State Superintendent of Schools Cindy Hill denied that her office inappropriately used federal money, denied that they hid documents from legislators, and didn’t understand why some of her employees feared for their jobs.
Hill finally got her chance to address those issues and others during a sometimes feisty hearing before a special legislative committee that is trying to determine if Hill should be impeached for her actions when she ran the Department of Education. Hill says she used federal money for a reading program because she understood if the money wasn’t spent it would be lost. She told the committee that she was thrilled that the State Department of Education was asked to help a struggling Fremont County School District with reading and disagrees with claims that she or the department did anything improper.
“Anything we were involved in there we were very committed to ensure that we did it appropriately and legally.”
At times during the hearing Hill was frustrated and it led to feisty exchanges with attorney Bruce Salzburg who was asking the questions. Hill challenged Salzburg’s ethics and fairness near the end of the proceedings.
“You have chosen not to share all facts with this committee and I don’t know why, but I do worry about the potential for witness tampering and the one sidedness of the witnesses who came before you. With the exception of Sheryl Lain, the other 14 are one sided. And there are people out there who can give you accurate information.”
The committee allowed Hill to suggest more witnesses and will not take action on whether to proceed with impeachment until later.