OSWEGO – Aimee Callen won re-election to president of the Oswego City School District Board of Education on Tuesday by a 4-3 vote. Brandon Lagoe was named vice president by the same margin.
Prior to the start of the regular session, a former board member continued his fight to have an “illegal” member removed from the board.
At his final meeting last month, Tom DeCastro claimed that (then-vice president of the board) James Bell is serving on the board illegally.
DeCastro said Bell should resign; and so should Callen, due to her complicity in the matter.
Bell is the Oswego city director of code enforcement, DeCastro alleges, and holding an office other than police officer or firefighter while serving on the school board is against district policy.
“We have someone in violation of board policy and state law. The members of the board know this. And, it should be addressed,” DeCastro said Tuesday night. “It should have been addressed at the end of March when it was brought to everyone’s attention.”
Bell and other city officials deny that Bell is holding such an office.
Bell has said that he’s a “permit coordinator” for Oswego’s Zoning Department.
However, if the issue isn’t addressed by the school board, DeCastro said, “that’s complicity. And we know the city has done everything they can to cover this up. Eventually, if nothing is done, we’re going to have to go to the Commissioner of Education and, possibly, even the Attorney General.”
Addressing Bell, he added, “I hope you’re considering resigning, as you should.”
Callen told DeCastro it should have been brought up in executive session, but he made it a public matter.
She added that she has been in contact with a lawyer for advice.
“And, as of this moment, right now, there is nothing at this moment to make Jim step down,” she said. “Thank you for your time but we’ve taken care of the matter.”
“We’ll see,” DeCastro replied.
“Uh-huh, we will,” Callen said.