School Board Opts for November 2008 Parcel Tax

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Polling Shows Plausible but Difficult Battle to Get it Approved

Yesterday morning, in a special meeting, the Davis Joint Unified School Board viewed preliminary polling of focus group results for a proposed parcel tax. The findings show significant support for such a proposal of between 57% to 62%–however that support is lower than the two-thirds threshold. Moreover, both polling focus group results showed very strong currents of distrust for government accountability and fear about current state and national economic tides.

On the basis of these findings, the board by a 5-0 vote, decided to place a parcel tax on the November ballot. They will still have to work out most of the details such as the amount of the funding, the duration, and the specifics of what this parcel tax would fund.

The research was conducted by EMRC Research with assistance from local consultant, Jay Ziegler who ran the previous parcel tax.

They began with a focus group study which focused on Davis Seniors and also younger Davis voters. These individuals were considered middle voters who were neither strongly in support nor strongly opposed to a parcel tax. They were also considered persuadable on this issue.

Frankly, some of the results of the focus group study resembled the comments section of the Vanguard.

What they found was a deep distrust of local government among some of the focus group participants. Notably they do not distinguish between the performance of the City Council and that of the school district (something that we noted in fact on the campaign trail as well). They believe that the District has the incentive to continually increase the budget year to year and that any funding from a parcel tax will become part of the larger pot of funding expectations and expenditures that cannot be tracked. Accountability is a huge concern for the focus group.

These participants were aware of the state budget crisis and the local impact on schools, but were very reluctant to increase taxes locally. They want assurances that money raised in Davis stays local and is not taken by the state. They are further concerned that money raised locally would simply result in the district getting lower amounts of funding from state (they do not understand in other words how funding for schools works and that is an important component of any campaign to educate the public). What I found interesting, is that Jay Ziegler mentioned that they were more likely to pass a short-term sales tax rather than a parcel tax.

Accountability again is a key issue. They want a set of specific funding priorities that can be measured and tracked. The longer the duration of the parcel tax, the more accountability is required, since they were concerned that as time goes on voters would forget about what was promised. They want a community-led, independent assessment of the district’s funding priorities and benchmarks. They would trust independent financial experts to audit the status of the parcel tax and make recommendations to the district and the public. (It should be noted that all these things were done for Measure Q already).

A final note of interest, the current parcel tax did not heavily factor into their decision about a new parcel tax. None of them knew the amount of the current parcel tax and most of the participants suggested that strong accountability would increase their support for a parcel tax regardless of the amount.

They then went through the polling results which were literally received at 4 pm on Sunday afternoon. Two things to be mindful of. The margin of error overall was plus or minus 5.7 percent. Half of the participants in the poll heard questions based on an $80 parcel tax and half heard it for $140. That means that the split sample margin is plus or minus 8! Keep that in mind when these results are discussed.

For the purposes of this discussion there are really five categories–two in the affirmative and two in the negative and one neutral or don’t know–that have been combined into affirmative, negative, or don’t know. The first question dealt with how much need there is for more money for the school district. 36% said there was a great need, 35% said some need, 11% did not know, 10% said little need, 8% said no need. So 71% answered in the affirmative and 18% in the negative. That shows a soft support, but there is at least a two-thirds awareness that there is a need for more money. They viewed that as a positive for the parcel tax.

Additionally 67% were concerned about funding for the Davis Schools, considerably less were concerned about funding for the county and the city. 72% said maintaining the quality of our schools should be a top priority.

The next polling result is a critical one. 31% say that taxes are already high enough and that they would vote against any tax increase. 68% were opposed to that. That number is right on the border. The pollster suggested that this number has risen across the board in the last year. She thinks this is a caution but a good indicator that a parcel tax is plausible.

66% trust DJUSD to manage tax dollars appropriately, however, at the same time 60% agree that there has been a waste of opening and closing new schools. 33% believe that the district already has enough but the money has just been mismanaged with 59% disagreeing.

So those are the generic questions. They then put a basic write up for a parcel tax including accountability stipulations. On the initial vote, neither the $80 nor the $140 would pass if the election was held today (keeping in mind the high margin of error).

The $80 sample had 62% support while the $140 had 57% support. The bottom line here is that the district will have to work to get either one of these passed. One thing that was clear from these results was that they need to determine how much they need rather than base it on polling results.

This is going to require, according to Jay Ziegler, a privately funded campaign to connect with the voters and give them reasons as to why we need this.

When they broke down the support, they found, not surprisingly that there is much stronger support from DJUSD parents as compared to non-parents. Among both non-parents and older voters, support for the $80 parcel tax is under the two-thirds threshold. On the other hand, no demographic had less than 57% support for the lower of the two. For $140, 83% of parents support passage but only 48% of non-parents. Likely voters were at 62% for the $80 and occasional voters slightly lower at 58%.

The scary statistic of the day is really the lack of basic knowledge by the voters. For example, only 45% knew that they currently paid a parcel tax while 51% did not know and 6% thought we do not currently pay a parcel tax.

Accountability is huge–they want to know where the money is spent, know that there is transparency and accountability and there was overwhelming support (76%) for having a sunset date and the district having to bring it back to the voters.

The board and the consultants went back and forth on March of 2009 versus November of 2008. The basic consensus was that November would be a tougher and more costly election given the very high turn out. The key demographic would be student voters who will come out to vote for Obama and trying to to get them to support a parcel tax.

On the other hand, there are good reasons for having it in November. The data, according to Mr. Ziegler benefits from a three to six month sustained period of public awareness about the District’s budget problems. The further we get from that, the more difficult it is. Also this would allow the district to go into the 2009-2010 budget process in January knowing where they stand on money.

Richard Harris made a crucial point however about where the district’s finances fall. They are starting with roughly a $1.7 million hole that was bridged temporarily by the Davis Schools Foundation. In addition, and he suggested that media reporting did not make this clear, they used about $1.2 million in carryover funds the other day to balance the budget. So realistically, the district will start next year at a $3 million deficit.

There was definitely an awareness on the part of the board about the accountability issue. There is an oversight committee for Measure Q, but it has not yet had a chance to operate and work, because Measure Q funding was just approved for the next school year. So we really have not had a chance to test the system yet.

