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Nesquehoning man barred from Panther Valley school property

Published November 08. 2011 05:00PM

A Nesquehoning man whose temper has prompted Panther Valley school officials to summon police to board meetings is now barred from school district property.

The board, with directors Roy Angst and Irene Genther opposing and Koreen Nalesnik not voting, on Monday approved a resolution forbidding John Barna from the property.

No one answered the telephone at Barna's house early today.

Barna often becomes riled while speaking at board meetings, frequently engaging in shouting matches with board members and at times threatening people.

The latest fracas occurred at an Oct. 14 meeting, when he stormed out of the meeting room and into the hall, swearing in the presence of children who had attended to present their award-winning recycling program.

Barna's anger at that meeting was triggered by the board's refusal to accept his apology for an outburst at the previous night's Budget and Finance Committee meeting.

A letter was sent to Barna on Oct. 18, after he had been warned several times.

Angst initially asked to table the motion to bar Barna from school grounds. His motion was supported by Genther, but not the remaining board members and so failed.

Angst said the board's action was "partly based" on minutes of the Oct. 14 meeting, which he insists are inaccurate. He said he came to the administrative office and listened to tapes of the meeting, which confirmed his contention.

Angst said the minutes are "inaccurate on some very important points that I'm sure are going to be part of the lawsuit."

He did not offer details of what the suit involved, or who was filing it against whom.

He asked Director Donna Trimmel, who is the board secretary, whether she "took time to listen to those minutes?"

"I don't type the notes. I work full time," she said. Trimmel said she spoke with a woman who works in the office, and "she has no idea what you're talking about."

Angst said the employee agreed that was said on the tape was what what Angst believed was said.

A loud argument ensued between School Director Anthony DeMarco and Angst when DeMarco said Barna had cursed in front of students.

Board president Jeff Markovich rapped his gavel for order and for the vote to be taken on Angst's motion to table the resolution.

"This is very unfair," Angst said. "I have more points to make."

"You've made your point," Markovich said.

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