Sandusky scandal aftermath

Penn State trustees plan special meeting to discuss approving settlements with Jerry Sandusky victims

Board plans special meeting to appoint subcommittee to handle settlements

adanahy@centredaily.comOctober 15, 2012 

Penn State trustees will hold a special meeting Oct. 26 to consider giving one of the board’s subcommittees the power to approve settlements reached with Jerry Sandusky victims.

University leaders have said they want to reach out of court settlements with victims of the former Penn State football coach, who was convicted and sentenced to 30 to 60 years for sexually molesting boys. Penn State hired the law firm of Ken Feinberg, who handled the Sept. 11 victims’ fund, to help settle victims’ suits this year.

According to information obtained by the Centre Daily Times, the special board meeting will take place at 5 p.m. Oct. 26, after an executive session at 4 p.m. at The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel. Trustees can participate by phone or in person.

Trustees will consider giving a subcommittee of the legal and compliance committee the authority to approve any settlements reached with Sandusky victims.

The board’s next regularly scheduled meeting will take place Nov. 16. Penn State spokesman David La Torre said the board is not waiting for that November meeting to take the action because “it’s important to be prepared in the event that settlements are reached prior to the November meeting.”

“The legal subcommittee was formed to oversee legal matters such as this. If approved by the board, the legal subcommittee would be able to provide this important oversight in an efficient and effective manner,” La Torre said.

Former FBI Director Louis Freeh, hired by Penn State to conduct an independent investigation into the scandal, came to the conclusion that Joe Paterno and three university administrators actively tried to conceal abuse by Sandusky. Those former administrators — Graham Spanier, Tim Curley and Gary Schultz — along with Paterno’s family have vehemently disputed Freeh’s findings. Curley and Schultz are facing perjury charges for testimony they gave to the grand jury investigating the case.

The university has two insurance policies it expects to cover its legal costs. However, one of those firms has taken legal action to get out of paying those bills.

Anne Danahy can be reached at 231-4648. Follow her on Twitter @AnneDanahy.

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