Invoice still a point of dispute

Published 11:01 am Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Selma City School Board once again discussed the issue of how it was going to pay for services rendered last year by STI Administrative Services Thursday. The bill comes with a $55,000 price tag and leaves many members confused as to where the invoice is coming from.

“What we should say is that, we don’t want to pay this (and) if you weren’t going to invoice us than don’t,” said board attorney Katy Campbell.

Board member Holland Powell asked Selma City chief financial officer Grindal Harris to confirm what an invoice really was.

“Would you agree that an invoice is more than just a statement of ‘amount due’, it’s also a description of services rendered … that’s asking for a description of services that have been performed?” Powell said.

Harris said she agrees, and suggested that board members email Nicole Pezent, of Professional Development Services with STI, with further questions.

Interim superintendent of education Gerald Shirley said no one persuaded him to contact STI, but he moved on his own to discontinue the alleged contract.

“After there had been some controversy with STI, I called Mrs. Nicole (Pezent) and asked her to terminate our services that they would provide, and then that’s when the discussion entered into the amount being owed. I asked her again, ‘if we owe you something, it needs to be put in writing.’ But initially, the call was made to terminate the services.”

Board member Frank Chestnut feels the move on Shirley’s part, was responsible.

“This board is not trying to duck, dodge or hide … that’s evident,” Chestnut said. “They (the services) should’ve been discontinued when the board voted in down … that’s the time to do it.”

Board president Henry Hicks said there are still some questions. Hicks said he wants to have minutes pulled from July through Oct. 13 meetings to be read during the board’s next work session.

“I’m going to take executive privilege to tell Mrs. Harris … send us the signed second contract that was entered and if this call had not been made to STI, to send an invoice, would they have billed us for the services?” Hicks said. “I’m still under the impression that we were not entered into a contract … “

The work session is scheduled for Tuesday, April 3.