Ohio bill would give private universities protection

Private universities are pushing for protections from lawsuits stemming from a requirement that they now make records from their police forces available to the public.

State Rep. Kirk Schuring, R-Canton, has submitted a bill that would give private institutions such as the University of Dayton and Wittenberg University the same legal protections afforded to public colleges and universities.

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Indiana governor concerned about Notre Dame police bill

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence said Monday that his "strong bias for the public's right to know" will weigh heavily as he decides whether to veto a measure that would shelter police departments at Notre Dame and 10 other Indiana private colleges from following the same crime reporting requirements as all other law enforcement agencies.

The bill by Democratic Rep. Pat Bauer, whose district includes Notre Dame, was approved recently by the Legislature amid a high-profile court fight between the Catholic university and ESPN over police records.

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A handcuffed bill on college police records in Indiana

The sponsors of House Bill 1022 insist they want private universities in Indiana to be more open with police records. The bill, they say, will create a new and stronger level of transparency. And the universities themselves, who helped craft the bill, have said they want to be more open when it comes to public safety.

The bill comes in the wake of controversies about sexual assault investigations on university campuses, as well as a lawsuit by media giant ESPN on whether police records by the University of Notre Dame should be public.

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