Two board trustees seeking contract information about the hiring of Superintendent Timothy Chargois have filed a motion for sanctions and a protective order in their lawsuit against the Beaumont Independent School District.
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.
Court records show that on May 8 Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court, dismissed the plaintiffs’ claim for injunctive relief, ruling that the request was moot.
On June 6 BISD filed an amended notice to take the depositions of the plaintiff trustees on June 18.
That same day, Neild and Neil filed their motion, asserting that the discovery sought by BISD constitutes harassment.
“The only remaining issue in this case is purely a question of law, i.e. whether at the time plaintiffs sues, the suit was frivolous,” the motion states. “The requested depositions would do nothing to further address this issue, it is for the court to decide, and therefore the requested depositions should not be allowed.”
The original 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, 2012, 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