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Baldwin-Whitehall Hires New Business Manager, Human Resources Director

William McNamee, current business manager, is retiring in December.

The Baldwin-Whitehall School District will replace a retiring employee in December and make way for a new position at the same time, the B-W School Board decided on Wednesday night.

The board voted, 8-1, to hire Mark R. Cherpak as its new business manager, effective Dec. 3, at an annual salary of $98,000. Cherpak will eventually replace current Business Manager William McNamee, who will retire on Dec. 21.

The board also approved the hire, by a 7-2 vote, of Christopher Constantine for the district's newly created director of human resources position. Constantine's hire also takes effect on Dec. 3, and he will receive an annual salary of $90,000.

District Superintendent Dr. Randal A. Lutz said that Baldwin-Whitehall currently splits up its human resources duties among many employees, including Human Resources Manager Jennifer Seitzinger, who will be retained, and even Lutz himself.

Constantine's hire will alleviate most of those shared duties, Lutz said.

Lutz said that the two hires approved on Wednesday still leave the district at $420,000 less in administrative spending for the 2012-13 school year than was spent in 2011-12.

Lutz said during an interview after the meeting that a replacement is not being sought for William D. McKain, the district's former assistant to the superintendent for finance and operations, who left B-W this past summer to work for Allegheny County, or for John D. Wilkinson, the district's former assistant superintendent of secondary education, who left B-W at the end of the 2011-12 school year to work for the Belle Vernon Area School District.

The will also not be filled anytime soon, Lutz said, and the costs saved by not filling those positions will help to pay the new hires.

Board member Ray Rosing voted "no" on both new hires, saying that he only did so because he couldn't take part in the candidates' interview processes. Board member Nancy Sciulli DiNardo voted "no" on the Constantine hire but did not explain why.

Read through other Baldwin-Whitehall School Board items here.

And check back with the Baldwin-Whitehall Patch throughout Thursday for more news from Wednesday's school board meeting.

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Brian Rampolla November 14, 2012 at 02:03 AM
The first action for the new business manager should be to provide a new 5 year budget projection, because the last one from May 2011 showed significant upcoming deficits. Any board member who says the district is on solid financial ground is dead wrong. John Schmotzer pushed for the 0.5 mil tax increase last June saying "We are depleting our funds", and "We need the half-mil increase to maintain the financial stability of this district (Patch, 6/14/12). And how about this interesting exchange from the 6/6/12 board meeting minutes: “Mr. Schmotzer asked Mr. McNamee what will happen if the Board didn’t increase the millage this year and next and Mr. McNamee responded that we would be bankrupt in 2014-15 due to healthcare, PSERS, and teacher wage increases. Mr. Pry explained that we would not be bankrupt, but that the district would have to make drastic cuts which would be a long and involved process”. Seems to me that these statements are not consistent with a district on solid financial ground. We've been using the fund balance or one time sources of income to balance the budget over the last several years, including this year $1.4M for general purposes and $677K for designated purposes for a total of $2M. Last year's projections show a deficit of $3.7M projected for next year. Far from solid ground, we are on very, very thin ice. I am dumfounded as to why no one on this board has asked for the same information to guide their fiscal decisions.

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