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Ansonia BOE plans to sue city hall over school budget

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ANSONIA -- Members of the Ansonia Board of Education are saying city hall doesn't have a right to take away $600,000 from its budget.

Attorneys for the Ansonia BOE sent a letter of intent to the City of Ansonia stating, "The board will file suit against the city if the city does not by May 15th, 2018, restore the full amount of the reduction to the Board's 2017-18 appropriation level."

In January, the city took back $600,000 it gave to the BOE claiming it gave them too much money.

Ansonia Mayor David Cassetti said they're allowed to take the money back from the BOE based on a previous agreement made between both parties. FOX61 asked for proof of this agreement and Cassetti seemed unsure of its whereabouts.

Now, the city has until Tuesday to give back the funds. Ansonia Superintendent Dr. Carol Merlone said the BOE will present its budget on Monday the 14th.

"Based on whatever happens that evening will determine whether it goes official Tuesday morning, said Dr. Merlone

"There's not going to be any deal. I mean, that ship has sailed. Let them go through with the lawsuit," said Cassetti.

Mayor Cassetti claims the city already tried to make a deal to resolve this issue.

FOX61 asked Cassetti the specifics of that deal.

Cassetti said he asked the BOE to use money from the federal school meal program funds. The BOE said under federal law, there is no circumstance that allows them to use federal USDA funds for anything other than school meal programs.

Nevertheless, the BOE said they will not turn away from the fight.

"We need to educate our kids and they need to be competitive in this world. They are the future. And I stand by that and I'll fight for our kids forever," said Dr. Merlone.

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