The board did not make a determination on the amount of the parcel tax yet. However, I would guess they will go with a figure closer to an additional $140 per parcel rather than $80. It gets them to the amount of money they need and they realize that either way, getting a parcel tax passed will not be a walk in the park.

That is really the final point that needs to be made. The district knows this is not a slam dunk. The last parcel tax had very strong support from the beginning. It was largely a “get out their vote” campaign. This campaign is going to need to educate the voters during a time when many will focus on the Presidential Race. And, it will have to convince an 80 to 85 percent turnout rather than a 30 percent turnout.

What seemed clear watching this is that everyone knows this will be difficult. There is a good chance it will not pass. However, they see no other option other than cutting teachers, programs, and facilities. There was also a recognition of the voters who have serious reservations and they need to build in those accountability mechanisms.

Personally I think a November ballot measure is more risky than a March one, but I understand the rationale for going forward now.

—Doug Paul Davis reporting

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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240 thoughts on “School Board Opts for November 2008 Parcel Tax”

  1. Ann

    I am a bit skeptical, but I do understand that we need the parcel tax and I will vote to support it. I hope they follow the suggestion of explaining to the voters how accountability will be measured. Thank you for covering this issue. It’s good to know what is happening.

  2. Ann

    I am a bit skeptical, but I do understand that we need the parcel tax and I will vote to support it. I hope they follow the suggestion of explaining to the voters how accountability will be measured. Thank you for covering this issue. It’s good to know what is happening.

  3. Ann

    I am a bit skeptical, but I do understand that we need the parcel tax and I will vote to support it. I hope they follow the suggestion of explaining to the voters how accountability will be measured. Thank you for covering this issue. It’s good to know what is happening.

  4. Ann

    I am a bit skeptical, but I do understand that we need the parcel tax and I will vote to support it. I hope they follow the suggestion of explaining to the voters how accountability will be measured. Thank you for covering this issue. It’s good to know what is happening.

  5. Anonymous

    “What I found interesting, is that Jay Ziegler mentioned that they were more likely to pass a short-term sales tax rather than a parcel tax.”

    A short-term sales tax is more “progressive” than the parcel tax where everyone, no matter what their economic status, pays the same amount. Those with more money, spend more and ultimately pay more sales tax, especially if the new sales tax is leveraged towards “luxuries”. We all know that these DJUSD parcel taxes, once put in place, NEVER are withdrawn no matter what the economic future holds; a sales tax with a sunset provision forces the District to go to the voters and make their case again. I will not be voting for an additional parcel tax but will seriously consider the short-term sales-tax concept specifically directed to getting the DJUSD through its fiscal shortfall. Full accountability and transparancy will still be critical to my vote for additional DJUSD support.

  6. Anonymous

    “What I found interesting, is that Jay Ziegler mentioned that they were more likely to pass a short-term sales tax rather than a parcel tax.”

    A short-term sales tax is more “progressive” than the parcel tax where everyone, no matter what their economic status, pays the same amount. Those with more money, spend more and ultimately pay more sales tax, especially if the new sales tax is leveraged towards “luxuries”. We all know that these DJUSD parcel taxes, once put in place, NEVER are withdrawn no matter what the economic future holds; a sales tax with a sunset provision forces the District to go to the voters and make their case again. I will not be voting for an additional parcel tax but will seriously consider the short-term sales-tax concept specifically directed to getting the DJUSD through its fiscal shortfall. Full accountability and transparancy will still be critical to my vote for additional DJUSD support.

  7. Anonymous

    “What I found interesting, is that Jay Ziegler mentioned that they were more likely to pass a short-term sales tax rather than a parcel tax.”

    A short-term sales tax is more “progressive” than the parcel tax where everyone, no matter what their economic status, pays the same amount. Those with more money, spend more and ultimately pay more sales tax, especially if the new sales tax is leveraged towards “luxuries”. We all know that these DJUSD parcel taxes, once put in place, NEVER are withdrawn no matter what the economic future holds; a sales tax with a sunset provision forces the District to go to the voters and make their case again. I will not be voting for an additional parcel tax but will seriously consider the short-term sales-tax concept specifically directed to getting the DJUSD through its fiscal shortfall. Full accountability and transparancy will still be critical to my vote for additional DJUSD support.

  8. Anonymous

    “What I found interesting, is that Jay Ziegler mentioned that they were more likely to pass a short-term sales tax rather than a parcel tax.”

    A short-term sales tax is more “progressive” than the parcel tax where everyone, no matter what their economic status, pays the same amount. Those with more money, spend more and ultimately pay more sales tax, especially if the new sales tax is leveraged towards “luxuries”. We all know that these DJUSD parcel taxes, once put in place, NEVER are withdrawn no matter what the economic future holds; a sales tax with a sunset provision forces the District to go to the voters and make their case again. I will not be voting for an additional parcel tax but will seriously consider the short-term sales-tax concept specifically directed to getting the DJUSD through its fiscal shortfall. Full accountability and transparancy will still be critical to my vote for additional DJUSD support.

  9. wdf

    Good article! I don’t think this kind of detail will ever show up in the Enterprise. And that is one problem with this whole issue — it requires more detail to explain that is usually offered in a newspaper article or, worse yet, a local TV news story.

    Last Wednesday’s (June 18) school board meeting is a very good one to watch for a comprehensive explanation of the school budget. You can watch it here, where it is archived.

    One role that I appreciate seeing in school board members is making the district staff give their explanations in plainer language and avoid professional lingo and jargon.

    One example you can watch in last Wednesday’s meeting is an explanation of COLA. It is a built-in cost-of-doing-business factor that accounts for rising costs and built-in salary increases, mostly for teachers, that comes from teaching experience — salary steps. The state is not providing that component of funding next year, so that’s a cost the district is eating.

    That was an explanation that didn’t make it into the Enterprise coverage.

    Anyway, that was the meeting which passed the school budget. It also pretty much explains where we’ll be starting for the next budget.

  10. wdf

    Good article! I don’t think this kind of detail will ever show up in the Enterprise. And that is one problem with this whole issue — it requires more detail to explain that is usually offered in a newspaper article or, worse yet, a local TV news story.

    Last Wednesday’s (June 18) school board meeting is a very good one to watch for a comprehensive explanation of the school budget. You can watch it here, where it is archived.

    One role that I appreciate seeing in school board members is making the district staff give their explanations in plainer language and avoid professional lingo and jargon.

