Former Board of Education chair Herman Guerrero stormed out of a BOE meeting Friday morning on Capitol Hill after a vote to implement new policies on the sharing of sick leaves failed to garner the entire board’s support.
Board members all voted against creating a “sick leave bank” to allow for the sharing of sick leaves for Public School System employees.
The BOE meeting, which member Janice Tenorio chairs for the meantime since chair Marylou Ada is on leave, was put on recess until some time next week. Tenorio notes that she is looking at Oct. 3 to reconvene the BOE meeting since Guerrero’s walkout left the board with one less the minimum of four members to establish a quorum.
BOE member Florine Hofschneider, representing Tinian, together with Rota representative Herman Atalig and Tenorio, voted against the leave bank.
In an interview, Tenorio noted that the body was discussing the sick leave bank prior to Guerrero storming off.
“…We needed further discussion on it. We could not make the decision right then and there because we needed to further discuss it. After that, he just [stood] up and left,” Tenorio said, referring to Guerrero.
“As soon as board member Guerrero walked out of the meeting, we could no longer continue,” she said. “He did not state his reason as to why he walked out but it was obvious—he did not agree with [the vote].”
Guerrero declined to comment on the meeting when Saipan Tribune reached out to him over the weekend.
Hofschneider noted Friday that the discussion on the sick leave bank “didn’t really take off” and that the board entertained a motion on the sick leave bank. She further noted that she voted against having the policy implemented just yet as she wishes to know how it would affect PSS as a whole.
Hofschneider had several unanswered questions—“How much is this going to cost us? What does it mean for the organization? How many people are in the same boat?”—that prompted her to vote against the policy “as presented.”
“At this point in time, we voted no as presented… We need the questions answered,” she said.