WSW: Hoadley Says MSU Scandal "Wasn't Just One Terrible Man"

Feb 1, 2018

Dr. Larry Nassar is escorted into court during the seventh day of his sentencing hearing Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018.
Credit Carlos Osorio / The Associated Press

State Representative Jon Hoadley says survivors should be at center of the investigations of Michigan State University. The Kalamazoo Democrat says the goal should be to figure out the systemic failure that led to sexual abuse. 

Hoadley is the ranking Democrat on the House Appropriations subcommittee on higher education It’s one of two house committees which have requested documents from MSU. Hoadley says that should be used to prevent these types of tragedies from happening again at Michigan State and at other universities in Michigan.

The House investigations are part of multiple ongoing inquiries. Hoadley says the Legislature’s job is to hold institutions accountable. He says Attorney General Bill Schuette’s investigation may focus more on possible criminal activity. 

"Our trustees that were elected failed us."

Schuette has called for changing the way trustees are selected to the board at Michigan State. He says those trustees should be appointed by the governor, rather than elected. Hoadley says Schuette, who is also running for governor, is advocating taking choice away from voters. The Kalamazoo representative says every voter should be looking at trustees.

“Our trustees that were elected failed us.”

Two trustees up for election this year have said they won’t seek re-election. Hoadley says he hopes other members of the MSU board will resign. Hoadley says the scandal at Michigan State should result in more people getting involved in the process to increasing accountability.

Michigan State’s faculty is considering holding a vote of no confidence and a resolution that would call for the entire board of trustees to resign. Hoadley says all options should be on the table including impeachment of trustees. But says it’s important for the investigation to proceed.

Hoadley has also introduced legislation to expand Michigan’s bottle deposit law. He says the law approved by voters in the 1970’s helped eliminate pollution. Hoadley’s bill would add water bottles to those that require a deposit which would be refunded when the container is returned. It would include all non-carbonated beverages in a container of a gallon or less, but would not include milk. Hoadley says he hopes the change would increase recycling rates. Governor Snyder has made increasing recycling a priority for his final year in office.