Chesapeake BOE appoints Lilly to post

Published 9:24 am Thursday, May 24, 2012



CHESAPEAKE — A former member of the Chesapeake Board of Education is back to help lead the district.

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At its Monday meeting, the board voted three to one to appoint Carl Lilly to replace Jerry Osborne. Osborne, who was elected in November 2009, resigned in April citing health reasons.

The board made its decision after receiving letters of interest from Lilly, Kenneth Ater, Alex Martin, Jeremy Miller and Doug Ridenour

Lilly had served on the school board from 1996 to 2004.

In 2008 he was appointed to the county’s board of elections. He had planned to run in the 2011 general election but had to withdraw because running for that office was a conflict with serving on the election board.

“I have stayed interested in what has been going on (in the district),” Lilly said. “There were two reasons I felt I would like to be back on the board.”

Those concerns are the finances of the district and what Lilly calls excessive changes in administrative personnel.

“We have had a real turnaround in administrators over the last couple of years,” he said. “I call it musical chairs. It can’t be good the way they have been moved. It is bad for the administrators.”

Lilly said he also wants to explore the district’s finances, especially focusing on the new athletic complex the district began work on this past fall.

“That is one of my concerns,” he said. “(Financing) wasn’t done through a bond levy. They switched the millage. That wasn’t real popular with the people. I have heard rumors there won’t be enough money to do what we want to do. We may have to go back to the people. It won’t be an easy sell since they didn’t get a vote.”

This past summer the board voted to move two mills of the district’s inside millage from operating expenses to permanent improvements to help fund a proposed $3 million football-soccer-track complex. A school district can levy inside millage without putting it on the ballot.

“I want to talk with the other board members who voted for me that we are on the same page,” Lilly said. “And I haven’t talked with Dr. Howard. I want to get some facts together on which way I would move about personnel and finance.”

Dr. Kim Oxley was the sole vote against Lilly’s appointment stating in an email she felt there were other candidates better suited for the post.

Voting in support were Jeanne Harmon, Jerry Frye and David Bennett.

“Basically he is a good man,” Harmon said. “He has some board experience. I am relatively new at this and so is Jerry Frye and I thought he would be a good board member.”

Lilly will have to run for the seat in the November 2013 election.