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Broward School Board Continues Lawyer Fiasco

The Broward County School Board has a bad case of emeritus.

You might think that after the stink caused by the Broward County School Board's plan to give outgoing Ed Marko a $266,000 salary to serve as general counsel emeritus (for the unwashed that's pronounced  ih-MEH-ri-tus, not really like a disease) after he leaves his position, the board members might just throw that idea out the window.

Yeah, you'd be wrong. Today -- moments ago, in fact -- the board voted 5-2 to approve the position for Marko, though the salary is still up in the air. That'll be hashed out later.  

They pushed the controversial item through, mind you, despite the fact that four new board members will be seated at the next meeting and should probably have their say on this controversial issue. And the new members will have a say later; it'll be a decent litmus test for some of them.

Leading the charge for the Marko gift were a couple of the usual suspects, Maureen Dinnen and the outgoing Bob Parks. Voting against it, to their credit, was Robin Bartleman (I'm starting to like her) and outgoing Phyllis Hope.

Not present, conveniently, was board Chair Jennifer Gottlieb because of a -- wait for it -- doctor's appointment. Gosh, JenJen, a lot of times you only have to be at work one day a week. Did you have schedule it today? 

The vote on Marko's position shows just how entrenched these board members are. Hell, the idiotic move to give Marko the emeritus position and all that money was one of the factors that drove the attorney they chose to replace him, James Stokes, to throw his hands up and quit before he even started.

But hey, the election was last week -- who cares what the voters think now?

The other "yea" votes, by the way, were from Ann Murray, Ben Williams, and Kevin Tynan.  

[ALERT: It looks like the blog comments are FINALLY fixed!] 

-- This can't be real. Inside, see who they are reporting has been named the newly elected Congressman-to-be Allen West's chief of staff.

It's Joyce Kaufman, the rabidly right-wing xenophobic radio-show host.

What is our country coming to?

Oh, wait a second, Allen West is rabidly right-wing and xenophobic too, so this move actually makes sense.

Remember when Kaufman led a protest against Pompano Beach allowing a peaceful imam from leading a prayer for the city? She called Islam "an ideology that conflicts with our Judeo-Christian values and our principles." Apparently she joins Christine O'Donnell in forgetting about the First Amendment. It was one of the uglier moments of the year.

(But then again the whole practice of saying prayers at City Hall meetings is a little off-base too).

After I criticized Kaufman, one of her people got hold of me and asked if I wanted to do an on-air interview. Then they backed out of it for some reason. Chicken hawks.

Here's a picture of Kaufman and West in full regalia. How weird is this gonna be?

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Journalist Bob Norman has been raking the muck of South Florida for the past 25 years. His work has led to criminal cases against corrupt politicians, the ouster of bad judges from the bench, and has garnered dozens of state, regional, and national awards.
Contact: Bob Norman

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