Skip to comments.Penn State May Seek (sovereign) Immunity After Skirting Public Laws
Posted on 11/16/2011 6:36:52 PM PST by Libloather
Link only - Penn State May Seek Immunity After Skirting Public Laws
Well isn’t that special. I guess it really is good to be king. Laws are for little people.
Sponsoring FReepers are contributing
$10 Each time a New Monthly Donor signs up!
Get more bang for your FR buck!
Click Here To Sign Up Now!
This will be very interesting, because the Pennsylvania State University (and other PA universities) are not state schools, but “state supported” schools, which if I understand it correctly receive partial funding from the state.
It has been convenient for them to avoid scrutiny normally associated with government institutions, but now they want to claim that.
Some public universities are (state) constitutionally their own entity with their own popos. The U prez is (a) god.
If PENN STATE was changed to a State University then maybe the in state tuition would be more reasonable.
“In 1863 the Agricultural College of Pennsylvania became the Commonwealth’s sole land-grant institution.”
Only 10 percent of it's funding comes from the state.
Must have been consulting with Al Whore about using his, “No controlling legal authority” get out of jail free card.
It’s going to take another conspiracy to cover up the first conspiracy and they are coming out of the woodwork to rally around a criminal enterprise that includes football money. Moody’s doing their impression of a think-tank.
Should have nuked the place when the Grand Jury report first made the news.
The state should say they want their land back.
Not gonna be good.
They would have a chance if they would come out strong next week with clear guidelines, values, ethics, and moral standing for the future combined with a very strong, empathic statement of support for the victims.
They need a strong healer/doer like Bush was right after 9/11.
That in my opinion is the only chance they have to have a reasonable and eventually respectable institution. They need to make an bridge with out of cherry pits. Otherwise it is gonna be as you say . . . Pitchforks anyone?!
Meant to say: They need to build a bridge out of the cherry pits.
PS sees the handwriting on the wall---they know they have dug themselves into a huge hole---and that they can only recover by paying a horrendous cost----to their finances and to their football program.
The law suits will commece on several levels----each victim has many options:
failure to report crimes against children;
failure to protect children;
using PS facilities to commit crimes;
using non-profit funds to commit crimes against children.
etc,etc, etc, ad infinitum, ad nauseaum.
Others disagree. I have previously researched PA’s Sovereign Immunity Act on a state contract liability issue and our determinations were that the state statues would apply based on the PA AG past opinions.
The Pennsylvania State University, commonly referred to as Penn State or PSU, is a public research university with campuses and facilities throughout the state of Pennsylvania, United States. Founded in 1855, the university has a threefold mission of teaching, research, and public service...
In the 1970s, university became a state-related institution. As such, it now belongs to the Commonwealth System of Higher Education, and is not part of the fully public Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education.
The Commonwealth System of Higher Education is the organizing body of Pennsylvania’s “state-related” schools, which allows the independent control of the universities while supplying them with the public funds needed for operations at each institution. Universities in the System are considered public universities, but are under independent control rather than that of the state. Because of their independent status, universities in the Commonwealth System tend to have higher tuition costs compared to the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. They are exempt from Pennsylvania’s Open Records law except for a few minor provisions. Before the creation of the “state-related” legal status in the early 1970s, Lincoln University, Temple University and University of Pittsburgh were private. Previously, the Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) was repeatedly defined as a “state-owned university” in numerous official acts and Pennsylvania Attorney General opinions from its resurrection as a “land grant” institution, the Pennsylvania State College in 1855, as applicable to having its road system and buildings on state campuses constructed using state funding, paying its employees through state-issued checks and having them eligible to collect state employee retirement system benefits. In 1989, Penn State asserted a public status in court for the purpose of not having a private bank branch’s operations on its University Park campus subject to local county taxes, while simultaneously asserting private status for the purpose of not having to reveal the salaries of its top administrative employees. With the enabling legislation changing the failing Williamsport (PA) Area Community College to the affiliated “Pennsylvania College of Technology” in 1989, Penn State was again designated as a “state-related” institution.
§ 8522. Exceptions to sovereign immunity.
(a) Liability imposed.—The General Assembly, pursuant to
section 11 of Article I of the Constitution of Pennsylvania,
does hereby waive, in the instances set forth in subsection (b)only and only to the extent set forth in this subchapter and within the limits set forth in section 8528 (relating to
limitations on damages), sovereign immunity as a bar to an
action against Commonwealth parties, for damages arising out of a negligent act where the damages would be recoverable under the common law or a statute creating a cause of action if the injury were caused by a person not having available the defense of sovereign immunity.
Sovereign immunity generally - 42 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 8521
The consensus among attorneys who have worked similar cases involving sexual abuse of minors seems to be that the university is not shielded from lawsuits under the state’s Sovereign Immunity Act, which essentially says the commonwealth cannot be sued.
Thomas Sheridan, a prominent Philadelphia lawyer who has handled child sex abuse cases in the past, told CNN News in a Nov. 13 report that the university appears to fall into one of nine exceptions laid out in Pennsylvania law that would pave the way for civil litigation.
“PSU has liability exposure to the sexual assault victims under the real estate exception to sovereign immunity,” Sheridan told CNN. “The Restatement Second of Torts section 344 has been explicitly extended to universities which do business with the public.”