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Senate Backs University Foundation Disclosure Rules

Posted on Friday, June 3, 2011 6:44am

A bill that would require the fundraising arms of U-C and C-S-U campuses to comply with California’s public records act has passed the State Senate. The measure applies to foundations and other state university “auxiliaries.”

Last year, Sarah Palin spoke at a fundraising gala for California State University Stanislaus. Her critics wanted to know how much she was getting paid, so they filed a public records request. But the campus wouldn’t comply. It said Palin’s contract was with the university’s foundation – not the university itself – and therefore, nobody’s business.

Democratic Senator Leland Yee’s bill would change that. Former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed the measure last year after heavy lobbying from the universities. But Yee says he’s reached a compromise that keeps most donors’ information private – except the biggest ones or those with conflicts of interest.

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