Over $80,000 of the short-lived “Monument Trust” will be paid to non-UNC attorneys who played a role in the creation of a lawsuit settlement that temporarily gave Silent Sam to the North Carolina Division Sons of Confederate Veterans Inc. on Nov. 27.
The UNC System's now-infamous settlement with the North Carolina Division Sons of Confederate Veterans Inc. was struck down last month after a swarm of public scrutiny and legal challenges. The reversal by Orange County Superior Court Judge Allen Baddour returned possession of Silent Sam to the state's higher-education authority, but a $2.5 million trust of UNC's money that the System forfeited in that deal may not be coming back in full. More than $80,000 of those funds in total are set to pay the Confederate group's lawyer and the attorneys involved in operating the trust after its creation. However, a new legal challenge by UNC students and faculty seeks to change that.
A secretive $74,999 payment has remained a standout question in a pair of backdoor deals between the UNC System and the North Carolina Division Sons of Confederate Veterans Inc. two months ago. The settlement agreement was announced nearly a month after its Nov. 21 signing as a commitment by the SCV to limit its practices and displays on UNC System property. The Daily Tar Heel has obtained new details from sources with first-hand knowledge of the deal, revealing that the $74,999 served as a crucial payoff in a larger courtroom collusion effort between the state’s higher-education authority and a politically-active, pro-Confederate group.
A decorated government watchdog is attributing years of illegal political activity to the North Carolina Division Sons of Confederate Veterans Inc. in a new complaint to the State Board of Elections. Citing The Daily Tar Heel's exclusive reporting and its own follow-up research, the complaint recommends major penalties against the pro-Confederate nonprofit, which received $2.6 million through backdoor dealings with the UNC System last November.
The North Carolina Division Sons of Confederate Veterans Inc. has for years been violating federal tax laws, operating a political action committee in violation of its tax-exempt status and facilitating political donations through illegal means, according to numerous individual first-hand accounts, a slew of internal communications provided to The Daily Tar Heel and multiple expert legal opinions. The Confederate group, classified as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit in North Carolina, brought in $2.6 million of UNC System money last November through controversial dealings with Board of Governors members.
Multiple current member of the North Carolina Division Sons of Confederate Veterans Inc. spoke to The Daily Tar Heel in the aftermath of the Confederate group's secretive settlement with the UNC System, which accrued it ownership of Silent Sam and $2.5 million in UNC System money. The members expressed desires to squash the deal and give the money back. They alleged financial impropriety and extortion among SCV leadership, referenced intermingling with gangs and hate groups, and described threats and slurs that have been issued toward members who raise questions.
In an email recently leaked by one of its recipients, Kevin Stone, leader of the N.C. Division Sons of Confederate Veterans Inc., detailed secret negotiations with UNC Board of Governors members that led to a "major strategic victory" for the pro-Confederate movement. Stone sent the email on the same day that the group filed and immediately settled a lawsuit against the UNC system and the board. That settlement won the Confederate group legal ownership of Silent Sam and $2.5 million in UNC system money, some of which may go towards a new headquarters for the group.
Nearly seven years after its investigation began, the U.S. Department of Education stated in a final program review report that UNC acted in violation of federal laws on campus safety and crime information throughout the department's review period while demonstrating a lack of administrative capability that “remains a matter of serious concern for the department.” Clery Act expert S. Daniel Carter told The Daily Tar Heel that the University is "certainly looking at six figures" in federal fines, and he called the department's description of UNC's administrative issues “one of the most blistering I’ve read in many years."
The investigation began in 2013, stemming from a federal complaint filed by four UNC students and a former administrator.
A journalist's take on music with an emphasis on the hard-core, rebellious band, Rage Against the Machine. This music incites passion, which journalists need in their fight for the truth.
Two activists with Hillsborough Progressives Taking Action, including UNC professor Altha Cravey, protest a United Daughters of the Confederacy meeting.
A sign made by a Hillsborough Progressives Taking Action activist in protest of the United Daughters of the Confederacy.