Official: Mayors OK'd School Committee Notes
Mendham Township claims advisory group's last session not recorded properly, despite signing off on meeting's minutes.
After a contentious meeting of the Mendham Township Committee showed the municipality's governing body was more frustrated than ever regarding the actions of the West Morris Regional Education Advisory Committee, recorded notes have been made available for publication.
At the heart of the conversation at the Monday night session was the committee's unwillingness to move forward with a feasibility study that would include an option combining all local school districts in Washington Township, the Chesters and the Mendhams into one mega-school district.
But in the heat of the discussion, Mendham Township Committeeman Frank Cioppetini claimed, for a second time, minutes from the meeting were not properly recorded and were missing pertinent information.
The advisory committee's chairperson, Christine Meyers-Gorski who attended the Mendham Township meeting, but was not at the previous advisory committee meeting because of medical issues, said, “Frank, to suggest that no minutes were taken, after I have stated that minutes were taken and turned around for verification and edits isn’t accurate."
“You were not there,” Cioppettini said. “There was no mention of (Washington Township Mayor) Mr. Short making his admission to conflict of interest.”
On the contrary, however, according to the advisory committee's vice chairman James Harmon, who presided over the previous meeting.
"The minutes did indeed reflect the statement by Mayor Short regarding a possible conflict which he was investigating with an attorney," Harmon said in an email to Patch on Thursday.
At the last meeting, Short said because of West Morris Regional School District bonds he owns, he sought legal advice to see if he was violating a conflict of interest. Short has since told Patch, based on counsel from his attorney, there is no conflict of interest regarding his involvement in the advisory committee.
Harmon said another member of the committee took notes during the last meeting on June 7, which were then forwarded to him and Meyers-Gorski the following day.
The vice chairman then incorporated his own notes, he said, and sent the draft of minutes to the mayors a few days later for accuracy review.
"Each mayor had an opportunity to make corrections and clarifications to all participants, including (Mendham Township Mayor) Mr. Tolley, by email soon thereafter."
Those finalized minutes are attached to this article in PDF format.
The next meeting of the West Morris Regional Education Advisory Committee is set for July 19 at the Garabrand Center in Mendham Borough at 7 p.m.
This article is posted on Long Valley and Mendham-Chester Patch.