    One example you can watch in last Wednesday’s meeting is an explanation of COLA. It is a built-in cost-of-doing-business factor that accounts for rising costs and built-in salary increases, mostly for teachers, that comes from teaching experience — salary steps. The state is not providing that component of funding next year, so that’s a cost the district is eating.

    That was an explanation that didn’t make it into the Enterprise coverage.

    Anyway, that was the meeting which passed the school budget. It also pretty much explains where we’ll be starting for the next budget.

  11. wdf

    Good article! I don’t think this kind of detail will ever show up in the Enterprise. And that is one problem with this whole issue — it requires more detail to explain that is usually offered in a newspaper article or, worse yet, a local TV news story.

    Last Wednesday’s (June 18) school board meeting is a very good one to watch for a comprehensive explanation of the school budget. You can watch it here, where it is archived.

    One role that I appreciate seeing in school board members is making the district staff give their explanations in plainer language and avoid professional lingo and jargon.

    One example you can watch in last Wednesday’s meeting is an explanation of COLA. It is a built-in cost-of-doing-business factor that accounts for rising costs and built-in salary increases, mostly for teachers, that comes from teaching experience — salary steps. The state is not providing that component of funding next year, so that’s a cost the district is eating.

    That was an explanation that didn’t make it into the Enterprise coverage.

    Anyway, that was the meeting which passed the school budget. It also pretty much explains where we’ll be starting for the next budget.

  12. wdf

    Good article! I don’t think this kind of detail will ever show up in the Enterprise. And that is one problem with this whole issue — it requires more detail to explain that is usually offered in a newspaper article or, worse yet, a local TV news story.

    Last Wednesday’s (June 18) school board meeting is a very good one to watch for a comprehensive explanation of the school budget. You can watch it here, where it is archived.

    One role that I appreciate seeing in school board members is making the district staff give their explanations in plainer language and avoid professional lingo and jargon.

    One example you can watch in last Wednesday’s meeting is an explanation of COLA. It is a built-in cost-of-doing-business factor that accounts for rising costs and built-in salary increases, mostly for teachers, that comes from teaching experience — salary steps. The state is not providing that component of funding next year, so that’s a cost the district is eating.

    That was an explanation that didn’t make it into the Enterprise coverage.

    Anyway, that was the meeting which passed the school budget. It also pretty much explains where we’ll be starting for the next budget.

  13. wdf

    anon 8:08

    We all know that these DJUSD parcel taxes, once put in place, NEVER are withdrawn no matter what the economic future holds

    Parcel taxes in Davis have been renewed at 4 year intervals, usually in a November election. They can be rejected at those times.

    The parcel tax passed in Davis in 1999 was less than the previous 4-year parcel tax passed in 1995.

    Local sales tax to support schools is a rarer thing in California than a parcel tax.

    I would wonder what the projected revenue would be for a sales tax.

  14. wdf

    anon 8:08

    We all know that these DJUSD parcel taxes, once put in place, NEVER are withdrawn no matter what the economic future holds

    Parcel taxes in Davis have been renewed at 4 year intervals, usually in a November election. They can be rejected at those times.

    The parcel tax passed in Davis in 1999 was less than the previous 4-year parcel tax passed in 1995.

    Local sales tax to support schools is a rarer thing in California than a parcel tax.

    I would wonder what the projected revenue would be for a sales tax.

  15. wdf

    anon 8:08

    We all know that these DJUSD parcel taxes, once put in place, NEVER are withdrawn no matter what the economic future holds

    Parcel taxes in Davis have been renewed at 4 year intervals, usually in a November election. They can be rejected at those times.

    The parcel tax passed in Davis in 1999 was less than the previous 4-year parcel tax passed in 1995.

    Local sales tax to support schools is a rarer thing in California than a parcel tax.

    I would wonder what the projected revenue would be for a sales tax.

  16. wdf

    anon 8:08

    We all know that these DJUSD parcel taxes, once put in place, NEVER are withdrawn no matter what the economic future holds

    Parcel taxes in Davis have been renewed at 4 year intervals, usually in a November election. They can be rejected at those times.

    The parcel tax passed in Davis in 1999 was less than the previous 4-year parcel tax passed in 1995.

    Local sales tax to support schools is a rarer thing in California than a parcel tax.

    I would wonder what the projected revenue would be for a sales tax.

  17. Robin W

    I am very supportive of an additional parcel tax to support the schools. But this November is a terrible time for a vote on such a parcel tax because of the combination of the economic crunch on voters (inflation, gas prices) and the huge percentage of this November’s likely voters who know very little about school finance and have no personal stake in the quality of our schools.

    The only way the measure has a chance of passing in November is if it proposes a tax that will apply only to single-family residences (thus excluding most UCD students and the folks who are hit the hardest by the economic downturn) and if seniors can apply for a waiver — and if both of these aspects of the measure are well publicized.

  18. Robin W

    I am very supportive of an additional parcel tax to support the schools. But this November is a terrible time for a vote on such a parcel tax because of the combination of the economic crunch on voters (inflation, gas prices) and the huge percentage of this November’s likely voters who know very little about school finance and have no personal stake in the quality of our schools.

    The only way the measure has a chance of passing in November is if it proposes a tax that will apply only to single-family residences (thus excluding most UCD students and the folks who are hit the hardest by the economic downturn) and if seniors can apply for a waiver — and if both of these aspects of the measure are well publicized.

  19. Robin W

    I am very supportive of an additional parcel tax to support the schools. But this November is a terrible time for a vote on such a parcel tax because of the combination of the economic crunch on voters (inflation, gas prices) and the huge percentage of this November’s likely voters who know very little about school finance and have no personal stake in the quality of our schools.

    The only way the measure has a chance of passing in November is if it proposes a tax that will apply only to single-family residences (thus excluding most UCD students and the folks who are hit the hardest by the economic downturn) and if seniors can apply for a waiver — and if both of these aspects of the measure are well publicized.

  20. Robin W

    I am very supportive of an additional parcel tax to support the schools. But this November is a terrible time for a vote on such a parcel tax because of the combination of the economic crunch on voters (inflation, gas prices) and the huge percentage of this November’s likely voters who know very little about school finance and have no personal stake in the quality of our schools.

