Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The LuLac Edition #1993, March 21st, 2012

"Write On Wednesday" logo.



The Times Leader recently put forth an Editorial on the lack of action of the Wilkes Barre Area School Board regarding its finances and ability to understand simple tenants of math regarding rising legal bills. Here is their piece:
Scream or cry, but do something
Upon learning how badly the Wilkes-Barre Area School District botched its handling of skyrocketing legal service fees charged by attorney Anthony Lupas Jr., you might not know whether to scream or cry.
Our recommendation: Cry if you’re someone who values common sense. But if you pay taxes to this public school district, go ahead and scream, scream, scream.
Lupas, the district’s former solicitor, collected $328,956 in 2011 – nearly six times what he had been paid in 2008. Yet that’s not even the most galling part of this pathetic, if not entirely unpredictable, episode.
This is: The district can produce no written contract pertaining to the solicitor’s pay. Or, for that matter, for the assistant solicitor’s pay. “They’ve never had contracts as long as I’ve been here,” said Business Manager Leonard Przywara, who indicated that he has worked in the district about 20 years. Instead, the board habitually reappointed Lupas and set a retainer fee.
Lupas, 77, has not been charged with criminal wrongdoing. Federal authorities did visit the school district’s office Tuesday and asked about the attorney’s work and billing practices, the superintendent told reporter Mark Guydish of The Times Leader.
Separately, a pair of attorneys this week accused Lupas, father of Luzerne County Judge David Lupas, of defrauding several people out of more than $1.5 million via a multiyear investment scam. Those attorneys allege that Lupas used personal friendships to bilk area residents, including senior citizens, and they say that investigators are looking into the matter.
Regardless of whether Lupas did, or did not, act improperly, one wonders what it will take for the Wilkes-Barre Area School Board to pull its head from the sand. Stung in 2009 by three arrests of board members involved in separate public corruption crimes, the board has lagged in adopting any meaningful reforms.
In December 2010, its members hurried to renew Superintendent Jeff Namey’s contract, even though no new written contract then existed. Instead, the board majority apparently was content with an old contract containing some handwritten notes, which they were told would later be finalized.
This board, newly reconfigured in recent months, must immediately raise its professionalism, modify its practices and begin to rectify a twisted culture.
Barring that, area residents rightfully should call for administrative changes and board resignations. And by “call for,” we mean scream until those demands are met.
It’s your business
Attend the Wilkes-Barre Area School District’s regular board meetings at 6 p.m. on the second Wednesday of each month at the Administration Building, 730 S. Main St., Wilkes-Barre.


At 3:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why is the business manageer, superintendent of schools still employed there? Why hasn't the entire Board of Education resigned? Charges need to filed against all of them even if the charge is simply being STUPID!

At 9:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This board needs to walk the plank and swim with the sharks they fed to cruise the good ship WBASD Lolly Pop.


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