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Board of Trustees to Hold Special Meeting on Thursday to Discuss Pending Litigation

by on April 06, 2015 10:08 AM

The Penn State Board of Trustees just met last month, but an unnamed lawsuit demands attention before the next regularly scheduled get-together.

The board will hold a special teleconference meeting on Thursday at 10:30 a.m. to discuss the “possible settlement of pending litigation,” according to a Penn State news release.

Board member Anthony Lubrano says that board chairman Keith Masser called the special meeting, but was unable to provide details about what litigation will be discussed.

“We don’t have any more details beyond the notice that’s already gone out,” Lubrano says.

Penn State spokesperson Lisa Powers says the litigation is still considered pending, and is unable to comment on the nature of the litigation or any potential settlement. She adds that the special meeting will be live-streamed on WPSU for public viewing.

The university is currently involved in a number of lawsuits that could be the subject of Thursday’s meeting.

Former state legislator Jess Stairs is currently suing the board of trustees over what he claims was a botched election that cost him a seat on the board. A hearing was held in that lawsuit last month, although the attorneys did not discuss any possible settlement.

Penn State is also involved in several lawsuits that came out of the Sandusky scandal. Former wide receiver coach Mike Queary is currently fighting a whistleblower lawsuit with the university, which has been progressing slowly through court since 2012.

Penn State is also still a party to the lawsuit between the estate of former head football coach Joe Paterno and the National Collegiate Athletic Association. However, the university is only a nominal defendant in that lawsuit and is less directly involved than the other parties.

At the March meeting of the board of trustees, Lubrano had planned to discuss some concerns he had about the January settlement in lawsuit between state senator Jake Corman and the NCAA. However, Lubrano says that will not come up on Thursday, and will instead be discussed at the regularly scheduled May board meeting.

The last time a special meeting of the board was called, alumni-elected trustees arranged it and the majority of the board did not attend – which highlighted the divide between appointed and alumni-elected trustees. Lubrano expects Thursday to be a different story.

“I expect this one to be fully attended,” Lubrano says. “This meeting is telephonic, so there’s no excuse not to be there, and since this was called by Chairman Masser, I imagine the majority will certainly participate out of respect.”

Editor's note: This story has been updated to include comment from Lisa Powers, who responded to questions on behalf of Keith Masser.

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Michael Martin Garrett is a reporter and editor for StateCollege.com who covers local government, the courts, the arts and writes the Keeping the Faith column. He's a Penn State alumnus, a published poet and the bassist in a local indie rock band.
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