Two trustees on the board of North Idaho College have sued the Idaho State Board of Education in an attempt to block the State Board of Education from filling trustee vacancies at the community college.
Tuesday’s lawsuit, filed by Todd Banducci and Gregory McKenzie in Kootenai County’s First Judicial District, represents the latest development in a turbulent year for the Coeur d’Alene-based community college.
In September, Banducci, McKenzie and former North Idaho College trustee Michael Barnes voted without warning or cause to fire former North Idaho College president Rick MacLennan, the Spokesman-Review and Idaho Education News reported. Weeks earlier, Banducci, McKenzie and Barnes had united to rescind a new mask mandate that MacLennan had implemented, the Inlander reported.
In January, Barnes resigned from North Idaho College’s board of trustees.
Then, on April 8, North Idaho College trustees Christie Wood and Ken Howard announced their resignation from the college’s board of trustees, effective May 3.
The resignations of Barnes, Wood and Howard would leave three of the five seats on the North Idaho College board of trustees vacant, and short of a majority quorum necessary to conduct business.
Idaho State Board of Education announced it would fill trustee vacancies
Meanwhile, the State Board of Education announced in an April 8 press release it would initiate a process to fill the vacant trustees seats until November’s next trustee election.
“Idaho Code provides that the State Board of Education shall fill vacancies if there are two or fewer trustees remaining on a community college board,” State Board of Education Executive Director Matt Freeman said in an April 8 written statement. “The State Board will soon release an announcement seeking applications from residents of each of the soon-to-be vacant community college trustee zones at North …