A settlement has been reached between WFPL’s Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting and the University of Louisville Foundation in a suit filed by the center over the release of financial and other documents.
Under the agreement, reached Wednesday, the Foundation, which oversees the university’s endowment, has agreed to hand over the requested documents and pay $15,000 in legal fees.
The center filed suit in September, sought access to ethics and disclosure forms, along with payroll and financial documents. Throughout this long process, the Foundation resisted or ignored records requests, delayed and fought to block access to these public records.
The state attorney general’s office has ruled more than four times since August that the University of Louisville Foundation violated Kentucky’s Open Records Act by refusing to release documents requested by KyCIR.
KyCIR previously sued the university. In May 2015, the newsroom won a settlement and made public a critical financial auditor’s report that the school tried to keep hidden. That financial review, prompted by a series of high-profile thefts and embezzlement, found a university system that had been susceptible to fraud and inappropriate disbursements, among other shortcomings.
The 2014 review, prompted by a series of thefts and embezzlement, found the school’s financial controls lacking, susceptible to fraud and inappropriate disbursements.
These latest documents will be the backbone of upcoming investigative reports. Read the settlement here.
Disclosures: The University of Louisville is a longtime donor to Louisville Public Media, which includes the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting.