SVSU, BVSU to end biz contract

BENNINGTON -- Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union Chief Financial Officer Richard Pembroke announced Wednesday that the SVSU will no longer supply the Battenkill Valley Supervisory Union with business services after June 30, 2014.

According to a release distributed by Pembroke, the BVSU has contracted the SVSU for business services since July 1, 2012.

Will complete current contract

"Both districts have spent considerable time instituting an effective financial system for the BVSU, Arlington, and Sandgate districts and have worked closely to prepare for the completion of much needed school audits," Pembroke wrote, explaining that the decision came after both supervisory unions "looked ahead to the many commitments they will have in coming years."

Pembroke noted that both districts have agreed to fulfill the current contract and the SVSU will continue to work with the BVSU throughout the rest of the school year.

This announcement comes less than a week after it was made public that the BVSU board voted not to extend the contract of current superintendent Karen Gallese through the 2014-2015 school year.

When contacted for comment Wednesday afternoon, Gallese insisted that the ending of the business services contract was not in any way related to the ending of her own contract, explaining that the non-renewal of the contract was discussed about a month and a half ago.

In Pembroke's release, Gallese was quoted as saying she "could not have moved forward in her position without the support and hard work of the SVSU business staff."

"When I came on board, I had no business office in place," Gallese said. "They have been so wonderful. They've never stopped helping me."

According to Pembroke, the SVSU will assist the BVSU in transitioning to an in-house business department beginning July 1, 2014.

The BVSU board and Gallese are also set to budget and advertise BVSU business office positions in the coming months.

Contact Elizabeth A. Conkey at or follow her on Twitter @bethconkey.


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