DOCUMENTS RELATED TO FRIENDS of the BARNES FOUNDATION’ S 2011 PETITION
Friends’Petition filed by Samuel C. Stretton, Esquire, dated February 17, 2011
Rule to Show Cause issued by Judge Stanley Ott, dated February 22, 2011
Preliminary Objections of Pennsylvania Attorney General, dated March 24, 2011
Preliminary Objections of the Barnes Foundation , dated March 25, 2011
Philadelphia Inquirer articles by Patricia Horn and Don Steinberg in the Barnes Foundation’s Preliminary Objections:
“Barnes, Lincoln reach an agreement” Sept. 13, 2003
Briefing Schedule issued by Judge Ott, dated March 29, 2011
Brief filed on behalf of the Barnes Foundation dated April 27, 2011
Friends’ Brief in support of petition to reopen dated May 18, 2011
Documents related to Oral Arguments held on August 1, 2011:
Janes-Marcus Sustainability Analysis of the Barnes Foundation 1998-2004
Judge Ott’s Opinion and Order dated October 6, 2011 (not final – includes Sanctions against Friends of the Barnes Foundation)
Sam Stretton, Esq.’s filing: Objection to Sanctions, Request for Hearing, dated November 9, 2011
Judge Ott’s Order Assessing Sanctions against the Friends et al. dated March 7, 2012
NEW: Samuel C. Stretton, Esquire and Barnes Watch Docketing Statement asking four questions about previous ruling, dated April 24, 2012:
PA Attorney General’s Docketing Statement asking whether the Commonwealth is entitled to legal fees and costs, dated April 24, 2012.
Judge Ott’s Memorandum Opinion Sur Order Assessing Counsel Fees, saying that the Attorney General’s Appeal for fees should be dismissed, dated May 11, 2012.
Sam Stretton, Esq.’s Petition to Remand Based on New Evidence, dated June 28, 2012
Response of the Barnes Foundation to the Petition to Remand, dated July 6, 2012
Legal Matters, Public Officials, and the Barnes
Within a few months of the sudden death of Albert Barnes in 1951, the late Walter Annenberg began what would be a lifelong pursuit: to use the legal system to unravel the Indenture of Trust of Albert Barnes and unlock the treasured art collection of the Barnes Foundation.
Today the quest continues, with Annenberg’s heirs -- doing business as the Annenberg Foundation -- joined by the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Lenfest Foundation, pressing on through the court for the treasured contents of the Barnes Foundation. Those efforts have been supported by many public officials, including numerous Attorneys General and Pennsylvania’s current governor, Edward. G. Rendell.
The maneuverings reached a new level with the petitioning of Montgomery County Orphans’ Court by the Barnes Board to expand its number from 5 to 15 members and the request to move the art collection of the Barnes Foundation from Merion to Philadelphia. The stated reason for this decision was that the Barnes Foundation was so financially frail that its very existence was in jeopardy. The alliance of foundations – Annenberg, Pew, Lenfest – offered what was construed as the only solution -- financial “salvation” that containing a condition that spelled destruction of the Barnes Foundation: the galleries in Merion would be emptied and the contents shipped to Philadelphia.
In December 2004, Judge Stanley Ott issued an opinion that grants permission for -- but does not mandate --the Barnes Board of Trustees to move Barnes’ art collection from Merion to a yet to be designed or built facility five miles away in Philadelphia. The decision was supported by Pennsylvania’s Attorney General, who abdicated his role as parens patriae for the beleaguered Barnes Foundation. The Office of the Attorney General continues to support the evisceration plan for the Barnes, despite evidence of changed circumstances for the Barnes Foundation presented by Friends of the Barnes Foundation in a detailed Memorandum.
Public officials in Lower Merion Township have passed a Resolution calling for the plans to move the Barnes Foundation from Merion to be “forever abandoned.” Members of the Board of Commissioners of Montgomery County have also passed a Resolution embracing the Barnes Foundation in Merion, followed by a Request for Proposals to determine legal options available to oppose the planned move.
In addition to the stated support of public officials, Resolutions passed by all local civic associations are unanimous against the move and in support of the value of the Barnes Foundation in Merion as the embodiment of a valued cultural heritage.
Friends of the Barnes Foundation has developed specific alternatives to the destructive plan to move the art collection; alternatives that foster and protect the Barnes as an intact cultural treasure that is indivisible, unique, and irreplaceable. It is a Sensible Plan. The organization continues to work toward the goal of preservation of the Barnes Foundation in Merion.
It is hoped that the materials presented here will help the reader understand the role of public officials in this developing story.
