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'Secret $30K SUV' For Superintendent Sparks Controversy In Fair Lawn

Fair Lawn schools
Fair Lawn schools Photo Credit: Google Maps

A former Fair Lawn Board of Education member has filed an ethics complaint saying a "secret purchase" of a $30,000 SUV for the superintendent violated state regulations.

Current BOE officials, however, say it was all done by the books.

"I would never do anything illegal or unethical," BOE President Ronnie Barbulo told Daily Voice. "I, as President or do we as President/Vice President have the power to do this."

Superintendent Nick Norcia's contract included mileage reimbursement for his personal vehicle when it went into effect in March, said Lisa Yourman in her complaint, filed with the state's School Ethics Commission.

Then, Norcia was "secretly" given a brand new Ford Explorer, Yourman said.

“The vehicle compensation perk, hidden from public view, is a backdoor way to secretly take from the public while also avoiding compensation oversight by the county superintendent," the complaint reads

Yourman accuses Barbarulo and Vice President Elyss Frenkel of allowing the vehicle to be purchased before BOE members approved the funds.

BOE members were presented with a $29,797.70 bill for the SUV on April 30 -- a month after the car had been purchased.

“It had been used for over a month before the Board approved it," Yourman said. "This created a situation where the other board members were forced to approve it in the monthly bill ledger."

"Why is this against the 2 people that are running for re-election and not the entire board?" Barbulo said in an email to Daily Voice.

Frenkel told that none of the process was done in secret, and that the entire BOE voted on the SUV purchase, which was approved by the county.

Barbulo said the BOE will be releasing the minutes of the closed session in which the purchase of the vehicle was discussed and voted on the purchase of the car.

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