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Nickle and diming for another $39,000 on the way out the door.. Vallas demanding extra money from Connecticut on his way to serve on the 'Vallas - Quinn' gubernatorial ticket in Illinois

[Editor's Note: The following information was sent to us by Connecticut blogger Jonathan Pelto on January 4, 2014. The information is provided to our Illinois readers as it came from him. As readers know, Paul Vallas was selected by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn to be Quinn's running mate in the upcoming Illinois election. Vallas served as "Chief Executive Officer" of Chicago's public schools from July 1, 1995 until June 30, 2001, when he was replaced by Arne Duncan. Vallas then ran for the Democratic nomination for Governor in early 2002, but lost to Rod Blagojevich. Apparently Vallas will not be receiving medical insurance while he is running with Quinn, so he is trying to get Connecticut to pay for it even though he has basically left his work there. Apparently, Paul Vallas didn't tell the people of Connecticut that he wrangled an extra hundred thousand dollars in "consulting" work out of Chicago Public Schools when Mayor Richard M. Daley ousted him from the job after a series of expensive debacles ending in June 2001.].

Part of the corporate propaganda on behalf of Paul Vallas during his tenure in Chicago was from Forbes magazine, which was about to dub him "Chainsaw Paul" after Al Dunlap, who had bled several corporations before being caught in accounting fraud and other misdeeds, some of which helped bankrupt Chicago's Sunbeam corporation. When Business Week reporter John Byrne began reporting that "Chainsaw Al" was a fraud, Forbes decided that Paul Vallas would have to miss out on the chance to be "Chainsaw Paul."News Flash Update: Vallas demands money to leave the position he has already resigned from

Paul Vallas, one of the corporate education reform industrys most celebrated figures has reached new heights when it comes to the corporate reform industrys level of arrogance and a sense of entitlement.

Vallas, who was wooed to Connecticut by Governor Malloys Commissioner of Education Stefan Pryor and appointed to the position of Bridgeports Superintendent of Schools by the illegal Bridgeport Oversight Board appointed by Governor Malloy is now demanding that the taxpayers of Bridgeport and Connecticut pay him despite the fact that he has already announced that he is leaving to return to Illinois to run for public office.

As noted earlier today in a Wait, What? post entitled News Flash: Vallas now says he didnt announce his resignation Nov 8th after all, wants more money, Vallas has managed to come up with one last absolutely unbelievable insult to the taxpayers of Bridgeport and Connecticut.

Paul Vallas and his lawyers have told the Bridgeport Board of Education that widely publicized November 8, 2013 letter that Vallas sent to the Bridgeport Board of Education and to all teachers and staff in the Bridgeport School System was not an actual letter of resignation but a letter announcing that at a later date he would be announcing that he was resigning in order to return to Illinois to run for Lt. Governor.

Paul G. Vallas returns to Illinois to be Governor Pat Quinn's running mate in the 2014 gubernatorial election. Quinn selected Vallas, who began corporate "school reform" in Chicago following the passage of the Amendatory Act of 1995 and the onset of mayoral control, without telling Chicago Teachers Union leaders. Quinn was elected because of the teacher support he received in 2010, but will not receive that in 2014 thanks to the Vallas decision. According to the contract between Paul Vallas and the Bridgeport Board of Education, the City of Bridgeport must pay Vallas a full years salary of $234,000 if they fire him. However, Vallas can leave at any time as long as he provides the Bridgeport Board of Education with 60-days notice.

By any reasonable standard, the 60-day period contained in Vallas contract should have begun on November 8, 2013 meaning that his employment as Superintendent should have ended on January 7, 2014.

But four days after Vallas announced his intent to resign, the Bridgeport Board of Education held a special meeting on Monday, November 12, 2103 to discuss the timing of Vallas departure.

According to the official transcript of the meeting, when Paul Vallas was asked about his November 8th letter and why it did not include a specific date for his departure, Vallas responded:

Actually, I felt that it would be important to have a conversation with the board, either the existing board or the new incoming board, to determine when those sixty days will beginSo the clock begins to tick when the board decides that it should tick. So in a nutshell, I want to give the board the flexibility to determine a transition that theyre most comfortable with.

