Critics Question Legality of U. of Maryland’s Big Ten Vote

The University of Maryland’s quick move to join the Big Ten Conference this week has raised questions among legal experts who say university officials and members of the system’s Board of Regents violated the state’s open-meetings law by conducting board sessions about the move out of public view. System officials maintain that the two meetings in question were legal, and a spokesman said the board was “reviewing its policies and procedures to ensure compliance.”

“The law is unmistakable that you can’t just close the meeting because you feel like it,” said Frank D. LoMonte, executive director of the Student Press Law Center in Arlington County. LoMonte added that the vote could be at risk of being voided.

“With the amount of money at stake here, they would be smart to hit the restart button,” LoMonte said. “If I was the ACC and looking to throw a wrench in the plans . . . I would seize upon this.”

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