University System of Maryland chancellor Brit Kirwan acknowledged Friday that the Board of Regents violated Maryland’s open meetings act by secretly convening to discuss the University of Maryland’s move to the Big Ten, but said the group was merely “confused” and “overlooked” its responsibility to inform the public of its plans.
“We feel quite chastened and regretful for not doing our duty,” he said. “We are determined to do better.”
Advocates for open government have questioned the board’s motives and see this high-profile incident as the impetus to push for more stringent punishment. Under the current law, the board could face a legal suit and ultimately have their actions — they voted to support Maryland’s decision to apply for Big Ten membership — voided.
But Maryland did not need approval from the regents to make the move from the Big Ten and sought it only because of the high-profile nature of the decision.