Park settlement: 6 months full pay
Former Carbon School District Superintendent George Park will receive his full compensation from Jan. 1 through June 30 this year on regular paydays, and will work for the district as a consultant for that length of time.
Those two items were part of the stipulations listed in the district's settlement with Park. The Sun Advocate was able to obtain a copy of the document Wednesday morning..
In December the Carbon School Board announced that they had reached a settlement with Superintendent Park concerning his resignation from the school district. At the time neither board members nor administration would comment on the settlement, saying that a document that would explain the situation would be forthcoming in the coming weeks.
The resignation, as the board stated at their special meeting on Dec. 17, was tendered as of Dec. 31. Park's resignation followed four months of trial and tribulation for both himself and the district concerning charges brought against him by the Garfield County Attorney's Office concerning actions he supposedly took during his time as superintendent at the Garfield County School District. Park was arrested by Garfield authorities in August near the Carbon School District Office over the charges. Until November, Park, who had only been in place as Carbon's superintendent since May, was in limbo about the charges brought against him. The Washington County Attorney's Office, to which the case had been turned over, dismissed the charges without prejudice under the conditions he testify in a case about another former school district official whom charges were also brought against.
At that point to many, it appeared that Park was free and clear and would be returning to work at Carbon. By that time he had also been suspended without pay since Oct. 1 and he was anxious to return to work.
But then came up the issue of ethical behavior and how the Utah State Board of Education viewed the situation that had transpired in Garfield. At that point the state board's Utah Professional Practice Advisory Commission investigating Park's actions had still not finished their investigation. By the time of the resignation announcement in December, Jean Hill, the lead investigator for the state said they would not be making any recommendations on the case until January when their advisory board could meet. What their findings are have still not been released according to her office when it was contacted on Wednesday.
Hill said that Park's resignation and subsequent settlement with the school district had not rendered the investigation moot. "The investigation is continuing and I expect to have a recommendation at the next UPPAC meeting on January 11," she said.
The agreement that Park and the district signed concerning his severance from the district includes the following conditions:
*Park resigned as of Dec. 31, 2010 and he remained on leave without pay until that date. Park will resume his normal pay rate with the district as of Jan. 1, 2011 and that will continue with regular pay dates until June 30, at which time he will be removed from the payroll. During that time he will be a consultant to the district, with his only compensation being the pay rate to which he has agreed during the first six months of 2011. The agreement does not point out how much that compensation is and the Utahright.com public employee salary site does not list Park as an employee of the district. However, the prior superintendent was making a salary of $106,407 per year based on the site's information;
*The district will expect Park to be available as a consultant "at reasonable times and places to provide information and services to the district as requested by the board president or the district superintendent;
*If Park moves out of the county the district will be responsible for any travel expense he may incur in acting as a consultant for the district. The district has also agreed that if he does take another position any consulting work will be scheduled in accordance as to not interfere with his new position. He must give the district 15 days notice if he does accept other employment;
*The district has also agreed to pay $1,500 of his attorney fees in conjunction with the agreement;
*The district will provide medical and dental converage to Mrs. Park until Dec. 31, 2011, unless either Park or she accepts new employment. Park will pay the same amount as other 12 month contract administrators for this coverage;
*Park must return a laptop computer that he used as superintendent to the district or pay $800 for it. All information on the computer must be turned over to the district. Any other files or materials he has of the district's must also be turned over.
The agreement, except what is required by law, is confidential. Consequently, board members and members of the administration of the school district said at the December meeting they would not comment on the agreement and let what was released speak for itself.