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GASD school board reorganizes, seating three new members

The results of November’s municipal elections have replaced three members of the Gettysburg Area School District Board of Directors. Jeremy Davis, Ryan Morris, and Michelle Smyers are newly-elected members and Kenneth Hassinger was re-elected.  Each was elected to a 4-year term.

Prior board members Kathleen Adams Pratt and Sylvan Hershey retired from the board and incumbent Carrie Soliday was defeated at the polls.

During the reorganization meeting Hassinger was unanimously reelected as board president and Al Moyer was reelected as vice president.

Robert L. Mcquaid was reelected as district solicitor and Amy Beth Hodges was approved as Pennsylvania School Board Association Legislative Chairperson, both on unanimous votes.

The board said it will consider a legislative plan to help it move toward a balanced budget over 5-year period.

During the public comment period Gettysburg Times publisher Harry Hartman said newly-seated board member Ryan Morris owes $27,000 in back taxes from 2019 and 2020 and that he believed it was inappropriate for Morris to vote on financial matters relating to the district. Hartman said Morris was on a payment plan to repay the taxes but asked the board to consider what the district’s financial situation would be like if every taxpayer were on a payment plan. “I don’t believe you could turn the lights on tonight if that were the case; that’s not the way good taxpaying citizens do business and run their households,” he said.

Hartman also said there were pending lawsuits against Morris and speculated other issues would come to light that would force Morris to resign from the board.

Hassinger said there was a likelihood the next meeting, scheduled for Jan. 3, would be canceled and that the board would next meet on Jan. 18, 2022. The board, which is currently meeting in the Middle School auditorium, plans to move back to the district administration building after the first of the year. 

Featured image caption: Left to Right, Davis, Morris, and Smyers

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Charles Stangor is Gettysburg Connection's Publisher and Editor in Chief.

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  • Congratulations to all the elected members to this important position in being our eyes and ears to the process of education of the children of our community. As to Mr Hartman’s comment I find it sad that he felt he had to inject himself into the proceedings.

    • I find it sad that you find it sad that someone, while exercising his free speech rights, informed the public about something the public did not know and which was not disclosed to the public by the candidate. Thank goodness we still have respectable newspaper folk around!

  • Well, the character and efficiency of publicly-elected officials is relevant. This information should have come out before Morris was elected! There was very little available about most of the candidates – I tried to research them all…just some Facebook entries and a few very generalized “pat answers.”

  • Just a word of appreciation for GASD archiving school board meetings so community members who were attending other ones could catch up to speed. Thank you!

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