Below is the report upon which the old McHenry County College Board voted for 5-2.
Well, it’s not quite what the Board voted on.
The Board did not set President Vicky Smith’s compensation.
Read the report carefully.
Voting in favor were the two longest serving Board members who lost the election–Barbara Walters and Carol Larson. They were joined by holdovers Mary Miller, Linda Liddell and Cynthia Kisser.
Voting against extending MCC President Vicky Smith’s contract through the middle of 2015 were Ron Parrish and Dennis Adams. It was almost Adams’ last vote since he retired from the Board.
To understand what happened at Thursday night McHenry County Board meeting, you need to read this report carefully.
Do you see the problem?
Read the recommendation:
It is recommended that the Board of Trustees approves extending Dr. Smith’s contract through June 30, 2015 and to set compensation as discussed in Closed Session.
Do you note that the report does not tell the public the salary and benefits?
I surely did and was ready to file complaints with both the McHenry County State’s Attorney and the Illinois Attorney General about the seeming violation of the Open Meetings Act had the Board approved the report as presented in the Board Packet.
But the old members didn’t do that.
After the closed session, undoubtedly upon the advice of their attorneys, the Board considered a motion which excluded compensation
So, the outgoing Board got half of what it wanted.
Smith’s contract has been extended another twelve months after June 30. 2014, but her salary has not been set.
Newly-elected McHenry County College Board members Chris Jenner, Tom Wilbeck and Molly Walsh were sworn in four and a half hours after the meetings began.
That will be up to the carryover Board members and those newly-elected and now sworn in:
- Molly Walsh
- Chris Jenner
- Tom Welbeck
A new Student Trustee named Michele Lambert was previously sworn in.
There was public comment from 6:30 to 7:45. Again there was not enough room for the taxpaying public. Overflow folks were directed to the auditorium way across campus.
But, there were almost a row and half out of the three rows of chairs reserved for MCC employees who certainly could have sat in chairs outside until their turn in the program came.
The commenters were divided into three parts:
- Those supporting an extension of Smith’s contract
- Those opposed to an extension of Smith’s contract
- Those supporting the theater program whose 80-seat Black Box Theater seems destined to become the location of a greatly expanded robotics program
I’d love to give you a blow-by-blow account of the comments, but the new Board didn’t adjourn until 12:10 Friday.
Suffice is to say that both Chris Jenner and Molly Walsh asked the old Board not to extend Smith’s contract.
Jenner pointed out that there were nearing three months for the holdover Board members to explain to the new Trustees why Smith deserved to have her contract extended.
“I don’t believe any of us have passed judgment on Dr. Smith.”
“I really feel strongly that the incoming Board should be making the decision on terms and working conditions,” Walsh added as the last one to provide public comment.
“An action tonight is really disregarding the new Board members.
“Lets work together.”
Their pleas were ignored.
Very shortly after the old Board took its last gasp by voting for Smith’s contract extension, the new Board was sworn in. That was at 10:45 Thursday night.
From foreground going around the table are Trustee Cynthia Kisser, Secretary Chris Jenner, Student Trustee Michele Lambert, MCC President Vicky Smith, Board President Ron Parrish and Trustees Molly Walsh and Tom Wilbeck, Vice Chair Linda Liddell and outgoing Board President Mary Miller.
Then, the tables were turned.
Jenner nominated Ron Parrish to be the new Board President. Wilbeck provided the second.
Liddell nominated Kisser. I believe Miller seconded that nomination.
Three to three.
The deciding vote seemed to belong to newcomer Walsh.
A secret ballot was taken and the vote came out 4-3 in favor of Parrish, who had been very much the minority member on the old Board.
For Vice Chair, it was Wilbeck vs. Liddell.
3-3 with, I presume, Walsh breaking the tie in favor of Liddell.
Wilbeck nominated Jenner for Secretary and no one else wanted the job so he got it.