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Penn State, Board of Trustees Issue Statement, Will Address Freeh Report Thursday Afternoon

by on July 12, 2012 6:00 AM

Updated at 9:45 a.m.

DUNMORE, Pa. – Penn State spokesman Dave La Torre said the university will offer its reaction to the Freeh report's revelations at 3:30 p.m. Thursday. 

The press conference will be held at the Hilton Scranton & Conference Center in Scranton, Pa.

Penn State's full initial remarks, received at 9:17 a.m., are available below:

"Today with the report released by Judge Louis Freeh, the Penn State Board of Trustees delivered on the commitment we made last November when we engaged Judge Freeh to conduct an independent investigation into the University's actions regarding former Penn State employee, Jerry Sandusky, and the handling of allegations of the child abuse crimes of which he has since been found guilty.Judge Freeh and his team conducted a rigorous eight month investigation into all aspects of the University's actions to determine where breakdowns occurred and what changes should be made for the future. We like many others have eagerly anticipated Judge Freeh's Report of the findings of his investigation.

His 267 page report has just been released at http://thefreehreportonpsu.com/home2/ and we are currently reviewing his findings and recommendations. We expect a comprehensive analysis of our policies, procedures and controls related to identifying and reporting crimes and misconduct, including failures or gaps that may have allowed alleged misconduct to go undetected or unreported. We will provide our initial response later today.

We want to ensure we are giving the report careful scrutiny and consideration before making any announcements or recommendations. We are convening an internal team comprising the Board of Trustees, University administration and our legal counsel to begin analyzing the report and digesting Judge Freeh's findings.

As we anticipate the review and approval process will take some time, our initial response and immediate next steps will be presented at 3:30 at the Dayton/Taylor Conference Room at the Hilton Scranton & Conference Center.

These top-line reactions will provide an overview of our process for developing and implementing a plan once we have studied the report and have a better understanding of what it means and how we can implement findings to strengthen Penn State's role as a leading academic institution and ensure that what occurred will never be allowed to happen again." 

Gov. Tom Corbett, a member of the Penn State Board of Trustees, is still in Harrisburg today and there has not been any indication whether he will address the Freeh report's findings today. 

Earlier at 6 a.m.

DUNMORE, Pa. – As the release of the Freeh report looms Thursday morning, the Penn State Board of Trustees is preparing for its regularly scheduled meetings today and Friday, this one being held at the university's Worthington Scranton campus.

Former FBI director Louis Freeh, hired by the board in November to investigate Penn State's response to the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal, is releasing his eight-month investigative report at 9 a.m. and will hold a press conference an hour later at the Westin Hotel in Philadelphia.

The Freeh report will be posted online and will be available to the public and trustees at the same time.

The three newly elected Board of Trustees’ members – Adam Taliaferro, Anthony Lubrano and Ryan McCombie – started their three-year terms July 1 and will be attending their first board meetings.

Taliaferro, a former Penn State football player who made a miraculous recovery from a spinal cord injury suffered while playing for the Nittany Lions, has spoken publicly about his close relationship with former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno.

Taliaferro tweeted Wednesday he won't be offering any opinion on the Freeh report until the actual facts are revealed.

"I am eager 2 review the Freeh report but I have yet to see/read/review it so for me 2 comment on it at this time would be pure speculation," he wrote.

Typically, the July meeting is centered on setting tuition for the next academic year. Penn State president Rodney Erickson is expected to propose one of the lowest tuition increases in decades, only 2.9 percent, after Gov. Tom Corbett signed the $27.7 billion state budget on July 1.

The board's select agenda is available on the trustees' website and the full agenda will be published Friday.

Friday's open meeting will be streamed live via wpsu.org/live from 1:30-4:30 p.m.



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