Drop this one in the Say What? category. Ward Twelve School Committeewoman Elect Connie Van Houten has filed suit against the Manchester School District for wrongful termination. Girard at Large has learned that Van Houten’s contract with the district to teach English as a Second Language was not renewed in two thousand twelve. During the campaign, Van Houten touted her teaching experience, which included teaching English to non-English speaking adults at the Manchester School of Technology. In interviews conducted after learning about the suit last night, Mayor Ted Gatsas confirmed he’d been served papers by the Sheriff”s office yesterday afternoon and School Board Vice Chair David Gelinas said he was unaware of the suit. Both expressed their surprise. Our call to Hillsborough County Sheriff Jim Hardy to find out why a lawsuit filed on October twenty eighth wasn’t served until yesterday was not returned, nor was our call to Van Houten. Christine Duffley, who lost to Van Houten by a mere forty four votes in Tuesday’s election emailed a statement in response to our inquiry saying she was disappointed to learn of the development and said it presented a conflict of interest that voters should have known about before Election Day. However, she noted she’d continue to offer her support and collaboration to Van Houten as she prepares to take office. As more details come available we will report them here. You can bet we’ll have something to say about this during today’s show.
As predicted yesterday, the special meeting of the Hooksett School Board called for November 18th by Board Vice Chair David The Pariah Pearl and Board Clerk John Angry Elf Lyscars won’t have a quorum. Emails obtained by Girard at Large show board members Phil Dumbo Denbow and Board Chair Trisha The Gavel Korkosz asserting scheduling conflicts that prevent them from attending and board member Cheryl BT Akstin stating she won’t attend. Korkosz, the last of the three to reply to the special meeting call sent by Pearl and Lyscars, stated that because there won’t be a quorum, there can be no meeting. In response to our inquiry, Pearl and Lyscars stated they’d asked Superintendent Charles Chucky The Super Littlefield to post the meeting as called in the hope that one of the other three may be able to attend. They said, regardless of a quorum, they will present the information that currently exists on the proposed contracts and dialogue with whomever attends.
In a related story, at its recent meeting, the Hooksett Board shot down a motion by Lyscars to survey Hooksett’s eighth grade class to see how many kids were planning on attending Manchester schools in the fall so they could provide the city with an estimate by December 1st as required in the settlement. The Gavel and Chucky The Super argued that the motion was premature because they’d not presented options to the public, which has been put off until the end of November, and Dumbo Denbow, whose now earned his wrastlin’ name, before it just rhymed, suggested Chucky just pick up the phone and work it out with Manchester Superintendent Debra Livingston if the town couldn’t provide an estimate by the deadline. Pearl and Lyscars argued that the board approved the agreement with Manchester, and agreement they opposed, and scoffed at the idea that Manchester could or should just ignore the settlement’s terms, especially since it was a court approved mediated agreement. We have video. It’s a head shaker.
News from our own backyard continues after this.
The tax rate in the town of Merrimack has been set and the tax bills sent. Overall, the town’s tax rate climbed by seventy cents per thousand to twenty three dollars and ninety one cents , an increase of three percent. By far the largest increase was generated by school spending. Tax rates for municipal services and county taxes increased slightly as well. There was a small decrease in the state school rate. We’ve posted the details with this news cast at Girard at Large dot com. Tax bills are due no later than Wednesday, December 18th.
Finally this morning, Manchester Police have arrested the third suspect believed to have committed at least three armed robberies in the Queen City, the most recent of which was the Election Day heist at the N & K Market on Pearl Street, just blocks from where I live. Yikes! Arrested yesterday was twenty two year old Jarrell Wilson of Manchester. In addition to knocking over the market on Pearl Street, Wilson and his cohorts Lacy Clagon twenty three of Manchester and Sarah Flonory-Schneider, twenty of Manchester are also suspected in the armed robberies of the Union Street Market and Michelle’s Bakery on Union Street. Wilson was taken without incident after being spotted by police on Union Street.
That’s news from our own backyard, Girard at Large hour ___ is straight ahead.