Updated: January 19, 2013 6:07AM
Johnson not to blame
Annette Johnson, our East Aurora School Board president, has come under a lot of scrutiny from another board member and the media and the rest of the board has been portrayed as a bunch of “do nothings” that follow whatever Johnson says.
Nothing could be farther from the truth. In the case of Richard Leonard, he was the one that first uncovered the inconsistencies in the Building and Grounds Department. He sifted through stacks of papers to uncover the 800 trips to Menards, the questionable receipts, and the fact that no purchase orders and accompanying receipts were available as per board policy.
His initial investigations have led to shake ups, but because it was Johnson acting as our public voice, she is the one that has been shouldering the complaints by angry staff and the media.
The latest controversy that has landed Johnson in the spotlight involves a janitorial contract. In June the janitorial supply contract came up for bid. After following the district bid policy the low bidder was not the company that the district has used for years, and this caused a great deal of grief among the Building and Grounds supervisors. It appeared that they were doing everything in their control to undermine the board and the decision to use a group of new suppliers that were going the save the district hundreds of thousands of dollars along with introducing a green program that will benefit the health and safety of our students and staff.
As orders kept going to the old supplier instead of the new suppliers, Dr. (Superintendent Jerome) Roberts and Johnson met with the B and G staff to resolve the issues. This, for some reason, made (board member Ray) Hull upset and he felt the way to handle it was to cause a fight at the committee meeting.
Hull stands alone when he makes comments about the board not working together and his opinions about the district. I think I can speak for the rest of the board members when I say that we have a great deal of respect for the job that Johnson has done. We are all proud of the changes we are making to correct problems that have been allowed to exist for years.
East Aurora School Board secretary