BOE Member-Elect Declines to Take Board Seat

Joanne Mancuso, who was elected to the Parsippany Board of Education in November, said she does not want to be sworn in.

Joanne Mancuso, who was elected to the Parsippany Board of Education Nov. 6, will not be taking the oath of office in January, according to a letter she sent to the district.

Interim Business Administrator Mark Resnick announced Mancuso’s decision during the board’s Thursday night meeting. Resnick did not say whether Mancuso listed any reasons for her decision.

Mancuso, who had previously served on the board, was one of three candidates—along with James Carifi and Dr. Frank Calabria, the current board president —to win seats on the board. Those three beat out Alison Cogan, Anthony DeIntinis and Frank Neglia, current board vice president.

Mancuso had previously said . Mancuso has no relation to Board Member Anthony Mancuso.

Former board member and frequent meeting attendee Robert Crawford said he was stunned to hear Mancuso had turned down the seat.

“Many of us went to the polls a short month ago and cast our votes believing it meant something,” Crawford said.

Crawford explained to the rest of the public, and board attorney Katherine Gilfillan agreed, that the traditional policy for filling a vacancy is that the public is advised of the opening and interested candidates submit their resumes. The board then interviews the candidates and selects the next member by majority vote.

Gilfillan clarified that this is the policy traditionally followed after a member has served on the board. In this instance, Mancuso has not been sworn in as a member. Therefore, not all of the policy facets directly apply to this situation.

Calabria said the first step is for the board to get through the swear-ins and reorganization processes during its Jan. 3 meeting. Then, he said, the board will try to stick to the policy for filling the vacancy, if Gilfillan agrees with the decision.

Cogan, who has lost in the past two school board elections, was present at the meeting and said she is interested in filling the vacant seat.

“I have attended over 54 meetings over the past few years,” Cogan said. “And I continue to want to serve on this board.”

