State College, PA - Centre County - Central Pennsylvania - Home of Penn State University

Commonwealth Court Denies Corman Mediation

by on June 26, 2013 6:50 AM

Sen. Jake Corman's fight to keep Penn State's $60 million fine in-state will stay in court. A Commonwealth judge denied the senator's request that his lawsuit against the NCAA be settled through mediation, because the NCAA says it doesn't want to go that route.

Corman sued the NCAA in January, asking a judge to order Penn State's entire $60 million fine stay within Pennsylvania. In February, Gov. Tom Corbett signed into law the "Endowment Act," which was designed to keep the money in the state treasury. The NCAA says that law is unconstitutional and wants the lawsuit dismissed.

Recently, Corman asked the court to allow his case to be handled by a mediator after Penn State sent a letter to all parties with pending lawsuits. The university asked that they find a way to resolve their legal disputes quickly and out-of-court. Penn State says it believes settling is best for everyone involved, including the victims of Jerry Sandusky. 

The court order was filed on Tuesday and says Corman's request for mediation was denied because "the [NCAA] is not willing to discuss let alone enter a process that could lead to a resolution of the matters involved." At a hearing last week to decide whether Corman's lawsuit should be dismissed, attorneys for the NCAA said they are not interested in mediation. 

No ruling has been issued on the hearing held in Harrisburg last week.

Penn State paid the first $12 installment of its $60 million fine into an escrow fund in December. It is only one of the penalties included in the sanctions handed out as a result of Sandusky's sex crimes. Penn State was also banned from postseason football games for four years. The university lost a significant number of football scholarships and all wins under former coach Joe Paterno were vacated between 1998-2011. 

The fine money will eventually be distributed to charities that support victims of sexual abuse, and Corman wants the funds to stay in Pennsylvania because all of the revenue is generated in-state. 

Sandusky, 69, was convicted last year on 45 of 48 counts of sexually abusing 10 boys over a 15-year period. He's serving a 30-60 year sentence in a state prison.

Laura Nichols is a news reporter and @LC_Nichols on Twitter.
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