns the Alluvian.The lease is for $2,600 per month, which equals $31,200 a year.Faison said Oliver is not living in the apartment of her own volition.”The president wants to get in a home,” he said.Oliver has lived in the apartment since she became Valley’s sixth president in January 2009. She was supposed to move into a home in March 2009, but the deal with owner Steve LaVere fell through.The homes of Mississippi’s public university presidents are intended for hosting visitors, receptions and other official functions. Expenses for operating them are paid by the university and not considered part of the president’s salary package. Copyright 2011 . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Information from: The Greenwood Commonwealth, http://www.gwcommonwealth.com