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School District 55 misses February board meeting

February 28, 2013

While many urgent issues need to be addressed, Blackfoot School District 55 trustees will not have a school board meeting in the month of February, because of a lack of a quorum to legally conduct business.
The trustees have not had a board meeting since Jan. 17. The board has been short of members since trustees Scott Reese and Jenny Hong resigned in early February in the wake of a recall effort. Trustee Pete Lipovac, who replaced Reese as the trustee chairman, had an emergency arise and has been unable to attend a meeting this month, leaving only board trustees Mary Jo Marlow and Taylor Johansen.
While still reeling from the "Scott Crane payout debacle," the board faces many challenges including appointing board members to replace Reese and Hong, the hiring of a new superintendent to replace former superintendent [Scott] Crane, the $1,975,000 supplemental levy election on March 12 and the school board elections on May 21. The trustees were hoping to have a new superintendent hired by March 1.
Rick Bigler, spokesperson for Concerned Citizens of District 55, a group formed in January to monitor the board's actions and decisions and help improve public relations with the district, admits that "it is a bit of a struggle" to conduct business with just three left on the board.
"We are all just in a waiting mode," he noted. "The levy election is set for March and board elections must be held in May and we will see what happens."
The Morning News attempted to reach Lipovac for more information, but calls were not returned. Interim superintendent Chad Struhs was unavailable for comment.
A date for a March meeting has not yet been announced.

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