Dr. Julian Crocker returns as superintendent of the Paso Robles school district. He says it’s great to be back. His priorities:
First – Verify a financial plan to stop the hemorrhaging at the school district, and rebuild a reserve fund.
During Chris Williams’ administration, the district nearly exhausted the 7.5 million dollar reserve fund. During public testimony four citizens spoke out against the settlement giving Williams more than 110 thousand dollars when he resigned for the district. Berkely Baker asked those members who voted for that settlement- Joel Peterson, Tim Gearhart and Joan Summers… “how do you expect us to trust you moving forward?”
Two citizens asked for full disclosure of the 4-A Foundation, which Chris Williams started at the school. They cited the total lack of transparency, and their concern that four of the people on the 4-A board are Chris Williams, his friend Rich Clayton, and former trustees Field Gibson and Matt Mclish.
At last night’s meeting several people shared privately the similarities between the behavior of former superintendent Chris Williams and his associates, and the behavior of the Parlier school district superintendent, who was arrested last week for embezzlement and for giving favors to his friends and family members of the trustees. That superintendent had a “Sunshine Fund” which he used as a slush fund for himself and his supporters. He was investigated by the Fresno county grand jury back in 2015. They turned findings over to the district attorney’s office, which led to the criminal investigation and indictment.
Meanwhile in San Luis Obispo, the county grand jury continues its investigation into alleged improprieties by former superintendent Chris Williams, his administrators and the previous board of trustees.