GOWANDA: Careless act hikes costs

Two Gowanda Board of Education members who wanted to reduce expenses for the district have ended up being a burden.

Both Janet Vogtli and David Barnes have been charged with official misconduct pursuant to New York state Education Law after a public rant about teachers and administrators not working hard enough. The two also were rude, telling other board members to “shut up” and used profanity during the Zoom meeting earlier this spring that is available to the public through the Gowanda Central School’s web site.

Barnes and Vogtli, as we noted earlier, were not out of line to discuss looking at savings and possibly even job cuts. During this incredibly stressful time, many businesses and public entities have to rethink how they are running operations. With revenues slowing to a trickle, there are no easy answers.

That being said, there are better ways to take on discussions. The poor communication tactics by both Barnes and Vogtli has led to the charges and a petition seeking removal of both board members. That is adds up to an unplanned expense.

“Moving forward, there would not be additional costs if they would resign. … Obviously, we are doing our part to make sure we continue to advocate for the community,” said board member Dana Szalay-Delaney. “I know that cost is always a sensitive issue. This does come with a cost, but if there was a resignation, it would be far less.”

Every action has a consequence. While both board members were looking at the bottom line, their poor attitudes have backfired. It is an ironic twist.


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