    The only way the measure has a chance of passing in November is if it proposes a tax that will apply only to single-family residences (thus excluding most UCD students and the folks who are hit the hardest by the economic downturn) and if seniors can apply for a waiver — and if both of these aspects of the measure are well publicized.

  21. Anonymous

    sigh… how do you support the kids without giving the people who got them into this mess by allowing the construction of unneeded schools more money? How do you support the teachers, while at the same time make it clear that the teacher’s union and its ridiculous seniority-protecting is the bulk of the problem?

  22. Anonymous

    sigh… how do you support the kids without giving the people who got them into this mess by allowing the construction of unneeded schools more money? How do you support the teachers, while at the same time make it clear that the teacher’s union and its ridiculous seniority-protecting is the bulk of the problem?

  23. Anonymous

    sigh… how do you support the kids without giving the people who got them into this mess by allowing the construction of unneeded schools more money? How do you support the teachers, while at the same time make it clear that the teacher’s union and its ridiculous seniority-protecting is the bulk of the problem?

  24. Anonymous

    sigh… how do you support the kids without giving the people who got them into this mess by allowing the construction of unneeded schools more money? How do you support the teachers, while at the same time make it clear that the teacher’s union and its ridiculous seniority-protecting is the bulk of the problem?

  25. Mike

    I don’t like parcel taxes as a general rule. I recall watching renters with kids having “Yes on Parcel Tax” signs in front of their houses. These are the same people who freak-out if they then get a rent increase to cover the cost of the passed tax. I would really prefer just having a per student fee…

  26. Mike

    I don’t like parcel taxes as a general rule. I recall watching renters with kids having “Yes on Parcel Tax” signs in front of their houses. These are the same people who freak-out if they then get a rent increase to cover the cost of the passed tax. I would really prefer just having a per student fee…

  27. Mike

    I don’t like parcel taxes as a general rule. I recall watching renters with kids having “Yes on Parcel Tax” signs in front of their houses. These are the same people who freak-out if they then get a rent increase to cover the cost of the passed tax. I would really prefer just having a per student fee…

  28. Mike

    I don’t like parcel taxes as a general rule. I recall watching renters with kids having “Yes on Parcel Tax” signs in front of their houses. These are the same people who freak-out if they then get a rent increase to cover the cost of the passed tax. I would really prefer just having a per student fee…

  29. Don Shor

    I think a parcel tax will fail at either level ($80 or $140). In the current economic and political environment the $140 proposal would be especially risky.

    2009 is likely to be a pretty volatile time for economic news. Home sales, foreclosures, poor retail environment, high energy costs, and a reduced state budget will all combine to affect nearly every demographic of the voting public.

    Based on the polling, I would urge the district to pursue the sales tax option. They also need to join with other districts to lobby for changes in school funding (not for more money, but for more consistent funding), and to start planning for a budget without increased revenues.

  30. Don Shor

    I think a parcel tax will fail at either level ($80 or $140). In the current economic and political environment the $140 proposal would be especially risky.

    2009 is likely to be a pretty volatile time for economic news. Home sales, foreclosures, poor retail environment, high energy costs, and a reduced state budget will all combine to affect nearly every demographic of the voting public.

    Based on the polling, I would urge the district to pursue the sales tax option. They also need to join with other districts to lobby for changes in school funding (not for more money, but for more consistent funding), and to start planning for a budget without increased revenues.

  31. Don Shor

    I think a parcel tax will fail at either level ($80 or $140). In the current economic and political environment the $140 proposal would be especially risky.

    2009 is likely to be a pretty volatile time for economic news. Home sales, foreclosures, poor retail environment, high energy costs, and a reduced state budget will all combine to affect nearly every demographic of the voting public.

    Based on the polling, I would urge the district to pursue the sales tax option. They also need to join with other districts to lobby for changes in school funding (not for more money, but for more consistent funding), and to start planning for a budget without increased revenues.

  32. Don Shor

    I think a parcel tax will fail at either level ($80 or $140). In the current economic and political environment the $140 proposal would be especially risky.

    2009 is likely to be a pretty volatile time for economic news. Home sales, foreclosures, poor retail environment, high energy costs, and a reduced state budget will all combine to affect nearly every demographic of the voting public.

    Based on the polling, I would urge the district to pursue the sales tax option. They also need to join with other districts to lobby for changes in school funding (not for more money, but for more consistent funding), and to start planning for a budget without increased revenues.

  33. Anonymous

    Most of our US economic gurus are now talking about the need for a “value-added” tax, much like the countries of Europe have had for some time, to raise the needed government revenues at the Federal and State level.
    A sales-tax is not quite the same “animal” but close.

  34. Anonymous

    Most of our US economic gurus are now talking about the need for a “value-added” tax, much like the countries of Europe have had for some time, to raise the needed government revenues at the Federal and State level.
    A sales-tax is not quite the same “animal” but close.

  35. Anonymous

    Most of our US economic gurus are now talking about the need for a “value-added” tax, much like the countries of Europe have had for some time, to raise the needed government revenues at the Federal and State level.
    A sales-tax is not quite the same “animal” but close.

  36. Anonymous

    Most of our US economic gurus are now talking about the need for a “value-added” tax, much like the countries of Europe have had for some time, to raise the needed government revenues at the Federal and State level.
    A sales-tax is not quite the same “animal” but close.

  37. Black Bart

    WDF,

    Why do you blame the teahers for wanting to keep up with higher prices for food energy and medical costs? Also, experience step increases should balance out as people retire and new teachers are hired unless there are demographic bulges that may exist since the district has not had a static population over the years.

    David, you talk about the district needing 3 million dollars more next year since Davis Foundation raised 1.8 million and another 1.2 used (I’m guessing) is one time funding. Again you are assuming a static budget situation but it is likely that there will be more retirements that will reduce the number of layoffs next year if no addition funding comes through. The district dodged the bullet this year and we should expect that things will not be as bad next year since there is some time to plan ahead.

    Having said all that it is crucial that the district find some additional funding, the alternative being layoffs and program cuts.

    Finally, something nobody has mentioned is the psychological impact layoff notices have on teachers, they really distract teachers from the work they need to focus on and kill morale.

  38. Black Bart

    WDF,

    Why do you blame the teahers for wanting to keep up with higher prices for food energy and medical costs? Also, experience step increases should balance out as people retire and new teachers are hired unless there are demographic bulges that may exist since the district has not had a static population over the years.

