Former Hanover Area business manager seeking severance package

By Mark Guydish - [email protected] | August 10th, 2017 7:32 pm

HANOVER TWP. — Through a letter from an attorney, former Hanover Area Business Manager Tom Cipriano has asked for an employee severance package previously denied by the school board, Solicitor Jack Dean said Thursday.

Dean said he hasn’t had time to respond to the letter, but it was unlikely the board would agree, primarily because Cipriano’s contract was set to expire in September and he had been notified it would not be renewed.

The dispute centers on a Voluntary Employee Separation Program (VESP) the school board set up earlier this year, hoping to entice some senior teachers into retiring so the district could save money.

The board voted in March to notify Cipriano of intent not to renew, as required by his contract. The board also voted to have the administration draw up a one-time VESP offer. Both Cipriano and then-Superintendent Andrew Kuhl expressed interest in the program, but when the board voted in June on approving who could participate, the two administrators were not included. The board did approve three teachers for the VESP program.

According to published reports, Cipriano landed a new job as assistant business manager at the Schuylkill Intermediate Unit. The Unit’s board of directors voted to hire him during a June 5 meeting, effective July 19.

Separately, the board authorized Dean to negotiate a deal with Kuhl, getting him to leave two years before his contract expires. That deal was finalized July 26, giving Kuhl $18,500 for unused sick days and vacation, and covering his health insurance until he turns 65.

Dean reiterated the board’s stance when it declined to include Cipriano in the VESP: Cipriano was a contracted employee who had already been told his contract would not be renewed.

The VESP was designed for employees who had no contractual time limit to their employment, such as teachers, Dean said, and it made little sense to give it to anyone already near the end of a contracted term.

By Mark Guydish

[email protected]

Reach Mark Guydish at 570-991-6112 or on Twitter @TLMarkGuydish