Mayor’s attempt at superintendent’s job disturbing, deflating

It isn’t everyday that the mayor of the region’s largest city applies for a superintendent’s position in a major school district a few miles away.

But beyond the uniqueness of Williamsport Mayor Gabriel J. Campana’s application, there is disappointment in his view of the situation.

The mayor said he was not planning to change jobs if he were selected to lead the Montoursville Area School District. He was planning to keep both jobs. The mayor said he was merely trying to take his doctorate degree and parlay it into an additional employment opportunity “to better my family.” That is his right.

But his determination that you can be a superintendent and a mayor and do both jobs well shows a disturbing detachment from reality.

It also demeans both residents of Williamsport and the Montoursville Area School District. Neither group wants or deserves to be second fiddle on a daily basis while the mayor performs an employment juggling act. They both would get shortchanged under this situation. These are both full-time public service jobs that require 24/7 attention by the occupant.

It is also disturbing that the mayor indicated the $70,000 salary as mayor of Williamsport somehow forced him to seek a second job. He pointed out that he is making less than he made eight years ago as a teacher.

No one made him run for a first, second or third term as Williamsport’s mayor. If the salary is that inadequate, he should never have sought the position in the first place.

As for the superintendent’s position, there is a rational argument to be made that it is a much more complex position than mayor, with teachers, parents, board members and multitudes of small groups to answer to and a complex battery of state and federal issues to deal with.

It’s quite presumptious to believe the superintendent’s job can be handled effectively while moonlighting as mayor of the region’s largest city.

In our view, residents of Williamsport who elected Campana mayor deserve assurances that he still has his attention firmly focused on them and is not looking for the next big thing to come along. And considering they elected him three times with the expectation he would be a full-time mayor, he owes them an apology.

Friday: Mayor’s receipts probe correctly goes to state Attorney General’s office.

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