The Advance-Titan

Wells receives extension to respond to UW lawsuit

Alex Nemec

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With the UW System’s recent response to Thomas Sonnleitner’s countersuit, former Chancellor Richard Wells’ lawyer, Raymond Dall’Osto, said Tuesday he will be filing Wells’ response around the end of March.

Dall’Osto said Wells received an extension to file due to travel.

The UW System’s response, filed Friday, stated former Chancellor Wells and former Vice Chancellor Thomas Sonnleitner never formally met with the full UW System Board of Regents.

“[The UW System denies] that Chancellor Wells and Mr. Sonnleitner made a presentation to the Board of Regents on or about October 8, 2010,” the response stated. “[The UW System admits] that nine members of the Board attended a joint meeting of the Business and Finance Committee and the Capital Planning and Budget Committee.”

The response said four parties agreed to enter a $3.8 million agreement to help fund the anaerobic biodigester on Witzel Avenue, but that the University and the UW System were not included in those parties.

The UW system denied that Wells or Sonnleitner disclosed any University funds besides the $1.2 million in student fees which were being used to pay for the Oshkosh Sports Complex, according to the response.

According to the response, Wells and Sonnleitner told the UW System Board of Regents group that the $1.2 million was included in a $10 million total, and instead added it to the total $11.2 million they did to pay for the Oshkosh Sports Complex.

“[The UW System denies] that the projects included any commitment by the University to pay or guarantee payment of any project costs beyond the stated commitment of student fees,” the response stated.

The response stated the UW System denied Sonnleitner’s actions which were within the scope of his employment and that he signed letters in good faith.

In Sonnleitner’s response, he claimed he was entitled to indemnification, which means he wouldn’t be liable for any losses the University would suffer because he was doing his job. The UW System’s response denied this.

According to court documents, the University Foundation has acknowledged that Sonnleitner has named it as a third-party defendant, but has not filed any statements regarding the suit.

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Independent Student Newspaper of the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Wells receives extension to respond to UW lawsuit