Buffalo School Board votes to hire firm to file Paladino petition

Board Hires Lawyer, Trying To Remove Paladino

BUFFALO, N.Y. - The Buffalo School Board has voted to hire the law offices of Frank Miller, a Syracuse-based attorney, in order to file a petition to remove board member Carl Paladino because of his conduct.

Last week, the board gave Paladino 24 hours to resign, or else they would file a petition with New York State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia to remove him from office. Paladino has repeatedly said he's not resigning.

Paladino, a board member who is also the Chairman of Ellicott Development, recently made offensive comments about President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama in the local weekly publication Artvoice.

Board President Barbara Seals Nevergold said the board was seeking an attorney from outside the area.

"We felt it was important to have someone that did not have conflicts, or potential conflicts, in this area," Nevergold said. "Buffalo is a very close-knit community."

It was not immediately clear how much Miller's legal services would cost the district, since the school board would not release that information on Wednesday night. 

Paladino did not attend the meeting, nor did his ally, Larry Quinn. All other seven board members in attendance voted to approve the measure to hire the attorney, including at-large board member Patricia Pierce, who had voted against a measure last week to demand Paladino's resignation.

Pierce said she will accept the decision of the commissioner.

"This is a situation that an impartial person needs to look at, and that is part of the process. We have a process in place in this country, due process, that's what this man is entitled to and what we are entitled to," Pierce said.

Paladino would not provide a comment to 2 On Your Side. 


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