Bibb BOE Member Denies Wrongdoing After Audit

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Updated: Wed, 05 Mar 2014 10:40:22 EST

One week after a Bibb Board of Education audit showed former superintendent Romain Dallemand spent nearly $52 million dollars with "reckless disregard" for board policy and rules, Board Member Tom Hudson is defending his actions in approving the purchases after the fact.

"I resent the fact that people call it rubber stamping, we went through the parliamentary procedures, we made decisions based on the information given to us," Hudson said.

The audit, released last week, shows Hudson and other board members voted to rubber stamp many purchases made by Dallemand after a contract was written or after a no-bid purchase was made.

Of the five members who seemingly supported Dallemand's behavior, only three still sit on the board: Ella Carter, Wanda West and Hudson.

Carter denied a request for comment, and West left the room before WGXA was able to request an interview.

Hudson deflected many questions asked of him saying recent criticism of certain board members are only political stunts.

"During this election cycle the stage has already been set, there's going to be certain people that are going to be targeted, they're going to try to do character assassination," Hudson said.

Staff members spoke out about Dallemand's tenure during a press conference Monday saying they were hurt and confused when board members ultimately decided to buy out Dallemand's contract, giving him what many would call a golden parachute severance package.

"It's not a parachute, it was a, both sides had legal advice based on the compromise between the legal, the board made the final decision as to what the final settlement would be based on the proposals that were presented to the board," Hudson said.

Hudson refused to say whether he has kept in contact with Dallemand, but he did say the audit and possible criminal investigation against Dallemand may hurt the school systems chances of finding a quality permanent replacement.

"I consider (Dallemand) as a man that came to this district to try to do a good job, unfortunately he was criticized and scrutinized from the very beginning, and it's going to make it very difficult for us to bring someone else into this district based on all this scrutiny that our past two superintendents have gone through," Hudson said.

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