Houston County legislators hope to pass a bill this year to make sure local school board member Marianne Melnick can stay on the board even though her son is a local middle school principal.
Melnick has been a Houston County school board member since 2006, and she worked for more than 30 years in the Houston school system. Her son, Jan Melnick, became the principal at Northside Middle School last year. Also last year, the Georgia General Assembly passed a law preventing people from sitting on local school boards if a member of their immediate family is an administrator in the system.
There was a grandfather clause for sitting members, but since Marianne Melnick faces re-election in 2010, the grandfather clause would run out for her. Legislation proposed by state Reps. Larry O’Neal, Willie Talton and Tony Sellier, all Republicans representing portions of Houston County, would extend that grandfather clause.
Under their proposal, the nepotism ban wouldn’t apply to board members in office prior to June 30, 2010. That would allow Melnick and other board members in similar situations in Georgia to keep their positions, provided voters re-elect them.The change must be voted on by the full Georgia General Assembly before taking effect.—