New Rochelle Board of Education President David Lacher was unable to gain board support for a second term as President in the wake of revelations by Talk of the Sound that he had run up thousands of dollars in debt to the District and so announced that Tuesday's meeting would be his last as President.
Lacher had lobbied board members for a second term on the grounds that having recruited incoming Schools Superintendent Dr. Brian Osborne to New Rochelle he ought to remain President to guide Osborne through his first year. His board colleagues rejected this argument setting the stage of Board Vice President Lianne Merchant to rise to the Presidency at next week's meeting.
Lacher ran up a five-figure debt to the school district over the past two years by failing to make timely payments for medical insurance he obtained through the District's Group Health Insurance program. Lacher was late paying his bills for all but one one of the twenty-one months he has had coverage through the District going back to August, 2012.
Under New York State law, elected School Board members are permitted to purchase medical insurance coverage in the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP) through their local school district's group health insurance plans but are required to pay 100% of the premium, in advance, at the start of each month.
Rather than pay his premiums on a timely basis, the District paid Lacher's premiums for him, using taxpayer dollars, and then sought reimbursement, according to records obtained by Talk of the Sound under a Freedom of Information request. Lacher never paid interest on what amounts to an unauthorized, interest-free revolving line of credit with the time value of the money subsidized by taxpayers.
All this as part of a general house cleaning in areas under Quinn's control as Assistant Superintendent for Business & Administration.