Last month, a legislative subcommittee in South Carolina voted to close South Carolina State University for two years. While this proposal is now off the table, the fate of the university and its leadership is still up in the air. Here are the latest developments:
A circuit court judge ordered the board of trustees of South Carolina State University not to fire suspended university president Thomas Elzey. The judge noted that the legislature was currently considering firing all of the trustees. So the judge ruled that whoever the legislature designated as the new governing board should decide Dr. Elzey’s fate.
The South Carolina Senate voted 41-1 to replace the board of trustees with a governing body appointed by lawmakers and Governor Nikki Haley. But the South Carolina House wants the authority to be invested in the state’s Budget and Control Board.
In another development, President Elzey filed a lawsuit against the university saying that the board did not honor his four-year contract. He seeks $400,000 that he would be owed if he was able to complete his tenure plus additional money for the humiliation and emotional stress he has endured.
The board of trustees has discussed reaching a financial settlement with Dr. Elzey.
Update: President Elzey was fired on March 16 after a court ruled that the board had the power to do so.