A familiar name pops up in J-E school fiasco

A familiar name surfaced in the Jordan-Elbridge School District fiasco. Dennis O'Hara, the lawyer representing three disciplined school administrators there, is the same attorney who was unceremoniously dismissed by the Liverpool school board in November 2008 in the aftermath of a critical state Comptroller's audit of the Liverpool district.

O'Hara's now representing David Zehner, William Hamilton and Anthony Scro.

Scro, the district treasurer, was fired Sept. 9. Zehner was suspended with pay as principal at Jordan-Elbridge High School on Sept. 21.

Hamilton, assistant superintendent for business and finance, was put on paid administrative leave in July after he questioned the billing practices of district lawyer Danny Mevec. Meanwhile, school board members confirmed that Mevec was romantically involved with J-E school board member Jeanne Pieklik.

But here's another incestuous innuendo - Mevec previously worked for Denny O'Hara's own law firm! Small world, eh?

O'Hara, who specializes in education law and finance, maintained that the actions against his three J-E clients were not approved at public school board meetings.

While their world crumbles around them, the J-E school board finally found the gumption to dismiss Danny Mevec as its attorney on Oct. 6.

Before O'Hara was let go in Liverpool two years ago, his O'Hara, O'Connell & Ciotoli law firm had charged LCSD $1,452,400 in fees from 2004-06. That was about $1 million more than what North Syracuse paid the partners during the same time frame.

My, how quickly those billable hours add up! J-E found out the hard way...

Puerile posts bite Price

Sheriff's candidate Joe Price, a Democrat, learned the high price of posting puerile opinions on a public Internet forum. He's now a man without a party.

The Post-Standard, the institution which runs the cyber-soap box, made a fool of Price with its front-page expos on Sept. 24. That afternoon the county Democratic Committee promptly disowned Price because of his racist and homophobic computer comments. Democratic Chairwoman Diane Dwire announced that her party was pulling all support - financial and otherwise - from the Price campaign. His name will still appear on the Democratic line on the Nov. 3 ballot.

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