Pertinent Legal Information
Universitywide Policies & Procedures | Contracting and Model Contracts | Freedom of Information Law | Clery Act | Title IX | Peer-To-Peer File Sharing
Counsel’s Office assists System and Campus offices to develop and maintain policy to comply with federal and state law. Click here to visit the Universitywide Policies and Procedures site, where users can search for policies by number or keyword: SUNY Policies & Procedures
Counsel’s Office reviews System and Campus contracts and agreements and negotiates on behalf of SUNY clients for goods and services. Model documents are available here.
Counsel’s Office maintains a FOIL Officers ListServ. Designated Campus FOIL Officers who respond to FOIL requests are eligible for membership.
SUNY Campuses comply with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act and its amendments and regulations. The Federal Handbook for compliance with the Clery Act may be found here.
Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits sex discrimination in any education program or activity that receives federal financial assistance. SUNY campuses comply with regulations and guidance issued by the Office for Civil Rights, which enforces Title IX.
Each campus has a Title IX coordinator. Campus employees with Title IX compliance responsibilities may join the Title IX ListServ operated out of the Office of General Counsel. Please e-mail Associate Counsel Andrea Stagg if you would like to be added to the Title IX ListServ.SUNY institutions comply with copyright law and with the Higher Education Act. Parts of those laws govern SUNY’s responsibilities in responding to violations of copyright law on our campuses. SUNY and its campuses have been attuned to this issue for many years, and SUNY's Chancellor issued a Memo to Presidents on the matter in 2007. SUNY issued additional guidance on this issue in 2008 and issues guidance on changes.
Every institution that serves as an Internet Service Provider (ISP), including SUNY campuses, must register a designated Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) Agent, and must respond to valid DMCA notices. An FAQ prepared by EDUCAUSE that addresses the DMCA requirements and the responsibilities of designated DMCA Agents can be found here: http://www.educause.edu/policy/campus/dmcafaq. Provided that a campus has a program and practice of responding to valid DMCA notices, it will maintain a “safe harbor” from actions against the campus for violations of the copyright law.
The Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA), the 2008 amendment to the Higher Education Act requires that SUNY colleges provide notice regarding illegal file sharing and adopt a written plan to address file sharing at the college. Both the notice and written plan requirements are summarized in a NACUA Note (which should be sufficient for most individuals tasked with compliance), and (for those requiring more information) are treated in more depth in an article in the Albany Law Review.
Campuses must comply with these (and other HEOA) requirements to ensure eligibility for Title IV funding from the Federal government. The Department of Education has the power to conduct a program review and issue fines (or in very extreme cases, remove eligibility for Federal funding).
EDUCAUSE maintains a resource page on this issue which includes links to policies adopted by role model campuses. EDUCAUSE also maintains a page listing legal sources of online content. A campus would be compliant with the list of legal alternatives requirement of the HEOA by linking to the EDUCAUSE list (which is updated periodically).