Reorganization yields deadlock

 

BY JOHN LUND

Wyoming County Press Examiner

 

The Tunkhannock Area School Board met Thursday night to reorganize following last month’s election, but after three votes, it left deadlocked without a temporary leader, and no other business was conducted.

Both the sitting board president, Mick Cronin, and secretary, Sandra Lane, were nominated for temporary president, but two different votes had the same result, 4-4.

Lane then withdrew her candidacy, and Kim Teeters was nominated to oppose Cronin. The vote again was 4-4.

Voting for Cronin were Lori Bennett, Philip Farr, Bill Weidner and himself.

Voting for Lane and Teeters were William Swilley, Rob Parry and themselves.

Prior to the meeting, new members Farr and Swilley were sworn into office, along with Parry who was recently reelected.

At the start of Thursday’s public meeting Cronin, who was also recently reelected, was sworn in.

Another individual, Paul Lupinski, who attained the largest number of write-in votes in the Nov. 5 election, was not present, and in fact, indicated later in the month he would not serve, leaving the board with an even number of eight eligible voters on Thursday.

Tunkhannock Area Superintendent Michael Healey said that school district solicitor Frank Tunis would have to ask for a “release of law” with Wyoming County President Judge Russell Shurtleff on Friday.

The release was to allow for the appointment of a ninth school board member by the sitting board members, so future votes would not likely be deadlocked.

At press time Tuesday, the prothonotary’s office noted that no “release of law” request had been filed in the courts.

Thursday’s session was suspended (not adjourned) and if it met the judge’s approval the reorganization meeting would then be continued on Dec. 11 at 7:30 p.m.

Those present were told that an executive session meeting regarding contract negotiations was still on the calendar for Tuesday night (Dec. 10).

It was confirmed Tuesday afternoon with board secretary P.J. O’Shea, that the Wednesday  meeting would take place.