District 2 BOE seat decision might go to state

Published 4:00 pm Friday, August 26, 2022

The decision on who will replace former Clark County Public Schools Board of Education member Brenda Considine might be going to the state, according to Interim Superintendent Elmer Thomas.

Thomas said the sheer number of applicants is why the board is consulting with the Kentucky Department of Education about the decision.

“We received nine applications, and we were initially trying to set up interviews for Wednesday and Thursday,” Thomas said. “So I am now in the process where I have reached to the KDE to see what the total process is if the KDE makes the selection.”

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The board went into closed session during its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday and had two special-called meetings scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday that were canceled.

Thomas confirmed that officials at the KDE informed him they were monitoring the matter and that he was still waiting to hear what the next step from them would be.

The KDE did tell Thomas the volume of candidates is a blessing.

“It’s like the commissioner said – having multiple candidates – that is a good problem to have,” Thomas said.

Per Kentucky law, the board has 60 days from the date it accepted Considine’s resignation to fill the seat from the pool of applicants with a majority vote.

Kentucky Education Commissioner Jason Glass would have 60 days to make the appointment if the board cannot select a candidate.

The journey to this point has had several stops along the way.

Considine resigned with little explanation, effective July 14th, and the board voted to accept her resignation on Aug. 2nd.

The Sun previously reported earlier this month that the seat was scheduled to be on the ballot in this November’s election after the school district communicated to the Kentucky Secretary of State’s office and the Clark County Clerk that it would be vacant as of July 26th.

The school district contended that the communication was sent in error and argued through its legal counsel that since the resignation was accepted after Aug. 1st, there was no need for it to be on the ballot.

Kentucky law states that a vacant school board seat election must happen at the next scheduled election. However, several Kentucky Attorney General opinions argue that a resignation accepted after Aug. 1st does not have to be on the ballot that same year but should happen the year after.

Clark County Clerk Michelle turner sought guidance from the secretary of state’s office on the matter, who told her to consult the county attorney. Clark County Attorney William Elkins said he was of the opinion that the board would handle the appointment with the need for an election.

Other board of education news:

During Tuesday’s meeting, the board heard a proposal that would raise real and personal property tax rates for a second consecutive year if approved.

The proposal would raise the rates by one cent from 64.9 cents per $100 evaluation to 65.9 cents per evaluation. The tax on motor vehicles – 53.5 cents per $100 evaluation would stay the same.

Per Kentucky law, the board is required to hold a public hearing on the matter, which will be scheduled for a future date.

The board also heard an update on the new preschool project.

Administrative Director of Operations Donald Stump said the district will start receiving bids to build the preschool beginning Sept. 13th and that he will present them to the board on the 27th.