    David, you talk about the district needing 3 million dollars more next year since Davis Foundation raised 1.8 million and another 1.2 used (I’m guessing) is one time funding. Again you are assuming a static budget situation but it is likely that there will be more retirements that will reduce the number of layoffs next year if no addition funding comes through. The district dodged the bullet this year and we should expect that things will not be as bad next year since there is some time to plan ahead.

    Having said all that it is crucial that the district find some additional funding, the alternative being layoffs and program cuts.

    Finally, something nobody has mentioned is the psychological impact layoff notices have on teachers, they really distract teachers from the work they need to focus on and kill morale.

  39. Black Bart

    WDF,

    Why do you blame the teahers for wanting to keep up with higher prices for food energy and medical costs? Also, experience step increases should balance out as people retire and new teachers are hired unless there are demographic bulges that may exist since the district has not had a static population over the years.

    David, you talk about the district needing 3 million dollars more next year since Davis Foundation raised 1.8 million and another 1.2 used (I’m guessing) is one time funding. Again you are assuming a static budget situation but it is likely that there will be more retirements that will reduce the number of layoffs next year if no addition funding comes through. The district dodged the bullet this year and we should expect that things will not be as bad next year since there is some time to plan ahead.

    Having said all that it is crucial that the district find some additional funding, the alternative being layoffs and program cuts.

    Finally, something nobody has mentioned is the psychological impact layoff notices have on teachers, they really distract teachers from the work they need to focus on and kill morale.

  40. Black Bart

    WDF,

    Why do you blame the teahers for wanting to keep up with higher prices for food energy and medical costs? Also, experience step increases should balance out as people retire and new teachers are hired unless there are demographic bulges that may exist since the district has not had a static population over the years.

    David, you talk about the district needing 3 million dollars more next year since Davis Foundation raised 1.8 million and another 1.2 used (I’m guessing) is one time funding. Again you are assuming a static budget situation but it is likely that there will be more retirements that will reduce the number of layoffs next year if no addition funding comes through. The district dodged the bullet this year and we should expect that things will not be as bad next year since there is some time to plan ahead.

    Having said all that it is crucial that the district find some additional funding, the alternative being layoffs and program cuts.

    Finally, something nobody has mentioned is the psychological impact layoff notices have on teachers, they really distract teachers from the work they need to focus on and kill morale.

  41. Black Bart

    Dear Anon,

    The people who wasted the money and built the new schools are gone.

    As for that seniority system you talked about I didn’t believe in seniority either until I had some. What would you replace it with? It is easy to say we should get rid of it but how would you decide who should stay and who should go? Should it be on merit alone? If so then shouldn’t the district get rid of the cap on years of experience it has for new hires? Otherwise whenever districts needed to reduce payroll they would simply fire the most experienced teachers and make them take new jobs in other districts for less pay. It would create a musical chairs situation. How would you keep that from happening?

  42. Black Bart

    Dear Anon,

    The people who wasted the money and built the new schools are gone.

    As for that seniority system you talked about I didn’t believe in seniority either until I had some. What would you replace it with? It is easy to say we should get rid of it but how would you decide who should stay and who should go? Should it be on merit alone? If so then shouldn’t the district get rid of the cap on years of experience it has for new hires? Otherwise whenever districts needed to reduce payroll they would simply fire the most experienced teachers and make them take new jobs in other districts for less pay. It would create a musical chairs situation. How would you keep that from happening?

  43. Black Bart

    Dear Anon,

    The people who wasted the money and built the new schools are gone.

    As for that seniority system you talked about I didn’t believe in seniority either until I had some. What would you replace it with? It is easy to say we should get rid of it but how would you decide who should stay and who should go? Should it be on merit alone? If so then shouldn’t the district get rid of the cap on years of experience it has for new hires? Otherwise whenever districts needed to reduce payroll they would simply fire the most experienced teachers and make them take new jobs in other districts for less pay. It would create a musical chairs situation. How would you keep that from happening?

  44. Black Bart

    Dear Anon,

    The people who wasted the money and built the new schools are gone.

    As for that seniority system you talked about I didn’t believe in seniority either until I had some. What would you replace it with? It is easy to say we should get rid of it but how would you decide who should stay and who should go? Should it be on merit alone? If so then shouldn’t the district get rid of the cap on years of experience it has for new hires? Otherwise whenever districts needed to reduce payroll they would simply fire the most experienced teachers and make them take new jobs in other districts for less pay. It would create a musical chairs situation. How would you keep that from happening?

  45. Doug Paul Davis

    Black Bart: I was relaying what Richard Harris said that we are essentially starting off in the hole. There are obviously a lot of variables here, but that’s what we are looking at.

    A few other points: first, the school board is not required to take the entire parcel allotment.

    Second, sales tax is not an option. For those who mentioned that it was less regressive, it’s not. Sales tax is the most regressive tax there is because people at lower levels of income spend a much higher percentage of their income on consumer goods that are taxable.

    There is another aspect that people have missed–there is an opt-out exemption for seniors and low income people.

    At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools. That’s what people are deciding between.

  46. Doug Paul Davis

    Black Bart: I was relaying what Richard Harris said that we are essentially starting off in the hole. There are obviously a lot of variables here, but that’s what we are looking at.

    A few other points: first, the school board is not required to take the entire parcel allotment.

    Second, sales tax is not an option. For those who mentioned that it was less regressive, it’s not. Sales tax is the most regressive tax there is because people at lower levels of income spend a much higher percentage of their income on consumer goods that are taxable.

    There is another aspect that people have missed–there is an opt-out exemption for seniors and low income people.

    At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools. That’s what people are deciding between.

  47. Doug Paul Davis

    Black Bart: I was relaying what Richard Harris said that we are essentially starting off in the hole. There are obviously a lot of variables here, but that’s what we are looking at.

    A few other points: first, the school board is not required to take the entire parcel allotment.

    Second, sales tax is not an option. For those who mentioned that it was less regressive, it’s not. Sales tax is the most regressive tax there is because people at lower levels of income spend a much higher percentage of their income on consumer goods that are taxable.

    There is another aspect that people have missed–there is an opt-out exemption for seniors and low income people.

    At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools. That’s what people are deciding between.

  48. Doug Paul Davis

    Black Bart: I was relaying what Richard Harris said that we are essentially starting off in the hole. There are obviously a lot of variables here, but that’s what we are looking at.

