PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Could the scandal at Penn State bring even more change there, and at other universities?
During a taping of the KD-PG Sunday Edition, Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner said he’ll push for reforms.
Wagner says he wants action in light of the Penn State sex abuse scandal.
“We knew there were serious integrity issues – failures of integrity within Penn State – but we also knew that there were structural deficiencies that permitted this to go on for literally decades,” said Wagner.
Wagner says something has to be done to make sure that an institution like Penn State is responsible when it comes to the $300 to $400 million it gets from the state each year.
“There is an accountability related to how those public dollars are utilized,” he said. “That’s what we’re looking at.”
Wagner wants state lawmakers to change things, such as allowing Penn State’s president to be on its Board of Trustees.
“Penn State University is very unusual in that the president of the university is not only the president but the CEO – the chief executive officer, is the secretary of the board, is on the executive committee of the board, is on every single committee of the board, sets the agenda for the board meetings; is, I would say, the most powerful person on a board that he or she is supposed to report to and be held accountable to. In fact, it’s the opposite at Penn State and that’s what must change.”
Wagner says he also has a problem with the governor’s role.
“The governor should not be a voting member of the board – should still be a member of the board – but not cast a vote for a number of different reasons,” said Wagner. “There is potential and perceived conflicts of interest.”
Wagner also says all state-related schools need more transparency. He says he’ll propose specifics to Harrisburg in 60 days.