University's fundraising arm bears brunt of costs

Updated: June 22, 2004, 12:43 PM ET
Associated Press

LITTLE ROCK -- Nolan Richardson's discrimination lawsuit against the University of Arkansas and its fund-raising arm has cost $429,651 so far to defend and that figure could rise, officials said.

The current figure includes expenses such as the work of inhouse, salaried legal counsel and travel costs for Fayetteville campus defendants. The trial was held in Little Rock.

The University of Arkansas Foundation Inc. is bearing the majority of the burden. Since March 2002, the foundation has paid $371,821 to the Little Rock law firm of Kaplan, Brewer, Maxey and Haralson.

Richardson, the former Arkansas head basketball coach, filed a racial discrimination lawsuit Dec. 19, 2002, after Arkansas administrators fired him in March 2002. U.S. District Judge Bill Wilson said last week that he will issue a written verdict in the case.

The Fayetteville campus thus far has received and paid $57,830 for the litigation, including $33,643 to Sarah James, a former associate general counsel who was employed on an hourly basis.

The rest of the university's bills included travel, lodging, meals, witness fees, depositions, copying and miscellaneous costs.

UA System general counsel Fred Harrison didn't attempt to account for the work of four full-time salaried university attorneys, including himself.

The cost figures also exclude travel costs for UA Chancellor John A. White and athletic director Frank Broyles. Rogers said total costs for travel haven't been compiled.

Broyles said his department would sort out the costs sometime after June 30, the end of the fiscal year.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press