PSU to hire additional attorney

The Oregon University System (OUS) and the Oregon Department of Justice reached an agreement early this month that will allow Portland State to have two State Assistant Attorneys General.

Previously, PSU had one part time assistant attorney general, while Oregon State University and the University of Oregon had full time legal council.

The agreement will provide more equality among the three largest universities in Oregon, said Lisa Zavala of the Oregon University System government relations office. Because PSU is such a large university, having full time legal council available is necessary, she said.

Senate Bill 220 served as the launching pad for this agreement. The bill was introduced by OUS because no in-house assistance existed for the legal questions that often arise in the complex university community at PSU and because the legal assistance that was available was too costly and consistently exceeded the OUS budget.

However, because of the negotiations between OUS and the state Department of Justice, the legislation no longer needs to be passed. Portland State President Daniel Bernstine is currently working on a plan to hire the new assistant attorneys general.

Oregon State University and the University of Oregon can also now have one additional attorney each.