    A few other points: first, the school board is not required to take the entire parcel allotment.

    Second, sales tax is not an option. For those who mentioned that it was less regressive, it’s not. Sales tax is the most regressive tax there is because people at lower levels of income spend a much higher percentage of their income on consumer goods that are taxable.

    There is another aspect that people have missed–there is an opt-out exemption for seniors and low income people.

    At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools. That’s what people are deciding between.

  49. Doug Paul Davis

    “how do you support the kids without giving the people who got them into this mess by allowing the construction of unneeded schools more money?”

    Something to think about–not one of the school board members were on the board that authorized the building of new schools. And not one of the top administrators were in place then either. So that’s really not a true choice.

  50. Doug Paul Davis

    “how do you support the kids without giving the people who got them into this mess by allowing the construction of unneeded schools more money?”

    Something to think about–not one of the school board members were on the board that authorized the building of new schools. And not one of the top administrators were in place then either. So that’s really not a true choice.

  51. Doug Paul Davis

    “how do you support the kids without giving the people who got them into this mess by allowing the construction of unneeded schools more money?”

    Something to think about–not one of the school board members were on the board that authorized the building of new schools. And not one of the top administrators were in place then either. So that’s really not a true choice.

  52. Doug Paul Davis

    “how do you support the kids without giving the people who got them into this mess by allowing the construction of unneeded schools more money?”

    Something to think about–not one of the school board members were on the board that authorized the building of new schools. And not one of the top administrators were in place then either. So that’s really not a true choice.

  53. Anonymous

    “At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools. That’s what people are deciding between.”

    Let’s stop with the terror tactics. If a parcel tax fails in November, we will see another revenue vehicle( a smaller parcel tax or sales tax) put to the Davis voters at the very next possible opportunity.

  54. Anonymous

    “At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools. That’s what people are deciding between.”

    Let’s stop with the terror tactics. If a parcel tax fails in November, we will see another revenue vehicle( a smaller parcel tax or sales tax) put to the Davis voters at the very next possible opportunity.

  55. Anonymous

    “At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools. That’s what people are deciding between.”

    Let’s stop with the terror tactics. If a parcel tax fails in November, we will see another revenue vehicle( a smaller parcel tax or sales tax) put to the Davis voters at the very next possible opportunity.

  56. Anonymous

    “At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools. That’s what people are deciding between.”

    Let’s stop with the terror tactics. If a parcel tax fails in November, we will see another revenue vehicle( a smaller parcel tax or sales tax) put to the Davis voters at the very next possible opportunity.

  57. SODAite

    I think skeptial voters will be very interested in hearing HOW the oversight board will deal with the Measure Q funds. There was little mention of Q during the last crisis…..those of us who remember the old board, staff still have bitter taste in our mouths. Yes, realize they are different, but want to see positive changes in process, not just different faces! The fact that 1.2m was taken from reserves is also very important to state. That was not always front and center…..Thanks DPD!

  58. SODAite

    I think skeptial voters will be very interested in hearing HOW the oversight board will deal with the Measure Q funds. There was little mention of Q during the last crisis…..those of us who remember the old board, staff still have bitter taste in our mouths. Yes, realize they are different, but want to see positive changes in process, not just different faces! The fact that 1.2m was taken from reserves is also very important to state. That was not always front and center…..Thanks DPD!

  59. SODAite

    I think skeptial voters will be very interested in hearing HOW the oversight board will deal with the Measure Q funds. There was little mention of Q during the last crisis…..those of us who remember the old board, staff still have bitter taste in our mouths. Yes, realize they are different, but want to see positive changes in process, not just different faces! The fact that 1.2m was taken from reserves is also very important to state. That was not always front and center…..Thanks DPD!

  60. SODAite

    I think skeptial voters will be very interested in hearing HOW the oversight board will deal with the Measure Q funds. There was little mention of Q during the last crisis…..those of us who remember the old board, staff still have bitter taste in our mouths. Yes, realize they are different, but want to see positive changes in process, not just different faces! The fact that 1.2m was taken from reserves is also very important to state. That was not always front and center…..Thanks DPD!

  61. Doug Paul Davis

    I don’t think you are going to see a smaller parcel tax, you may see another parcel tax in March if the one fails in November, but it will probably be the same size. But not before in January you see them throw out the probable layoffs of 100 teachers again. You can call it a “terror” tactic but it’s really a math issue. You are not going to see a sales tax.

  62. Doug Paul Davis

    I don’t think you are going to see a smaller parcel tax, you may see another parcel tax in March if the one fails in November, but it will probably be the same size. But not before in January you see them throw out the probable layoffs of 100 teachers again. You can call it a “terror” tactic but it’s really a math issue. You are not going to see a sales tax.

  63. Doug Paul Davis

    I don’t think you are going to see a smaller parcel tax, you may see another parcel tax in March if the one fails in November, but it will probably be the same size. But not before in January you see them throw out the probable layoffs of 100 teachers again. You can call it a “terror” tactic but it’s really a math issue. You are not going to see a sales tax.

  64. Doug Paul Davis

    I don’t think you are going to see a smaller parcel tax, you may see another parcel tax in March if the one fails in November, but it will probably be the same size. But not before in January you see them throw out the probable layoffs of 100 teachers again. You can call it a “terror” tactic but it’s really a math issue. You are not going to see a sales tax.

  65. Anonymous

    “Sales tax is the most regressive tax there is because people at lower levels of income spend a much higher percentage of their income on consumer goods that are taxable.”

    Social-Democratic European countries that run on value-added taxes provide free universal health care,free higher education and more to their voters. It would be news to them that theirs is the most regressive tax system.

  66. Anonymous

    “Sales tax is the most regressive tax there is because people at lower levels of income spend a much higher percentage of their income on consumer goods that are taxable.”

    Social-Democratic European countries that run on value-added taxes provide free universal health care,free higher education and more to their voters. It would be news to them that theirs is the most regressive tax system.

  67. Anonymous

    “Sales tax is the most regressive tax there is because people at lower levels of income spend a much higher percentage of their income on consumer goods that are taxable.”

    Social-Democratic European countries that run on value-added taxes provide free universal health care,free higher education and more to their voters. It would be news to them that theirs is the most regressive tax system.

