Palmerton tables motion on interim business manager
A Palmerton Area School District administrator originally hired on an interim basis must await word to see when or if she'll be kept on to serve in another capacity.
The school board unanimously agreed at a special meeting on Tuesday to table a motion to appoint Donna Les from interim business manager to financial consultant, effective March 28.
Prior to the vote, resident William Ravert questioned why the board even considered the move when the district already employs business administrator Lisa Vignone.
Board President Barry Scherer told Ravert the reason was because Vignone - who returned to her position March 28 after she had been out on extended leave since Dec. 13 - hasn't had any involvement with next year's budget.
"Ms. Vignone has not been involved with any of the [2011-12] budget," Scherer said. "There's a lot of detailed work with this budget, and we feel it's in the district's best interest to keep Ms. Les on."
Resident Kerry Beidleman questioned why there was no reference in the motion to the amount of hours or pay Les would receive if she were appointed as financial consultant.
"Donna Les did an outstanding job putting the budget together", Beidleman said. "To me, Lisa's done like 15 budgets, and I would think there would be a certain amount of hours or pay."
However, Scherer said the board wasn't at liberty to discuss the matter in a public forum.
"Part of this is a personnel issue," Scherer said. "We can't discuss that."
Les was hired Jan. 5 as part-time, interim acting business manager, effective Jan. 5, at the rate of $300 per day.
Also on Tuesday, the board unanimously accepted the resignation of Vignone as board secretary and Carbon County tax collection committee delegate, effective immediately.
After the meeting, Superintendent Carol Boyce said Vignone chose to resign from those positions because of "personal reasons." Vignone will continue to serve in her capacity as business administrator, Boyce said.
In July, the board approved a new four-year contract for Vignone in which she was to receive a 2.75-percent salary increase in 2010-11, 3-percent in 2011-12, 3.25-percent in 2012-13, and 3.5-percent in 2013-14.
In other business, the board:
- Accepted, on an 8-0 vote with one abstention, the bid of $55,900 from FJ Lesher General Contractor for the chemistry lab ventilation, to be paid from the 2010a bond fund. Scherer abstained from the vote because his son-in-law works for the company.
- Accepted the bid of $19,025 from Fourmen for the warehouse roof replacement project, to be paid from the 2010a bond fund.
- Approved, on a 6-3 vote, the advertisement for sealed bids for the high school roofing project. Directors Michael Ballard, Darlene Yeakel, Stuart Henritzy, Clarence Myers, Susan Debski, and Scherer were in favor. Directors Carl Bieling, Carol Dwyer and Tina Snyder were opposed.
- Rejected, on a 6-3 vote, the PDE 3074 (a) Non-Reimbursable work document for the high school tennis court surface restoration. Bieling, Dwyer, Snyder, Ballard, Henritzy and Myers were opposed. Scherer, Yeakel and Debski were in favor.
- Approved the PDE 3074 (a) Non-Reimbursable work document for the S.S. Palmer repair of front steps.
- Approved, on a 6-3 vote, the PDE 3074 (a) Non-Reimbursable work document for the high school roofing project. Ballard, Yeakel, Henritzy, Myers, Debski and Scherer were in favor. Bieling, Dwyer and Snyder were opposed.
- Rejected all athletic/athletic medical bids for the 2011-12 school year.
- Approved the readvertisement of the athletic/athletic medical bids for the 2011-12 school year.
- Approved to grant a right-of-way to PPL for one pole, three anchors and overhead wiring to provide a three-phase service to the Towamensing Township building off Route 209.
- Agreed to remove the bidding software module from the table.
- Approved to add the bidding software module from Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit to the financial software package. The cost will be approximately $1,200 per year (a fee based upon student enrollment), effective July 1, 2011.
- Removed the purchase of sufficient user ids for the electronic purchase order feature of fund accounting from the table.
- Approved the purchase of sufficient user identifications to implement the electronic purchase order feature of the fund accounting software. The fee is $75 per user id. It is anticipated that five user ids will be needed for an approximate cost of $375 per year.
- Approved the request of the Towamensing Elementary kindergarten class for a field trip to Camden Adventure Aquarium, Camden, NJ, with Joan Kasko and Linda Strohl, on April 15, with expenses to be paid by the PTO with no cost to the district.