Tuesday, April 18, 2000

2 more on Warren MRDD board resign

Commissioner says rest must go too

BY Cindi Andrews
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        LEBANON — Two members of the Warren County mental retardation board resigned Monday, and a county commissioner said the county will begin trying to kick off the last two members today.

        The board of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities has come under attack from commissioners and the public who claim it didn't adequately monitorits former superintendent, who bought two houses for the agency last year at tens of thousands of dollars above market value.

        “The public perception is they were on the old board and they're part of the problem,” said Commissioner Larry Crisenbery.

        Board members also have been criticized for continuing to defend former Superintendent Charlotte Marinacci's actions.

        The commissioners appoint five of the seven board members and can remove them for cause after following a process that includes a public hearing. Commission ers had given members 30 days to decide whether to resign before they considered removing them.

        That deadline passed this weekend, Mr. Crisenbery said, and it's time for action.

        Lillian Bevins and Vice President Judy Koontz resigned from the board Mon day. The others who have quit are former President Darrell Hunt, Sonya Staffan and Dennis Blakeley.

        One of the two remaining board members said Monday she won't go without a fight.

        “I didn't do anything wrong. And if they get me off there, that's the only way they're going to get me off there,” Fayetta Alexander said. “I haven't been on the board even a year, and I really resent what they're doing.”

        The other board member, Kathy Morin, could not be reached for comment Monday.


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