South Kitsap School District board member Rosapepe resigns

South Kitsap School District’s board of directors has an immediate opening.That is because District 5 representative Jay Rosapepe tendered his resignation at the June 1 school-board meeting.

Rosapepe, 57, said he faces a scenario that might be viewed as a “conflict,” but declined to elaborate. He said taking a leave of absence, which he considered, is not feasible from a legal standpoint.

District 5, which spans Sidney, McCormick Woods, Burley and Olalla, has been represented by Rosapepe since November 2007.

Rosapepe, who is the operations manager for Mason Transit, was the school board’s vice president and Washington Interscholastic Activities Association representative.

He becomes the first school-board member to resign since Chuck Mayhew in February 2008. Naomi Polen was appointed to that District 3 position, which now is held by Chris Lemke, two months later.

State regulations require the school board to appoint a replacement within 90 days of a departure. The district is taking applications for the position through July 1. Rosapepe’s seat also was up for election this year, and school board president Kathryn Simpson said “it might be prudent and responsible” to appoint a candidate for the position into the vacancy, particularly if only one person is running.

Rosapepe said the decision to leave was difficult. He said he was happy with a number of developments during his tenure on the school board, including the appointment of Dave LaRose as superintendent in June 2008, the passage of the maintenance and operations levy in February 2009 and its move toward Policy Governance management last year.

“It was tough because I thought we had a lot of good things going in the district,” Rosapepe said. “The board is very cohesive working together. The district doesn’t have a lot of issues right now.”

Simpson said her opinion on subjects often were different from Rosapepe’s, but she respected his viewpoint.

“I think we’re losing a person who has the ability to see many different perspectives,” she said. “I always have admired that in Jay. I think it’s a tremendous loss for the board.”

• According to the Kitsap County Elections website, Keith Garton has filed for re-election to his District 4 seat, which serves Manchester, Colby, Long Lake and Waterman areas. Garton was appointed to his position in June 1998 and first was elected in November 1999. J. Adele Macomber LaCombe has filed for the District 5 post.


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