The board of visitors or other governing body of every state institution of higher education and every private accredited nonprofit institution of higher education in the Commonwealth may provide by regulation for the care, restitution, sale, destruction or disposal of unclaimed personal property, whether lost or abandoned, in the possession of the institution. Whenever procedures in accordance with such regulations and this section are followed and ownership cannot be established with respect to certain property, the institution, and the employees and agents thereof, shall have no liability to any person claiming any interest in the property.
1. The institution, upon receipt of lost property, shall make reasonable efforts to give notice that the property has been found to any person the institution determines reasonably appears to be the owner. The property shall be held by the institution for a period of not less than 120 days. The institution shall allow a claim upon satisfactory proof of it and payment of the institution’s reasonable charges for storage or other services necessary to preserve the property.
2. After the 120-day period, the institution may sell the property to the highest bidder at public auction or by sealed bid at whatever location the institution reasonably determines affords the most favorable market for the property. The institution may decline the highest bid and reoffer the property for sale if it considers the price bid insufficient. The net proceeds of any sale hereunder shall be held for a period of ninety days and if no claim is made thereon within that time, such funds shall be credited to the institution’s operating fund. If the institution determines that the probable cost of sale of property will exceed the sale proceeds, the property is inherently dangerous, or the property may not lawfully be sold or used, the institution may provide for any such property, as appropriate under the circumstances, to be destroyed or discarded at an appropriate location, retained for use by the institution, or donated to an appropriate charitable organization.
3. Any sale held hereunder shall be preceded by reasonable notice thereof, considering the type and value of property. Such notice shall include as a minimum the posting on a student bulletin board and publication in a school newspaper. The institution, by the same time, shall mail notice of the sale to the last known address of any person the institution determines reasonably appears to be the owner.
B. Whenever a motor vehicle is abandoned on the campus of any institution that lies within a county, city, or town which has adopted an ordinance as provided in Chapter 12 of Title 46.2, such motor vehicle shall be disposed of as provided in that ordinance. Notwithstanding any provisions of Chapter 12 of Title 46.2, the proceeds of any sale of a motor vehicle abandoned and unclaimed on institutional property shall be credited to the institution’s operating fund after the ninety-day holding period. The board of visitors or other governing body of an institution of higher education having a campus or part of a campus lying in a locality which has not adopted such an ordinance, may promulgate a regulation dealing with motor vehicles abandoned within such campus or part of campus. Such regulations shall comply with all provisions of Chapter 12 of Title 46.2 and shall have the same legal effect as though the institution were a political subdivision as defined in that chapter and the regulation was an ordinance. The proceeds from any sale resulting from such regulations shall be held for a period of ninety days and if no claim is made therefor within that time, such funds shall be credited to the institution’s operating fund.
C. Whenever any intangible personal property is believed to be abandoned or unclaimed on the campus of a state institution of higher education, it shall be administered as provided in Article 4 (§ 55-210.12 et seq.) of Chapter 11.1 of Title 55.
D. Whenever any personal property, tangible or intangible, has been accepted for safekeeping during a patient’s stay by any hospital operated by a state institution of higher education, and said property is believed by the appropriately designated official to be abandoned or unclaimed, it shall be administered as provided in Article 4 (§ 55-210.12 et seq.) of Chapter 11.1 of Title 55.
1981, c. 517; 1982, c. 210.