ARGYLE - Paul Lyles, chief financial officer for the Argyle school district, has been placed on paid administrative leave, and school board members continue to discuss his contract in executive-session meetings.
The leave took effect Sept. 16, according to documents obtained through a public records request.
The school district did not disclose the reason. Superintendent Telena Wright, who authorized the leave, said only that it's "a personnel issue."
Tiger Hanner, Lyles' attorney, said he and his client are waiting to learn the circumstances surrounding his client's leave and the closed-session discussions.
"He's on paid leave, and beyond that we don't know anything more," Hanner said. "We really don't have any answers."
In an Aug. 29 meeting, the last meeting Lyles attended, school board members expressed their concern with a second budget amendment he presented for the 2010-11 year. His amendment showed that some budget lines were being increased by more than $687,000 total due to an increase in expenditures throughout the year. The amendment also reflected an increase in revenue of less than $75,000.
School board members questioned the discrepancy. Lyles said that not all revenue changes were reflected in the second budget amendment.
Board members approved the budget amendment as presented in a 6-0 vote, according to meeting minutes.
But in a recording of that Aug. 29 meeting, available on the district's website, board members ask for a monthly overview summary, better reporting of district finances and periodic budget amendments.
On Sept. 15, the board met in closed session to discuss Lyles' contract duties, employment and evaluation. No action was taken after the session that day.
The board since then has met in closed session meetings four other times, most recently Monday, to discuss the topic with the board's attorney. No action has been taken at the meetings.
Board President Randy McKellar has said that since this is an ongoing personnel issue, he has no comment.
Lyles has been employed with the Argyle district since 2005.
This is the second time Lyles has been placed on paid administrative leave, according to district information. His last leave was in 2007.
According to documents, he allowed a former district employee to purchase a district vehicle for personal use and the person allegedly did not pay for the vehicle. Lyles failed to notify the superintendent at the time about the arrangement, according to the documents.
Hanner said that it was his recollection that the vehicle was paid for. He said the 2007 administrative leave is irrelevant.
"That was dealt with back then, and he [Lyles] was brought back to work and that was that," Hanner said. "That was four years ago."
BRITNEY TABOR can be reached at 940-566-6876. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org .