ABBEVILLE, La. (KLFY)- Vermilion Parish School Board members want the school superintendent out of the office.
They claim that while he’s under an investigation, he should not be allowed in the office. They want the Abbeville police chief to take action.
Last Thursday, the Vermilion Parish school board placed Superintendent Jerome Puyau on leave. He says, however, they can’t do that.
“The board does not have the authority to suspend the superintendent. It only has the authority to hire or fire for a cause,” Puyau said during Thursday’s meeting.
Puyau continues to show up to work. Now, board members are calling for the police department to remove him from the premises.
“We went to the Abbeville Police Department to request that they remove him from the school board property because these re the conditions that he was put on administrative leave. The city of Abbeville and the police jury has refused to uphold the law,” said Vermilion Parish School Board Vice President Kibbie Pillette
Pillette claims Puyau is breaking the law.
“Mr. Jerome is trespassing. And in that capacity they owe to the vermilion parish school board that this individual be removed,” he said.
But Abbeville Police Chief Billy Spearman says it’s not that simple. “We’re not sure because the title one. Because they already did this last year and a case law, or opinion came back, that the board cannot dismiss him from the property,” said Spearman. “So before I get myself or the city into something, I’m looking at every avenue and every angle.”
Spearman adds this is not about picking sides or not wanting to enforce the law. Rather, it’s about following it.
“We’re going to be right down the middle. We’re not going to take anybody’s side. And we’re going to do our job, but we’re going to do it right,” the chief said.