Of Special Note to Pennsylvanians:
All Pennsylvania taxpayers are unwittingly partners in the planned destruction of the Barnes Foundation in Merion. How did this happen? Learn more…
1) Governor Rendell pledged $25 million dollars as a contribution to the funds being pledged for the move of the Barnes art collection from Merion to Philadelphia. Research by FBF member, Gary Adler, revealed the source of that money: An appropriation in Pennsylvania Senate bill 1213 passed in 2002 granted $100 million toward “construction of a building for the Barnes museum in Philadelphia.” This bill was passed two years before the court ruling granting permission for the Barnes Board to move the collection to Philadelphia. Amazingly, none of the major parties in the court proceedings acknowledge having known of the appropriation, including the judge who eventually gave permission for the Board of Trustees to move the art collection.
2) According to an article in the Philadelphia Inquirer, “The Deal of the Art,” by Patricia Horn (May 22, 2005), $80 million in taxpayer money was pledged to Lincoln University, stewards of the Barnes Foundation, to motivate their Board of Trustees’ cooperation with the plan to move the Barnes from Merion to Philadelphia.
Public Officials and the Barnes Foundation
Governor Rendell’s Office
• Governor Rendell pledged $25 million dollars as a contribution toward the move of the Barnes art collection from Merion to Philadelphia. Research by FBF member, Gary Adler, revealed the source of that money: An appropriation in Pennsylvania Senate bill 1213 passed in 2002 granted $100 million toward “construction of a building for the Barnes museum in Philadelphia.” This bill, proposed by Senators Fumo, Thompson, Jubilierer, and Mellow, was passed two years before the court ruling granting permission for the Barnes Board to move the collection to Philadelphia. Amazingly, none of the major parties in the court proceedings acknowledge having known of the appropriation.
• Other interesting background information:: According to an article in the Philadelphia Inquirer, “The Deal of the Art,” by Patricia Horn (May 22, 2005), $80 million in taxpayer money was pledged to Lincoln University, stewards of the Barnes Foundation, to motivate their Board of Trustees’ cooperation with the plan to move the Barnes from Merion to Philadelphia.
• The region’s major newspaper, The Philadelphia Inquirer, specifically chose not to publish the information about the appropriation, saying, “There is no story.” Stories did appear in The Evening Bulletin in “Was Barnes Foundation Crying Poor With $100 Million On The Way?” by: Jim McCaffrey and The Los Angeles Times in art critic Christopher Knight’s column, “What the Court Didn’t Know.”
DOCUMENTS RELATED TO PROCEEDINGS IN MONTOMGERY COUNTY ORPHANS’ COURT 2003-2004:
• The 2nd amended petition of the Barnes Foundation:
See pp. 9 –10 of the Barnes’ 2nd amended petition for request that Pew Charitable Trusts and the Lenfest Foundation get to approve seven new Barnes Trustees “so that they can help ensure the success of their charitable investment.” (paragraph 32.)
Audited Financial Statements:
For the Year ended December 31, 2001
For the Year ended December 31, 2002
Report by Deloitte & Touche:
Overview of the Financial Position of the Barnes Foundation, September 2002
Library of Documents:
• Closing argument by the amici (“friends of the court” -- Barnes students opposing the move)
• Just What the Doctor Ordered? The Doctrine of Deviation, the Case of Dr. Barnes’s Trust, and the Future Location of the Barnes Foundation by Jonathan Scott Goldman, Esquire
ORPHANS’ COURT TESTIMONY:
From December 2003 Hearings: The Testimony of Rebecca Rimel, CEO of Pew Charitable Trusts See also: Excerpt of testimony in which Rebecca Rimel states that she is “not familiar” with the Barnes Foundation Indenture of Trust.
From September 2004 Hearings: List of Witnesses
Documents from Proceedings in Montgomery County Orphan’s Court Fall 2007 – Spring 2008
Other Related Documents:
Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett’s Office
• Memorandum to Attorney General Corbett’s Office from Friends of the Barnes Foundation regarding substantive changed circumstances of the Barnes Foundation, October 2006
• Essay by Aram K. Jerrehian, Attorney General: Missing in Action
Montgomery County Board of Commissioners
• On January 18, 2007, the Montgomery County Commissioners approved a resolution that plans to move the Barnes Foundation from Merion should be abandoned and that the Barnes Foundation Board of Trustees should explore avenues to integrate visitation into the Philadelphia tourist experience without relocating the Barnes.
• On March 1, 2007, the Montgomery County Commissioners voted to “seek proposals from law firms to evaluate the legal options to retain the Barnes Foundation in Lower Merion Township, Montgomery County”
Lower Merion Township Board of Commissioners
• In August of 2006 the Lower Merion Board of Commissioners unanimously approved a resolution stating that the plan to move the Barnes Foundation should be “forever abandoned”.
Congressional Representative Jim Gerlach
Representative Gerlach has proposed a legislative initiative that imposes severe penalties on charitable organizations that work against donor intent.
• Phila. Inquirer Op-Ed piece by Jim Gerlach “Invest in the Barnes Where it is”
Local Civic Organizations
• The Merion Civic Association and the Federation of Civic Organizations have passed resolutions in favor of the Barnes Foundation remaining in Merion.
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