Kevin Guhl December 21, 2012 at 12:10 PM
She didn't seem to campaign much or do interviews during the election. Seems like she applied to run and then lost interest or had something else come up that she had to deal with. I still have to wonder if ballot placement and voter complacency played a big role in the school board election, with the first three candidates listed winning.
Pete December 21, 2012 at 02:21 PM
I'd bet that apathy played a big role too. What percentage of eligible voter actually VOTED ?
Michael S Fenton December 21, 2012 at 03:05 PM
Frankly, none of the candidates campaigned much, if at all. In my almost 35+ years in Parsippany I've learned that it doesn't seem to make a difference who is on the board. I was asked once to finish out the term of a member who had been forced to resign. After two hours with "the committee" I realized what a mistake it would be to be consumed by the petty bickering and total disregard for the needs of students, teachers or voters. Apathy! You bet.
Scott Dean December 21, 2012 at 04:20 PM
Not sure if apathy applies here, I am a little concerned that Mr.Calabria is stating they will try to stick to the policy. Lord only knows what rabbit will pop out of the hat next ? I will await a secret e-mail to see.
clyde donovan December 21, 2012 at 04:56 PM
I hope Mr. Crawford or PATCH submits an OPRA request to get a copy of Joanne Mancuso's letter of resignation. The public needs to know why she says she can't serve. Here's what i think may have happened. This is my opinion/speculation based on the questionable way the BOE has operated in the past and how it tried to screw over Gov. Christie: Mancuso ran because Neglia and Cogan could never get eleted. She was a shill or decoy. Then the plan could have been for Mancuso to resign and the BOE selects one of their cronies, most likey Neglia, to fill the term. Neglia, or Cogan, gets the seat even though he, or she, could never have gotten elected.
Par4theCourse December 21, 2012 at 06:42 PM
Clyde, usually I think your posts are hysterically sarcastic or just plain delusional. However, in this case, I am in total agreement, I think you are spot-on.
clyde donovan December 21, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Remember "Par," if there is corruption on the BOE - and I'm not saying there is - then the BOE has to keep the co-conspirators as close and happy has possible.
Carol M. December 21, 2012 at 09:59 PM
Your theories may not be far off but you've got the wrong group. Mr Strumolo asked Mrs. Mancuso to run and with Mr Deintinis being the lowest vote getter of all, lets see anyone try to justify appointing him now. Lets see if the board really cares about the voice of the people? The people cast their votes and Mrs Cogan had the next highest votes and Mr Deintinis was the least liked candidate. Now's their chance to prove that they really do listen!
clyde donovan December 22, 2012 at 12:00 AM
It will be interesting to see what happens. In the end I doubt it will benefit the people of Parsippany. They should postpone until April the special school election concerning the ridiculous football field waste of money and include a special election for a replacement for Mancuso.
VietNam Vet December 22, 2012 at 03:23 AM
With this board you can't rule anything out. They may have all put her up to this just like the demoncraps would do, they must be taking lessons. What next in this town? This board is so corrupt.
VietNam Vet December 22, 2012 at 03:29 AM
Carol, again you want to come down on Mr. Strumolo, what have you got against this man. I don't think you would know corruption if it came and knocked on your door. The only one on that board I would trust IS Mr.Strumolo because the rest have all shown what they are all about. Get real will you!
VietNam Vet December 22, 2012 at 03:35 AM
Clyde I'm all for getting rid of Mancuso because is it wasn't for him trying to screw over the Gov. we wouldn't be stuck with the no talent speitz. We need to replace him real bad next year.
Kevin Brancato December 22, 2012 at 12:45 PM
Vet (aka Paul Brown) Mikes neighbor. (Still not sure if you are Mike or not.) How nice to hear from you again. You know as well as anyone that Mrs Mancuso was handpicked and talked int running by Mike so he could gain the fifth vote on this board. She was not interested and told him she would not campaign, which she did not. I think that once she got elected and Mike started talking about his plans, Joanne wisely said I don't need this and bailed out. You constantly throw out the word corruption, the closest this board comes to corruption is the kind of disruption being created by your buddy. Please crawl back into your hole and stop posting all this crap. By the way. In your last post the Mancuso you refer to is not Joanne. Just in case your confused.
Kevin Brancato December 22, 2012 at 12:47 PM
And Clyde never mentioned any of this stuff. Do you even read what you comment on??
Joanne Mancuso December 22, 2012 at 02:02 PM
So to all you speculators out there who wants the dirt, well here it is. No one, Not Mr. Strumolo, Dr. Calabria or anyone else asked me to run. It was my decision. I did not campaign for I was sick and in the hospital and out of work for the whole summer. When I won I was also surprised but stated I would do what I had to do for the children of Parsippany. I started to attended of the New Jersey School Boards meetings like required (just ask Mr. Carifi, Mrs Orthwien, or Mrs. Golderer who saw me there. I was all set to take my seat and do my elected job. In the start of December my husband and I were informed our lease was not going to be renewed and that we would have to move! After searching for 2 weeks to stay in town and not being able to come up with anything we can afford, we choose to leave town and do what we have to for our family. So that is it, in a nut shell. Speculate all you want, but stop blaming everyone else out there, they had nothing to do with my decisions, for I am an independent person. Thank you to all that had supported me, this was, has and will be a very stressful and emotional time for my family, as we have been here for a very long time. As for my resignation letter to the Board Secretary it stated Personal issues, but I must remember that nothing in Parsippany can be personal!!
Monica Sclafani December 22, 2012 at 04:05 PM
Joanne - sorry to hear this. I'm sure you would have brought your independent thinking to this board! Best of luck to you! Monica
Kevin Guhl December 22, 2012 at 04:31 PM
Sorry to hear about your recent difficulties, Joanne. And thanks for stopping by to quash the conspiracy theories. :)
Steve Reyes December 23, 2012 at 04:02 PM
Joanne, sorry to hear about your home situation and thanks for clearing up the reason for your not accepting the position. The only problem now is the town conspiracy bitches will have to find some other topic to post to each on this site other over the Christmas break. Have a merry Christmas.
George L. Blair December 23, 2012 at 06:58 PM
Well done Mrs. Mancuso.
George L. Blair December 23, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Nicely said Steve.


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