David Yates Apr. 22, 2013, 3:20pm

A plea to the jurisdiction hearing has been slated for Thursday, April 25, in a suit against the Beaumont Independent School District, which seeks contract information regarding the hiring of Superintendent Timothy Chargois.

As previously reported, trustees Tom Neild and Mike Neil filed a petition for an injunction against BISD and Beaumont attorney Tanner Hunt of Wells, Peyton, Greenberg & Hunt on May 16, 2012, in Jefferson County District Court, seeking contract information regarding the hiring of Chargois.

Previously, on Aug. 22, Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court, granted a motion for continuance, saying during the hearing that the parties had conferred and it was in their best interest to continue the case.

Now that the case has resumed, BISD’s plea to the jurisdiction, filed Aug. 20, will be heard.

The plea argues that the plaintiffs have properly failed to plead facts conferring jurisdiction.

“Their lack of standing and failure to state a cause of action against BISD dictate that the case … should be dismissed.”

In its motion for continuance, BISD stated that its plea to the jurisdiction had not yet been scheduled to be heard prior to any other motions on file.

The plaintiffs are also seeking summary judgment, court records show.

The petition alleges Hunt, who was retained by BISD to handle negotiations with Chargois, violated the trustees’ rights by not providing them with documents concerning Chargois’ employment contract.

On July 24 a Rule 11 agreement letter was filed in the case, stating the plaintiffs agree to nonsuit Hunt if he consents to withdraw any claims for fees and costs, court records show.

The order confirming non-suit was entered on April 16.

During the negotiations, the board took the stance that any salary increase would be the board’s decision and not part of the contract, due to the “wide-spread public dissatisfaction” with BISD Superintendent Carrol Thomas’ contract, which “resulted in automatic salary increases and the largest salary of any superintendent in the state of Texas,” the suit states.

Channel 6 News broke a story that the May 1 agreement executed between Chargois and the district contained a provision for automatic salary increases.

Beaumont attorney Michael Getz represents the plaintiffs.

Germer Gertz attorney Larry Simmons of Beaumont represents Hunt.

The district is represented by Beaumont attorney David Bernsen.

Case No. D192-449

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