Del Galdo: Giving Illinois School Districts Extra Time to Fill Board Vacancies Good Idea

June 24, 2019

By David Ormsby, Chicago Tribune. View the original article here.

Berwyn, IL - Legislation sitting on Governor JB Pritzker's desk, which would give local Illinois school boards an extra two-weeks - from 45 days to 60 days - to fill unexpected board vacancies, would benefit the board member replacement process, according to a long-time suburban Cook County school board attorney.

"School Boards need more time than the current 45-day limit allows to adequately recruit, interview, and appoint a qualified member because a board-driven appointment help ensures a collegial working relationship among board members," said local government attorney Michael Del Galdo, managing partner of the Berwyn-based Del Galdo Law Group, LLC., who serves as general counsel for multiple south and west suburban Cook County school districts. "Otherwise, the regional school superintendent fills the vacancy."

The legislation, House Bill 2802 sponsored by State Rep. Chris Welch (D-Hillside), which was approved unanimously by both legislative chambers, was backed by both the Illinois Association of Region School Superintendents and the Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance, who championed the measure.

Individuals appointed to fill a vacancy serve the remainder of the unexpired term until the next regular school election.

"I would urge the governor to sign Rep. Welch's legislation," Del Galdo said. "This is a good government reform."

Pritzker has 90-days to decide whether to sign or veto the bill.