NJ School Board Explains $110,000 Payoff of ‘Pooper’ Super
KENILWORTH — It was a better move economically and legally to settle with the "Pooperintendent" rather than risk a lengthy legal battle, district officials say.
Former Kenilworth superintendent Thomas Tramaglini, accused of repeatedly defecating on the Holmdel district's high school track, was paid nearly $110,000 to quit his job.
The Asbury Park Press last week reported that Tramaglini was paid more than $24,500 in two months' salary and more than $23,800 for 42 days of unused vacation in exchange for his resignation. He also was paid $61,460 for the months he was suspended following his April arrest.
The board said he would have received the money one way or another under the terms of his contract and that the deal saved the district $200,000 in salary and legal fees.
"In reality, the Board negotiated an agreement consistent with state law and approved by the Commissioner of Education, through which the Board traded nearly two years of salary and benefits for about two months of salary. In doing so, the Board saved well over $200,000 in salary, benefits, and legal fees which would have been spent on any tenure case," the statement read.
The board said it wanted to "bring this situation to a conclusion so that, as we said at the time, we could return "to the main mission of the district … in the best interests of all concerned."
Tramaglini was arrested on April 30 and charged with lewdness, littering and defecating in public after a Holmdel High School employee investigated a report of human feces being found on or near the track on a daily basis.
Police said their investigation using surveillance video identified Tramaglini as the person responsible for the incidents. Tramaglini lives in a condo in nearby Matatwan.
A Municipal Court trial date has not yet been set. Tramaglini's lawyer, Matthew Adams, has questioned the veracity of the video because the footage was taken using a camera borrowed by a school janitor. A Holmdel police officer made a DVD copy of the footage and returned the camera. The memory card used to record the footage has since been recorded over.
Adams said the memory card contained meta data that is key to his client's case.