CCSD board member files motion addressing claims

CCSD Superintendent Don Levinski accuses Board President Randy Manning of living outside Kirtland and misusing funds

Noel Lyn Smith
At left, Central Consolidated School District board president Randy Manning speaks, on Nov. 10 in the school boardroom in Shiprock.

FARMINGTON — Central Consolidated School District Board President Randy Manning has filed a motion to dismiss allegations he does not live in the section of the district he represents and that he misused public funds.

Manning's action is in response to an amended complaint and petition CCSD Superintendent Don Levinski, who is undergoing a discharge hearing by the board, filed on Nov. 8 in 11th Judicial District Court.

The complaint claims Manning moved from Kirtland to Farmington more than six months ago and has been seen leaving and arriving at the Farmington residence.

"He is therefore unqualified as a matter of law to serve as a member of the CCSD Board of Education and should be ousted from the office," the complaint states.

Manning represents District 1, which consists of Kirtland and Fruitland, on the five-member board. He has served on the board since 1993, according to court documents.

CCSD board continues Levinski's hearing

As for the claim that he misused funds, the complaint calls for him to be further prohibited from serving because he "misused public funds to engage in private, prurient activities."

The second allegation claims when Manning was attending a school board related conference in June in Albuquerque, he spent time at The Viewpoint, an adult entertainment business, in response to a meeting he set up using Craigslist.

Eleanor K. Bratton, Levinski's attorney, said today the Craigslist advertisement was a solicitation for sex. Bratton said she had not reviewed Manning's recent filing and could not comment on it.

Andrew Sanchez, Manning's attorney, could not be reached for comment today. Manning filed the motion to dismiss and strike Levinski's complaint and petition on Nov. 9.

Restraining order request against board denied

The motion states the intent of Levinski's action is to remove Manning from the board as a way to prevent board members from continuing the discharge hearing.

The court document states Levinski demonstrated "bad faith" in alleging Manning visited The Viewpoint and that the allegation is not relevant to the issue of his residence.

It further states the suggestion of personal scandal surrounding sexual orientation — the solicitation was allegedly for gay sex — is a form of forcing Manning away from his duties as a board member.

The motion also states that Manning does live in Kirtland, which he asserts in an affidavit submitted to the court, within District 1 and meets the requirements of the state School Election Law to serve on the board.

Complaint filed against CCSD board member

In October, Levinski filed a complaint against board member Ruthda Thomas alleging she does not reside in the district she represents on the board.

Thomas has filed a motion to dismiss that complaint, and a hearing in regards to the case is scheduled for Nov. 28.

Meanwhile, the board will continue the discharge hearing for Levinski on Friday and Saturday in Shiprock.

This will be the third and fourth times board members will convene to continue the hearing on Levinski that started on Oct. 25.

A complaint and application for a temporary restraining order Levinski filed on Nov. 7 to stop the hearings states the notice of intent to discharge him consists of 25 separate allegations.

It further states a majority of the allegations focus on personnel decisions Levinski made between 2011 and 2015 and a total of 33 witnesses for the discharge hearing have been identified by the parties.

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636.