Halifax County School Board Chairman Joe Gasperini has resigned from the school board.
He also publicly announced his decision to remove his name from the November ballot in the upcoming election during the board’s monthly meeting Monday evening.
The school board accepted his resignation in a 6 to 2 vote with ED-8 trustee Walter Potts and ED-5 trustee Freddie Edmunds voting no.
In reading his resignation letter near the conclusion of the meeting, Gasperini said, “I had higher hopes for the county than it had for itself. The dream of a new high school could have changed the direction of this county. Instead, we have a group of individuals who want to make a vague proclamation as to what the county needs when it has been obvious all along. I wish only the best for the students and staff of the Halifax County School System.”
The former chairman has been an advocate for building a new high school since talks of rebuilding or renovating the secondary school began, and he served on the facilities committee.
Last week, Halifax County Board of Supervisors approved a resolution authorizing Halifax County to levy a general retail sales tax to fund capital renovation or construction of schools in the county.
The referendum authorizes Halifax County to levy a general retail sales tax not to exceed 1% to provide revenue solely for capital projects for construction or renovation of schools in Halifax County.
Following the school board meeting, the chairman said he feels the public is not being included in the decision-making process.
“They’re not letting the public make a decision…the public should know what they’re voting on,” said Gasperini, who added he hopes the referendum passes, and he hopes a new high school is built.
Prior to Monday’s meeting, Gasperini said he had told one school board member and Dr. Mark Lineburg, superintendent, of his decision to step down.
“I don’t agree with his reason for resigning,” said Potts explaining why he voted no.
He said Gasperini should have finished out his term.
The former chairman has been certified to have his name placed on the Nov. 5 ballot for the ED-4 seat on the Halifax County School Board. He faces opposition from challenger Jay Camp, the former county school finance director.
According to Heather Harding, county registrar, The Virginia Department of Election requires Gasperini to sign a card withdrawing as a candidate from the Nov. 5 election in order to remove his name from the ballot.
“If he does so in a timely fashion, his name will not be printed on the ballot, because the ballots have not been printed yet,” Harding said.
Lineburg said the school board plans to leave the ED-4 seat vacant until the Nov. 5 election is held.