Despite confirmation last month that Eric Hansen, USD 231 finance and business director, is no longer with the district, members of the board of education apparently have yet to approve of his termination or resignation at a board meeting. As of May 1, school officials would no longer confirm Hansen’s status with the school.
“It’s an ongoing personnel matter,” school communications director Leann Northway said.
In the meantime, she did confirm that Superintendent Bill Gilhaus is attending a series of meetings with staff at each of the district’s school buildings to discuss budget reductions.
She could not say what those reductions might be, just how tight the district’s budget is or how short the budget might be.
In a March 2011 presentation to the board, Hansen estimated a possible $573,000 revenue shortfall this year, and a shortfall of $1.1 million over the course of 18 months – excluding possible new expenses for 2012.
Hansen urged the diligent use of cash reserves, district-level and building-level reductions and a salary freeze during his March 7, 2011 presentation.
At this time Northway said she could not say who is acting in the role of budget director for the district.
According to Gilhaus’ contract, he can terminate and accept personnel resignations with board approval. But Gardner News reporters do not recall board members approving Hansen’s departure in a public meeting as the Kansas Open Meetings Act requires, and according to available board minutes, such a motion has not occurred.
Hansen and board members did not respond to inquiries from The Gardner News.