  68. Anonymous

    “Sales tax is the most regressive tax there is because people at lower levels of income spend a much higher percentage of their income on consumer goods that are taxable.”

    Social-Democratic European countries that run on value-added taxes provide free universal health care,free higher education and more to their voters. It would be news to them that theirs is the most regressive tax system.

  69. Bill

    “At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools.”

    How about we reduce the salaries and benefits of district employees, instead? The reason the district lacks money is because it has increased its pay packages to its employees at a rate double the rate of inflation. The problem is not with revenue growth. The problem is with expenditures.

  70. Bill

    “At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools.”

    How about we reduce the salaries and benefits of district employees, instead? The reason the district lacks money is because it has increased its pay packages to its employees at a rate double the rate of inflation. The problem is not with revenue growth. The problem is with expenditures.

  71. Bill

    “At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools.”

    How about we reduce the salaries and benefits of district employees, instead? The reason the district lacks money is because it has increased its pay packages to its employees at a rate double the rate of inflation. The problem is not with revenue growth. The problem is with expenditures.

  72. Bill

    “At this point it is either a parcel tax or nothing. Nothing means we fire teachers and cut programs and possible close schools.”

    How about we reduce the salaries and benefits of district employees, instead? The reason the district lacks money is because it has increased its pay packages to its employees at a rate double the rate of inflation. The problem is not with revenue growth. The problem is with expenditures.

  73. wdf

    Black Bart said…
    WDF,

    Why do you blame the teahers for wanting to keep up with higher prices for food energy and medical costs? Also, experience step increases should balance out as people retire and new teachers are hired unless there are demographic bulges that may exist since the district has not had a static population over the years.

    I hope I didn’t give the impression that I was blaming the teachers. I was communicating that budgets are not static numbers from year to year. Just because a service costs $100 one year does not necessarily mean that it costs $100 the following year. COLA (“cost of living adjustment”) is factored in, year-to-year to teachers’ contracts, energy costs, cost of consumer goods.

    The state is not giving anything for a COLA this year in the May revise. So DJUSD (and other school districts in the state) have to eat that cost this year.

    Please refer to the video archive of the June 18 school board meeting for extensive discussion of this.

    As for retirements, keep in mind that there are good years and bad years in the hiring cycle. That plays out in the retirement cycle as well. You figure that it averages out over time, but some years there will be more retirements than others. I don’t know what the age/experience demographics of the teaching population is in DJUSD, but I’m sure those are some statistics to check out.

    If 30 years is a typical career duration, then keep in mind that 30 years ago Proposition 13 passed. That was not a time when new teachers were being hired, and that probably goes for the entire state. It may be a few years before retirements can significantly reduce the salary burden of the district.

  74. wdf

    Black Bart said…
    WDF,

    Why do you blame the teahers for wanting to keep up with higher prices for food energy and medical costs? Also, experience step increases should balance out as people retire and new teachers are hired unless there are demographic bulges that may exist since the district has not had a static population over the years.

    I hope I didn’t give the impression that I was blaming the teachers. I was communicating that budgets are not static numbers from year to year. Just because a service costs $100 one year does not necessarily mean that it costs $100 the following year. COLA (“cost of living adjustment”) is factored in, year-to-year to teachers’ contracts, energy costs, cost of consumer goods.

    The state is not giving anything for a COLA this year in the May revise. So DJUSD (and other school districts in the state) have to eat that cost this year.

    Please refer to the video archive of the June 18 school board meeting for extensive discussion of this.

    As for retirements, keep in mind that there are good years and bad years in the hiring cycle. That plays out in the retirement cycle as well. You figure that it averages out over time, but some years there will be more retirements than others. I don’t know what the age/experience demographics of the teaching population is in DJUSD, but I’m sure those are some statistics to check out.

    If 30 years is a typical career duration, then keep in mind that 30 years ago Proposition 13 passed. That was not a time when new teachers were being hired, and that probably goes for the entire state. It may be a few years before retirements can significantly reduce the salary burden of the district.

  75. wdf

    Black Bart said…
    WDF,

    Why do you blame the teahers for wanting to keep up with higher prices for food energy and medical costs? Also, experience step increases should balance out as people retire and new teachers are hired unless there are demographic bulges that may exist since the district has not had a static population over the years.

    I hope I didn’t give the impression that I was blaming the teachers. I was communicating that budgets are not static numbers from year to year. Just because a service costs $100 one year does not necessarily mean that it costs $100 the following year. COLA (“cost of living adjustment”) is factored in, year-to-year to teachers’ contracts, energy costs, cost of consumer goods.

    The state is not giving anything for a COLA this year in the May revise. So DJUSD (and other school districts in the state) have to eat that cost this year.

    Please refer to the video archive of the June 18 school board meeting for extensive discussion of this.

    As for retirements, keep in mind that there are good years and bad years in the hiring cycle. That plays out in the retirement cycle as well. You figure that it averages out over time, but some years there will be more retirements than others. I don’t know what the age/experience demographics of the teaching population is in DJUSD, but I’m sure those are some statistics to check out.

    If 30 years is a typical career duration, then keep in mind that 30 years ago Proposition 13 passed. That was not a time when new teachers were being hired, and that probably goes for the entire state. It may be a few years before retirements can significantly reduce the salary burden of the district.

  76. wdf

    Black Bart said…
    WDF,

    Why do you blame the teahers for wanting to keep up with higher prices for food energy and medical costs? Also, experience step increases should balance out as people retire and new teachers are hired unless there are demographic bulges that may exist since the district has not had a static population over the years.

    I hope I didn’t give the impression that I was blaming the teachers. I was communicating that budgets are not static numbers from year to year. Just because a service costs $100 one year does not necessarily mean that it costs $100 the following year. COLA (“cost of living adjustment”) is factored in, year-to-year to teachers’ contracts, energy costs, cost of consumer goods.

    The state is not giving anything for a COLA this year in the May revise. So DJUSD (and other school districts in the state) have to eat that cost this year.

    Please refer to the video archive of the June 18 school board meeting for extensive discussion of this.

    As for retirements, keep in mind that there are good years and bad years in the hiring cycle. That plays out in the retirement cycle as well. You figure that it averages out over time, but some years there will be more retirements than others. I don’t know what the age/experience demographics of the teaching population is in DJUSD, but I’m sure those are some statistics to check out.

