Three Lafayette Parish School Board members could be fined for excessive absences, according to LPSB policy and state law.
Those reps are Tommy Angelle, Rae Trahan, and Greg Awbrey. All three have absences in the double-digits, with Angelle, as IND Monthly noted earlier this week, holding the lead at 21 misses. IND Monthly calculated those numbers from attendance records spanning Jan. 1 through Nov. 28.
Not counting skipped workshops and public hearings, or special meetings scheduled the same day as a regular meeting, the record still shows eight unexcused absences apiece for Angelle, Awbrey and Trahan. According to policy:
A School Board member will be allowed to miss up to five regular, special or committee meetings of the Board. Any School Board member exceeding five absences will forfeit $100 per meeting. The only exception to the above rule would be attendance at State Convention, National Convention, work or hospitalization. Any Board member exceeding five meetings must present a written excuse to the President, and the Board would rule on whether it qualifies as an exception within the guidelines stated above.
“We’re going to be taking care of that,” says board President Shelton Cobb, who, along with fellow board member Kermit Bouillion, has attended every school board function this year.
Cobb tells IND Monthly that he plans to speak with school board attorney James Simon to determine what steps are required in order to enforce the excessive absence policy.
Based on IND Monthly’s calculations, Angelle, with eight absences, is subject to $300 in fines. Since one excused absence has been logged for both Awbrey (who says he was ill) and Trahan (who was out for “business”), their individual liability is only $200, considering they don’t miss any more meetings this year.
“We don’t check very often on our attendance, but if it’s called to our attention, we will take appropriate action,” adds Cobb.
Click here to read "Tommy takes the title" — IND Monthly's most recent look at the school board's attendance issue.