Adelphi, Md. (Dec. 7, 2012) -- As has been reported, the University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents met on November 18, 2012, and November 19, 2012, in hastily convened closed sessions to consider confidential information about the University of Maryland, College Park's (UMCP's) application to move to the Big Ten. The representative of the Office of the Maryland Attorney General who serves as the board's general counsel was present at each meeting.
The board and USM officials acknowledge and sincerely regret that the public notice and closing procedures required by the Maryland Open Meetings Act were not followed with regard to the two sessions. However, the matters discussed at each meeting were proper subjects for closed-session discussions in accordance with the Open Meetings Act.
As both USM Board Chair James L. Shea and USM Chancellor William E. Kirwan said in an earlier statement, UMCP's move to the Big Ten did not require the board's approval. But it was important to both the university and the system that the board understand and support the implications of such a significant move.
The USM board and officials and the Attorney General's Office are thoroughly reviewing their practices to ensure that the USM vigilantly adheres to all of the Open Meetings Act's procedural as well as substantive requirements.
Recently, USM regents and officials learned that a complaint has been filed against the Board of Regents with the Maryland Open Meetings Compliance Board. The USM board will participate fully in the compliance board's process and looks forward to the compliance board's conclusions and instructions on the practices for meetings that must be held in executive session on short notice.
Contact: Anne Moultrie