The Manatee County school board tonight postponed whether to reject a proposal from Florida State University for a settlement of the college’s claim that the “Seminoles” logo used by Southeast High School violates the college’s trademark.
Superintendent Tim McGonegal and district attorneys had previously recommended the board reject the proposed settlement, under which Southeast could use its logo for five years, for $1 a year. The agreement could then be renewed each subsequent year.
The move came after David Wilcox, a local attorney who lives in Bradenton, said he was asked by FSU President Eric Barron to speak on behalf of the university. He asked the board to consider postponing their vote to another meeting.
“This is not the end of the road and to draw a line, there is still an opportunity to resolve these issues,” Wilcox said.
He said he believed there is a resolution that both schools would find acceptable.
Prior to the vote, McGonegal had asked the board not to table the matter.“We believe we have an excellent legal case,” McGonegal told the board before they voted. “We have been using this logo for a long, long time. They’re greatly distinctive in color there is no way a FSU fan is going to buy our logo.”
McGonegal said he hoping FSU and the district can reach an agreement for perpetual use of the logo, not just for five years, then on a year to year basis.
“I would like to give staff at FSU and the Seminole club time to work on this,” school board Member Bob Gause said before the board agreed to postpone the vote.
For more, see Tuesday's Bradenton Herald.