Four former members of the Elwood school board are complaining about the way two current members decided to send a letter supporting the LIPA tax settlement case to the Town Board.
Rebecca Marcus, Andrew Kaplan,Dan Ciccone and Joseph Fusaro said that that the decision by board president James Tomeo and vice president Heather Mammolito, as members of the board’s elected legislative committee, lacked transparency and should have been discussed in a public session before it was sent. The letter urged the Town Board, which moved up the vote on the settlement from late September to Sept. 3, to approve the settlement to slash the assessment on the Northport power plant, which the board did.
“As trustees, we strove to act in the best interest of our constituents with utmost transparency and frequent communication,” the former trustees’ letter reads. “Given the breakdown in process perpetrated by the current officers of the Elwood Board of Education, we felt compelled to bring this to your attention.” Their letter notes that they were not taking a position on the LIPA decision itself but that they believed the trustees had failed to act transparently.
But Tomeo said their letter was shared with other members of the five-member board and that “no concerns were expressed.” He also said that the district’s attorney agreed that the letter did not violate any open meeting laws.
“There was no vote, no motion was made, this was advocacy in the form of a letter,” Tomeo said.