published Tuesday, May 14th, 2013

Berry College in Georgia sues Tennessee agency over billboard

ATLANTA — A private college in northwest Georgia is suing Tennessee’s higher education commission in a dispute over billboard advertising.

Berry College says in the federal lawsuit that the Tennessee agency has demanded large fees and threatened to sue the school if it continues to advertise in that state without registering and paying fees of more than $20,000 a year.

The Rome, Ga.-based school says it competes with Tennessee colleges and has advertised on a billboard in Nashville.

Berry says in the lawsuit that the Tennessee Higher Education Commission has threatened other schools with such requirements in order to reduce competition from out-of-state institutions. Berry says other schools have removed their ads over the issue.

Scott Sloan, the Tennessee agency’s general counsel, said they’ve yet to review the lawsuit and had no immediate comment.

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