judges-gavel

By Ryan Hagen, The Sun
Posted: 01/05/14, 5:24 PM PST |

SAN BERNARDINO >> A Superior Court judge has ordered a lightning rod member of the county board of education out of the seat he’s held since 2006, saying Gil Navarro became ineligible for the school board when he was elected in November 2012 to the board of the San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District.

But Navarro, who has maintained since officials first tried to remove him on that basis that it was a politically motivated attack, said he intended to take his seat when the school board meets on Monday.

“I don’t intend to go voluntarily,” he said. “They might have to physically remove me.”

Navarro also said he will meet with an attorney to discuss possibilities for appeal as well as his opinion that the county should have paid for his defense, since it was his county position that was being attacked.

Court documents show the county’s attorney and Navarro both were notified Dec. 27 of the decision by San Bernardino Superior Court Judge Michael A Sachs, although the decision was made and became effective Dec. 4. Monday is the first county school board meeting since Dec. 2.

The agenda for that meeting was amended Friday to include a decision on how to fill Navarro’s seat — by special election or an appointment by the four remaining board members — with a proposal to appoint someone in February after holding public interviews.

Board President Laura La Mancha said her only concern related to Navarro’s ouster was that the agenda had been modified to add a decision on his seat relatively late, just before 1 p.m. Friday.

She said she didn’t feel there was any political motive behind the decision or pressure to vote a certain way.

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