New Castle News

March 29, 2013

IU IV director on paid leave pending investigation

Debbie Wachter
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — The executive director of the Midwestern Intermediate Unit IV has been placed on paid administrative leave.

At its meeting Wednesday, the board placed Cecelia H. Yauger on leave, pending the outcome of an investigation into allegations regarding requests for information under the state’s Right-to-Know law. Karen Humphrey abstained because Yauger is her sister-in-law.

This week’s decision followed a special meeting last week when the board agreed to hire its solicitor, Tim McNickle of McNickle and Bonner of Grove City, to conduct the investigation.

The board adopted a resolution at the special meeting authorizing the firm to the formally investigate the allegations. It also agreed to hire Paul Lalley of the law firm Campbell, Durrant, Beatty, Palombo and Miller to act as the board’s independent legal counsel.

Board members Humphrey, Karen Houk and Lynn Foltz Thursday affirmed the action had been taken at a public meeting, but said they were advised against commenting further on the nature of the allegations against Yauger.

An attempt Thursday afternoon to reach McNickle was unsuccessful.

Humphrey said she does not know how long Yauger will be on paid administrative leave.

The board temporarily has placed Brenda Marino, the IU IV’s attorney and human resources director, in charge of operations until the matter is resolved.

Houk said Thursday afternoon the nature of the allegations were not discussed publicly at last week’s special meeting.

The resolution notes the board has not engaged in any fact-finding, and the solicitor is to investigate the allegations. If a notice of charges is issued, the board will be required to schedule a hearing and act as the hearing officers and make rulings on all proceedings and evidentiary matters, according to the resolution.

(Email: dwachter@ncnewsonline.com)