Following the NCAA’s sanctions against Penn State University, which includes a hefty fine, state Sen. Mike Stack today called for more openness and transparency at colleges and universities that received state support.
“As Penn State continues to feel the fallout from the sex abuse scandal, it is crucial that the state legislature takes the steps needed to ensure that state-allocated funds are only used toward academic advancement, rather than paying fines and civil lawsuit settlements,” said Stack (D-Phila).
Stack said Pennsylvania’s four state-related universities should be subject to the state’s open records law. In addition, the state should require institutions to show transparency on how they spend their state allocations.
Stack has offered budget appropriation proposals that would offer more transparency, accountability and openness by requiring state-related universities — Penn State, Pitt, Temple and Lincoln — to clearly define where their state allocation goes. The money would be kept in a separate account from other university funds and would only be used for student aid, professor or employee salaries, capital projects, technology, equipment, and research-related projects.
“The only way to truly ensure that Penn State does not use taxpayer dollars to pay the $60 million in fines that the NCAA has sanctioned is to require the school to create a separate bank account for taxpayer money and limit how the university can spend the state appropriation,” Stack said. “My measures accomplish this goal. It’s a simple, common-sense way for state-related universities to spend tax dollars with openness and transparency.”