Tuesday, July 21, 2009

BREAKING NEWS - School Boards Insurance Company of Pennsylvania, Inc. v Phoenixville Area School District and Dr. David Noyes

This isn't the first time I opened my front door and found a sheaf of papers on my front porch. Such caution harkens back to days when revelations of political shenanigans made newspaper editors literally dance on their desks.

This time, however, is the first in which the papers (which are public documents) are related to the Phoenixville Area School District and provide physical verification of a rumored civil lawsuit.

For those who have a subscription to the Chester County website and access to the public legal documents regarding lawsuits, etc., the docket number on this lawsuit is 09-2490, and it was filed on March 06, 2009.

It may take me some time to provide access to the documents via a link from my website, but I will provide a portion taken from the copy I have in my possession.


By way of this Complaint the School Boards Insurance Company of Pennsylvania Inc. ("SBIC") alleges as follows:

1. This is an insurance coverage declaratory judgment action and reimbursement suit in which SBIC seeks a declaration that it has no duty to defend or indemnify Dr. David Noyes in an arbitration claim against him brought by his employer or former employer, the Phoenixville Area School District (the "District" or "PASD").

2. As discussed in detail herein, the District has sued its own employee (in arbitration), Dr. Noyes, for failing to do his job (the "PASD Arbitration). The District suit is actually a suit against itself to pass the district's self-imposed losses onto it's third party liability insurer.

3. Liability insurance, such as that provided to the District by SBIC, does not cover damages due to employee malfeasance. Rather such insurance covers claims bought by third parties against the insured.

4. Both Dr. Noyes and PASD claim that the PASD's claim against Dr. Noyes is covered under the SBIC policy.

5. SBIC disputes coverage, but nonetheless has agreed to provide a defenses to Dr. Noyes, subject to a full and complete reservation of rights.

6. SBIC brings this action seeking a declaration of its obligations, if any, including a declaration that it has no duty to defend or indemnify Dr. Noyes in the PASD Arbitration, that it may withdraw its defense of Dr. Noyes in the PASD Arbitration and that it is entitled to reimbursement of any defense costs incurred in defending Dr. Noyes in the PASD Arbitration.


The document consists of approximately 20 pages and details events regarding the now abandoned Kimberton Elementary School project.

As I mentioned earlier, I will post a link to the civil lawsuit as soon as it becomes available.


Anonymous said...

Well there must be a lawsuit fairy fluttering around Phoenixville tonight because I got a copy of this stuck in my door too. It also says that there was 60 days that the school board had to investigate the enviromental concerns with the Kimberton school property and that at least two board members Mary Parris and Mark Casaday and even the board's lawyer Ron Williams knew about the enviromental concerns even though they are always saying that they had no idea. To me it looks like they are trying to blame Dr. Noyes fully for the mess even though they knew already that there was a problem and even that lawyer knew there was a problem.

23. The board through its President Casaday (and perhaps others) was aware of the 60 day investigation period and ability to demand remediation of the property of termination

24. Members of the board expressed concern about the enviromental issues at the property before the sale was final but did nothing to demand remediation or to stop the project from moving forward

25. Mary Parris, a member of the board had concerns about enviromental issues going back to the time that the board was investigating the property but did nothing to demand remediation or stop the purchase of the property

26. mark Casaday the board president, knew through out the investigation of the property that the property was contaminated by groundwater. Casaday had been in on discussions regarding the issue. He did nothing to demand remediation of stop the purchase

27. Robb Frees, one time president of the board advised Dr. Noyes that the groundwater in the area was polluted

28. Dr. Noyes testified that he and the district relied on lawyers to advise them relating to the investigation/purchase of the property. One such lawyer was Ronald L. Williams of Stevens & Lee. It is clear that Stevens & Lee as well as Steve Buck of that firm knew in 2004 and 2005 of debris and enviromental issues with the property and the ability of the district to terminate the agreement of sale

39. In or before June 30, 2009 the district retained Ronald L. Williams the same lawyer who provided advice to Dr. Noyes and the board about the property to conduct an investigation into this matter

40. Ronald L. Williams could not conduct an impartial investigation into what role he himself played (if any) in the problems with the purchase of the property.

Anonymous said...

Karen. The suit says that Noyse paid 100% of the claim of 250K. Insurance companies NEVER pay 100% unless there is somebody who is very, very guilty.

It also says they're suing him for the entire $5 million that Noyse wasted on Kimbodump. See a listing of how he loved spending Other People's Money at www.slanguage.com/pasdblog1.html.

If you really want something interesting, send a right to know letter to pasd, c/o Barbara Burke-Stevenson and request a copy of the forensic audit that the state just did on PASD.

It uncovers all the misappropriation of funds that have been going on during, and probably before, the Noyse administration.

Misappropriation of funds, whether from a non-profit event or pizzas for the cheerleaders, is stealing.

Email your request to her at BurkeStevensonB@PASD.K12.PA.US. They have 5 business days to legally process your request.

We need to clean house at pasd of all the crooks so we can move forward.

My guess is that they are blaming Noyse for Kimberton, but perhaps there's so much other baggage involved with his admin, that he has no choice but to accept their blame?

Do the crime. Do the time.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like Ron Williams is an idiot and the whole PASD is crazy for, in effect, bringing a lawsuit against itself. I'm not a rocket scientist, but it seems to me the whole board and its lawyers may want to look into going back to school themselves. One idiot following after the other. (I use the word idiot by its definition of a foolish person, not name calling.)

Anonymous said...

hmmmmmmm who was on the PASD School Board, during the years Dr Noyes was Superintendent?

Anonymous said...

So the school board was advised that it had itself covered with some kind of insurance/indemnification coverage and now finds out it is not quite that simple. The insurance company says there is some kind of self-created hardship. Has this group learned anything? Does this sound familiar?
This school board must grow up and learn from past mistakes. It must terminate the agreement with Deveney and the library foundation before they bring more trouble on the taxpaying homeowners. Phoenixville borough council must reverse its vacation of Second Avenue and prevent this same kind of thing from happening.

Anonymous said...

Karen ,
It has come to my attention that the Phx. High School Boys Basketball coach and also another employee ,not a teacher,has been dismissed from their duties.A call to Deb Dawson might be warranted to shed some light on this.Apparently on Thursday a meeting took place at the High School where some parents were pointing fingers at other parents and the whole situation got ugly.Some former players and parents were trying to save Bill Detweiler's job but I believe that it is all but a moot point at this time.

Anonymous said...

There was a forensic audit performed by the state of Pennsylvania regarding pasd and may shed light on all the resignations. I've heard about misappropriation of funds among the administration and teachers.

You can email your request for this document to

Dr. Barbara Burke-Stevenson
Acting Superintendent

It's called stealing if you don't work for the government. Go to the wawa and snag a pack of gum and see what happens. At pasd, you're told, if you quit, we won't press charges. Not how it happens in real life...

Anonymous said...

Another one bites the dust.Stay tuned.Where the hell is the media in all of this.Way better dirt then OJR.

Anonymous said...

I am surprised that there has been nothing in the paper about the Phoenixville Boys Basketball team. There was a special meeting not long ago involving the school board, parents, and players regarding PIAA issues and the coaches. Apparently there were some things going on that may not have been proper. Lots of rumors out there. Someone needs to clear the air.

Anonymous said...

I've heard about misappropriation of funds among the administration and teachers. Isn't this stealing? Why were charges not pressed against of these people? Why has nothing been in the paper? There are too many rumors spreading around. The air needs to be cleared and the truth come out.