USD 378 Riley County School Board Pays Ness County Sheriff $1,800 Bill

By Ryan Duey

The USD 378 Riley County Board of Education recently settled a bill for an investigation into its members despite initially voting against it. The $1,824 payment was approved with a 4-1 vote, with Sara Wahlmeier-Cox, a new member, opposing it.

The investigation, conducted by Ness County Sheriff Brandon Mitchell, centered on potential violations of the Kansas Open Meetings Act by board members. Board president Samantha Brown independently hired Mitchell.

Additionally, the board appointed Stephanie Swiercinsky and Kevin Kenny to fill vacant seats left open by Ricketts and Mead, who both resigned on March 4th.

Notably, the board negotiated a separation agreement with former Superintendent Cliff Williams, offering a salary, benefits, and KPERS contributions through the end of the year in exchange for his resignation. The agreement also included provisions for accrued vacation and personal leave payouts, along with a lump sum for health insurance benefits.

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