School board vote delays session

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The Raymore-Peculiar school board meeting was cut short unexpectedly when the board was split over the election of a new board president.

Joe Anthuis and Leo Anderson won their school board campaigns last Tuesday, but Anderson was absent from tonight’s meeting. Anthuis took his oath of office before the board moved on to the question of this year’s officers.

Ruth Johnson nominated Kim York, the current President, to take the same office for another year. Kyle Gillespie spoke up to nominate Anthuis. When the board took a vote, three members voted in favor of York, and three in favor of Anthuis.

Board Secretary Pam Steele explained that the vote would have to be taken again. Anderson was present via speakerphone but powerless to break the tie, as he was not physically present to take his oath of office.

Board members Joe Anthuis and Kim York look to secretary Pam Steele as the vote for President ended in a second tie.

Board members Joe Anthuis and Kim York look to secretary Pam Steele as the second vote for President ended in yet another tie.

Before the second round of voting began, nominators Johnson and Gillespie each spoke to their nominations.

Gillespie called Anthuis the “most experienced board member that we have.” He went on to say that “Joe’s depth and history would be crucial” at such a time of transition for the school district.

Johnson spoke to York’s experience and attention to detail. She said that York is good at “keeping on track,” and that she has also handled the transition phase well.

The second vote yielded the same results: three for York and three for Anthuis.

The two nominees each took a moment to commend themselves to their fellow board members. Anthuis, who was the board’s Vice President last year, explained that typically the VP cycles into the President’s position. York said that her job allows her the flexibility to be at events and perform the President’s duties, and that she has been working “in preparation for the transition.”

A third vote, however, proved that no one was swayed.

York requested that the vote be postponed until all board members could be present. The action of choosing officers must take place within the fourteen days after the election, so members ultimately settled on reconvening Monday, April 15, at 5 PM.

All other items on the agenda, including the election of other officers and the issue of employee benefit renewal and salary increase, were also pushed back until the next President is chosen.

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