Superintendent Michael Jacobs, 45, was on paid leave from $77,000-a-year job.

Last updated: April 18. 2013 12:01AM - 7318 Views
By - jlynott@timesleader.com - (570) 991-6120

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HANOVER TWP. — A superintendent under investigation and on paid leave since last month from his nearly $77,000-a-year job was terminated after a closed-door meeting by the Wyoming Valley Sanitary Authority board.

The case of Michael Jacobs, 45, of Kingston, was referred to the Luzerne County District Attorney, said James Tomaine, acting executive director of the WVSA.

District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis confirmed that her office is investigating.

Tomaine said it was a consensus vote for termination after the board met in executive session Tuesday for more than an hour.

Jacobs, who was paid $76,969 annually as a superintendent, was put on paid administrative live on March 28 while an in-house investigation was conducted, Tomaine said.

“He had obviously done things he shouldn’t have,” Tomaine said, without going into detail of the personnel matter.

“It is an ongoing investigation,” he said, adding the board continues “talking to employees as part of a study.”

Jacobs could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

No decision has been made on replacing Jacobs, who also is a Kingston councilman up for reelection as a Republican candidate in the May 21 primary.

Information that led to the firing came up during interviews with employees conducted in an internal investigation begun before the retirement last August of Fred DeSanto from the executive director’s job, Tomaine said.

Jacobs’ case is not related to that of DeSanto, Tomaine said.

DeSanto’s case also was referred to the district attorney. DeSanto allegedly used WVSA staff to do work on his Pittston Township home and for the District 16 Little League for which he was a district director.

He had been executive director since 1998. He exited abruptly on Aug. 27 and had been scheduled to be interviewed by the WVSA board about the allegations. He held other positions in WVSA’s administration for 18 years.

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