Jerry Sandusky scandal costs to Penn State surpass $49 million

mdawson@centredaily.comSeptember 13, 2013 

— The Jerry Sandusky scandal has now cost Penn State more than $49 million for legal and consulting services, the university said Friday.

The latest tally of $49,433,866 represents work by more than three dozen firms that invoiced Penn State between November 2011 and June 30 of this year. When factoring in the dollar value of the total settlement offers with Sandusky claimants and the full NCAA fine, the potential cost skyrockets to more than $157 million.

The university has been providing monthly updates on the costs, and the latest report shows the cost increased almost $1.7 million in June.

The largest chunk of the work in June was billed by the law firms representing former university administrators. Three of the administrators, ex-president Graham Spanier, ex-athletic director Tim Curley and retired vice president Gary Schultz, are awaiting trial on perjury, obstruction of justice and related charges.

The university does not break down the cost by firm, so the only figure available is the total billed under that category of legal services, which was $842,376.

To date, Penn State has been billed more than $6.7 million by the attorneys representing the former employees, who as officers of Penn State were entitled to the university paying their legal bills.

In June, Penn State also was billed $250,132 by former U.S. Sen. George Mitchell, who’s been appointed by the NCAA to monitor its progress in implementing new compliance, ethical, security and governance reforms. To date, the university has paid his firm, DLA Piper, $1.8 million.

At the end of May, Mitchell issued a report praising Penn State. He most recently issued an annual report praising the steps the university has taken to enhance its security, governance, compliance and ethical guidelines.

The latest update also shows Penn State was invoiced $463,069 by the firms handling its own legal defenses, such as Feinberg Rozen, Saul Ewing and Duane Morris.

Penn State was invoiced a small amount, $412, in June from the former FBI director Louis Freeh’s firm. Freeh issued a scathing and controversial report last summer, which the NCAA used to hand down sanctions on Penn State.

Penn State’s next $12 million payment toward the $60 million is due by the end of this year.

The amount paid to the former employees’ lawyers will only increase, too, as the bills don’t reflect work they did this summer for a preliminary hearing in Harrisburg.

Penn State President Rodney Erickson said the university has insurance policies that will cover some of the costs, but others, such as crisis communications, will be paid out of pocket.

Mike Dawson can be reached at 231-4616. Follow him on Twitter @MikeDawsonCDT.

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