Judge Anne Covey is set on a January trial in the lawsuit brought by state Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman, R-Benner Township, and Treasurer Rob McCord against the NCAA and Penn State.
Corman and McCord seek to enforce the Endowment Act, the state legislation that would keep within the state the $60 million fine imposed by the college sports organization upon the university after the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.
On Nov. 25, the two state officials asked Covey to direct the case to the Commonwealth Court’s mediation program. Prior mediation attempts with Covey failed “to reach an accord,” according to that request.
On Nov. 26, Penn State joined the plaintiffs in asking for the more informal process.
“(Penn State) agrees a further mediation at this juncture would be appropriate and in the interest of the parties and the public,” the university’s counsel wrote.
The NCAA filed no documents.
Covey did not see a reason to grant the request.
“Plaintiffs and PSU have presented no new information demonstrating that the parties are closer to reaching an agreement nor has the NCAA joined in this mediation request,” she wrote.
She did not deny the ability of the two sides to come together to reach a settlement, but said that could be done with private mediation, via amicable resolution, or through request for a settlement conference with the court, but all of those are approaching a deadline of Jan. 6.
“The trial date serves as the demarcation in time before which the parties have to settle their differences; thereafter, the court decides the parties’ dispute,” Covey wrote.