Moments later the transcript reflects that Vallas added;

Id also point out that I will be exiting without requesting any sort of payout or settlement or anything like that that was awarded to the last superintendent.

And when asked directly about his exit date Vallas responded;

I just didnt want to dictate to the board, but rather I wanted the board to have input and make that determination so that we could so that the board was comfortable with it. So thats the reason that I left the letter open like that, so you would have the opportunity to say sixty days starts today or sixty days starts December 1st or whatever you would be comfortable with.

With that as the back drop, a few weeks later, on December 9, 2013 the Bridgeport Board of Education held another meeting and with Vallas in attendance voted 7-1 to accept Vallas resignation. The Bridgeport Board of Educations resolution reads;

. . . pursuant to Clause 6(ii) of the Employment Agreement, dated June 24, 2013, between the Bridgeport Board of Education and Paul G. Vallas, . . . the Bridgeport Board of Education does hereby accept the resignation of Superintendent Paul G. Vallas . . . said resignation to take effect 60 days following the date of the adoption of this resolution.

The impact of the vote was to set Vallas last day as Bridgeports Superintendent as February 7, 2014.

However, in a stunning turn of events, an out-of-state lawyer for Paul Vallas is now claiming that while his letter of November 8, 2013 did indicate his plan to resign it was not the sixty (60) day letter of resignation as required by his employment agreement.

Instead, according to multiple sources, an official letter of resignation arrived late yesterday from Paul Vallas informing the Bridgeport Board of Education that he would resign his position effective March 1, 2014.

If this outrage is allowed to stand, taxpayers would be forced to pay Vallas another $39,834 in salary plus benefits!

Considering the State of Connecticut picks up something close to 80% of the Bridgeports education budget, Vallas move would actually cost Connecticut taxpayers more than $35,000 and counting.

This is after the City of Bridgeport and the State of Connecticut spent well in excess of $100,000 to defend Vallas (and Commissioner Stefan Pryor) when they tried to pass off a three-credit independent study course as the school leadership program that the Connecticut Legislature required Vallas to complete.

But the real kicker is that according to the Connecticut Post, Vallas is willing to make a deal.

The Connecticut Post explains that, The issue is apparently over health insurance. Vallas, who sought legal counsel, wants the school board to cover his health insurance through June 2014.

So despite announcing his intention to resign on November 8th and being present and nodding his head and verbally agreeing when the Bridgeport Board of Education adopted a resolution ending Vallas contract on February 7, 2014, Vallas will apparently agree to leave immediately if Bridgeport and Connecticut taxpayers cough up $10,000-$12,000 to pay for his health insurance benefits through the rest of the school year.

So according to Vallas the choice is simple. Pay him $40,000 for salary and benefits or pay $10,000 plus for his health insurance premiums through June.

Where I come from, that is either called bribery or grand larceny depending on what action Bridgeports Board of Education takes.

It will be interesting to see if Mayor Bill Finch, Commissioner Stefan Pryor and Governor Malloy step in to protect the taxpayers of Bridgeport and Connecticut or allow Vallas to get another $10,000 or more in this smash and grab maneuver.

Oh and for anyone who doubts where Finch, Pryor and Malloy will end up on this one may want to stop by the Farewell Reception Honoring Paul Vallas for his outstanding contribution to Bridgeport Public Schools which will take place on Friday, January 10, 2014 in the Bridgeport Holiday Inns Lido Room. By the way, its a cash bar.

The guest speaker will be Mayor Bill Finch but it would be truly astonishing if Commissioner Pryor and Governor Malloy didnt stop bymaybe if for no other reason than to hand Vallas the sack of taxpayer funds he is demanding before he rides off into the western sunset.

The Connecticut Post has an updated (albeit partial) article on these developments at: http://blog.ctnews.com/education/2014/01/04/bridgeport-may-not-be-done-with-vallas-just-yet/

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