Bettsville appoints interim treasurer

BETTSVILLE Four members of the Bettsville Board of Education passed a resolution to appoint an interim treasurer during a special meeting Tuesday evening.

The board appointed Jaime Pearson to serve as Bettsville’s interim treasurer until further notice, effective immediately.

Pearson also serves as the treasurer for Old Fort Local Schools.

During a meeting last week, Bettsville’s board placed treasurer Roger Luhring on paid administrative leave. Board President Michelle Davis said Lurhring is to remain on administrative leave, but the board has begun the termination process.

No comments were made from the board on the reason behind the termination. Luhring was not present at the meeting and did not provide any comment.

The board entered into executive session “pertaining to the appointment, employment, dismissal, discipline, promotion, demotion, or compensation of public employees or regulated individuals, or the investigation of charges or complaints against a public employee or regulated individual unless such a person requests a public hearing.”

No action was taken.

Thursday, two members of the Old Fort and Bettsville boards are to meet with state representatives to further discuss the possibility of forgiving some or all of Bettsville’s debt and to further discuss the proposed transfer of territory from Bettsville to Old Fort.

Present during the meeting are to be state Sen. Dave Burke, R-Marysville; representatives from the Ohio Auditor of State’s Office, Ohio School Facilities and Ohio Department of Education; Ohio Department of Education fiscal advisor Barb Bechtel; Bettsville Superintendent Gregg Pettit; Old Fort Interim Superintendent Larry Hodges; treasurer for both boards, Jaime Pearson; Old Fort Board President Gary Cole and Vice President Lindsey Sooy; Bettsville Board President Michelle Davis and Vice President LeighAnn King; and the vice president for the Local Grant Innovative Fund.

“As of right now, Old Fort cannot accept our district with the amount of debt we have,” Davis said. “We are to discuss our options to help alleviate the debt so that the transfer could take effect before July 1, 2014.”

Currently, Bettsville has a projected debt of $775,000 as stated by Ohio Auditor Dave Yost. The district was placed in fiscal emergency at the beginning of this month.