The Massachusetts Higher Education Commissioner says a funding freeze at Westfield State University should be lifted now that the embattled former president of the school is retired.
High Education Commissioner Richard Freeland is recommending release of $2 million earmarked to build a new science center. Freeland moved last month to freeze certain state funding in the midst of a leadership crisis at the school triggered by investigations into lavish spending by president Evan Dobelle.
A Westfield State spokesperson said releasing the $2 million appropriation is a vote of confidence in the future of the university and its students. Dobelle abruptly retired late last Friday, three weeks after university trustees placed him on paid administrative leave. Dobelle has sued some of the trustees and Commissioner Freeland claiming defamation.