November 30, 2011
GIVEN the outrage that is sure to greet the news that ousted schools chief Arlene Ackerman has filed for unemployment, we're almost afraid to say this, but here it is: We can't help admiring her . . . just a little. The same way we admire the guy who kills his parents and then begs the court for leniency based on the fact that he's now an orphan. Since exiting her job in August, Ackerman has confounded her critics and enemies - first by negotiating a buyout worth nearly $1 million after just three years on the job, plus another $86,000 in unused vacation days.
November 10, 2011 |
OKLAHOMA PAID former basketball coach Jeff Capel $1.75 million in addition to his monthly salary after firing him following back-to-back losing seasons. According to documents released yesterday to the Associated Press in response to an open records request, Oklahoma continued to pay Capel his monthly salary through the end of June, under the terms of his contract. In addition to that, the documents show that Capel also received $500,000 extra at the end of May and a $1.25 million lump sum at the end of June.
October 31, 2011 |
THE YANKEES have made a contract offer to ace CC Sabathia, who has until today to decide whether to opt out of the 4 years and $92 million remaining on his current deal. The offer was made over the weekend, a source told the Associated Press yesterday. Sabathia agreed to a 7-year, $161 million, before the 2009 season and has gone 59-23 with a 3.18 ERA during the regular season for New York. If he opts out, the 31-year-old lefthander would become the top pitcher on the free-agent market.
October 14, 2011 |
TRENTON - Owners of more than 1,000 flood-prone homes could receive buyouts from New Jersey towns under a proposal that received unanimous support after its first legislative hearing Thursday. The legislation permits municipalities to establish so-called Blue Acres programs to complement the state's Green Acres program that enables towns to acquire land for parks or conservation, said Sen. Bob Gordon, a Democrat whose Bergen County district was hit hard by flooding from Hurricane Irene and other summer storms.
September 20, 2011 |
Signaling another major change in Philadelphia School District leadership even while it is about to search for a new superintendent, two members of the School Reform Commission resigned Monday, one of them its chairman. Both Chairman Robert L. Archie Jr. and Johnny Irizarry were appointees of Mayor Nutter, who is charged with replacing them. Their resignations are immediate and raise the question of whether the commission will even be able to meet Wednesday as scheduled.
September 19, 2011
TO PARAPHRASE myriad deejays, the hits just keep on coming. We're not talking about yet another playing of "Stairway to Heaven," or even "Seasons in the Sun," however annoying you might find that prospect. For people who work for newspapers, the last 15 years or so have been an unrelieved and seemingly unending chain of disasters. I just finished a column for a North Dakota paper about the sudden early retirement of the editor of the Bismarck Tribune, who cited unrelenting personal attacks from bloggers and Internet commenters as his reason.
September 8, 2011 |
THE ARLENE Ackerman saga came to its official conclusion yesterday as the district cut her a $905,000 buyout check, but not before one more twist of the screw into taxpayers. You're now on the hook for the whole thing. The school district shelled out the total cost of the agreement after public pressure to reveal the identities of anonymous donors who had pledged $405,000 led "almost all" to pull out, according to a statement from the School Reform Commission. Officials delivered the shocking news on the last day to pay Ackerman under the agreement.
September 8, 2011 |
The effort to raise $405,000 in private donations to help buy out former Superintendent Arlene C. Ackerman's contract has unraveled, leaving the Philadelphia School District on the hook for nearly $1 million. "The public concerns about the use of anonymous private donations led almost all donors to withdraw their pledges," the School Reform Commission said in a statement released Wednesday night. Ackerman got a buyout of $905,000 - $405,000 of which was to come from donations to a nonprofit with ties to the district.
September 2, 2011 |
The Philadelphia School District's legal office is reviewing critical public comments that former Superintendent Arlene C. Ackerman made last week about a top district administrator to see whether they violate her $905,000 separation agreement. Just three days after the announcement of the acrimonious end to her superintendency, Ackerman last Thursday ripped chief financial officer Michael Masch on WURD-AM (900) in talking about the district's $600-million-plus budget hole. "People are blaming it on me," she said.