Pages of Palin's CSU Stanislaus contract found in Dumpster, students say

The Sacramento BeeApril 14, 2010 

The controversy surrounding Sarah Palin's upcoming speech at CSU Stanislaus took a bizarre turn Tuesday when two students said they had found part of her confidential contract in a campus Dumpster.

By day's end, Attorney General Jerry Brown had vowed to expand his investigation of the nonprofit foundation that financially supports California State University, Stanislaus, looking into how the documents wound up in a trash container and whether the foundation is properly managing its $20 million in assets.

Palin's contract with the foundation has been the source of intrigue since the announcement late last month that the former Republican vice presidential candidate and Alaska governor is coming to Turlock for a university fundraiser on June 25.

Foundation officials have said the contract with Palin prohibits disclosure of her payment, and Palin critics — including some faculty, students and a San Francisco lawmaker — have been trying to get their hands on the contract through all kinds of official tactics.

Turns out Dumpster diving was more effective than filing a Public Records Act request.

"I mean, who expected to go into a Dumpster and find, intact, the Sarah Palin contract? No one expected that," said Ashli Briggs, a 23-year-old student who presented the document at a Capitol news conference Tuesday.

As of Tuesday evening, officials at the university and its foundation said they hadn't seen the pages in question and hadn't determined if they were legitimate or who might have thrown them away.

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