    If 30 years is a typical career duration, then keep in mind that 30 years ago Proposition 13 passed. That was not a time when new teachers were being hired, and that probably goes for the entire state. It may be a few years before retirements can significantly reduce the salary burden of the district.

  77. Black Bart

    Anon,

    I think what you are refering to is that the district signed a contract with the teachers that covered more then one year. Your post made it sound like there was some built in district cola issue beyond what was negotiated in the current contract. It is not unusual for labor contracts to cover more then one year. The problem here is not that the district has a multi-year deal with the teachers it is that the state doesn’t have a multi-year deal with the districts.

  78. Black Bart

    Anon,

    I think what you are refering to is that the district signed a contract with the teachers that covered more then one year. Your post made it sound like there was some built in district cola issue beyond what was negotiated in the current contract. It is not unusual for labor contracts to cover more then one year. The problem here is not that the district has a multi-year deal with the teachers it is that the state doesn’t have a multi-year deal with the districts.

  79. Black Bart

    Anon,

    I think what you are refering to is that the district signed a contract with the teachers that covered more then one year. Your post made it sound like there was some built in district cola issue beyond what was negotiated in the current contract. It is not unusual for labor contracts to cover more then one year. The problem here is not that the district has a multi-year deal with the teachers it is that the state doesn’t have a multi-year deal with the districts.

  80. Black Bart

    Anon,

    I think what you are refering to is that the district signed a contract with the teachers that covered more then one year. Your post made it sound like there was some built in district cola issue beyond what was negotiated in the current contract. It is not unusual for labor contracts to cover more then one year. The problem here is not that the district has a multi-year deal with the teachers it is that the state doesn’t have a multi-year deal with the districts.

  81. Anonymous

    “Social democratic Europe doesn’t have the wage differential that we have.”

    That’s why the US tax model would retain the progressive income tax structure and ADD a value-added tax component. Certainly, a parcel tax that taxes someone with the income level to own a home valued at $1,000,000 the same as someone who owns a $350,000 home is a regressive kind of tax.

  82. Anonymous

    “Social democratic Europe doesn’t have the wage differential that we have.”

    That’s why the US tax model would retain the progressive income tax structure and ADD a value-added tax component. Certainly, a parcel tax that taxes someone with the income level to own a home valued at $1,000,000 the same as someone who owns a $350,000 home is a regressive kind of tax.

  83. Anonymous

    “Social democratic Europe doesn’t have the wage differential that we have.”

    That’s why the US tax model would retain the progressive income tax structure and ADD a value-added tax component. Certainly, a parcel tax that taxes someone with the income level to own a home valued at $1,000,000 the same as someone who owns a $350,000 home is a regressive kind of tax.

  84. Anonymous

    “Social democratic Europe doesn’t have the wage differential that we have.”

    That’s why the US tax model would retain the progressive income tax structure and ADD a value-added tax component. Certainly, a parcel tax that taxes someone with the income level to own a home valued at $1,000,000 the same as someone who owns a $350,000 home is a regressive kind of tax.

  85. FreddieOakley

    The only thorough explication of the moronic and self-serving path to the current DJUSD $$ crisis appeared in the Vanguard.

    I have repeatedly told school decision-makers that it would be crazy to ask for more money without issuing a credible explanation for this situation and a plan for avoiding similar disasters in the future.

    I have seen no indication that any of those who should cowboy-up and explain the mess are planning to do so, including the fiscal officers who were not responsible (but still brush off questions) or the hired-guns (who should know that they have to answer these questions—like it or don’t—)

    I am finding it very, very difficult to support folks who don’t support full, meaningful disclosure and discussion.

    I feel terrible for students and staff who are the victims of first – bad management, and then – bad public relations.

    I love that the people of Davis were so generous when the Schools Foundation mounted their drive. But I think they may very well be deluded. Of course I can’t be sure, since no one at DJUSD has seen fit to publish a comprehensive account of how we got into this mess..

  86. FreddieOakley

    The only thorough explication of the moronic and self-serving path to the current DJUSD $$ crisis appeared in the Vanguard.

    I have repeatedly told school decision-makers that it would be crazy to ask for more money without issuing a credible explanation for this situation and a plan for avoiding similar disasters in the future.

    I have seen no indication that any of those who should cowboy-up and explain the mess are planning to do so, including the fiscal officers who were not responsible (but still brush off questions) or the hired-guns (who should know that they have to answer these questions—like it or don’t—)

    I am finding it very, very difficult to support folks who don’t support full, meaningful disclosure and discussion.

    I feel terrible for students and staff who are the victims of first – bad management, and then – bad public relations.

    I love that the people of Davis were so generous when the Schools Foundation mounted their drive. But I think they may very well be deluded. Of course I can’t be sure, since no one at DJUSD has seen fit to publish a comprehensive account of how we got into this mess..

  87. FreddieOakley

    The only thorough explication of the moronic and self-serving path to the current DJUSD $$ crisis appeared in the Vanguard.

    I have repeatedly told school decision-makers that it would be crazy to ask for more money without issuing a credible explanation for this situation and a plan for avoiding similar disasters in the future.

    I have seen no indication that any of those who should cowboy-up and explain the mess are planning to do so, including the fiscal officers who were not responsible (but still brush off questions) or the hired-guns (who should know that they have to answer these questions—like it or don’t—)

    I am finding it very, very difficult to support folks who don’t support full, meaningful disclosure and discussion.

    I feel terrible for students and staff who are the victims of first – bad management, and then – bad public relations.

    I love that the people of Davis were so generous when the Schools Foundation mounted their drive. But I think they may very well be deluded. Of course I can’t be sure, since no one at DJUSD has seen fit to publish a comprehensive account of how we got into this mess..

  88. FreddieOakley

    The only thorough explication of the moronic and self-serving path to the current DJUSD $$ crisis appeared in the Vanguard.

    I have repeatedly told school decision-makers that it would be crazy to ask for more money without issuing a credible explanation for this situation and a plan for avoiding similar disasters in the future.

    I have seen no indication that any of those who should cowboy-up and explain the mess are planning to do so, including the fiscal officers who were not responsible (but still brush off questions) or the hired-guns (who should know that they have to answer these questions—like it or don’t—)

    I am finding it very, very difficult to support folks who don’t support full, meaningful disclosure and discussion.

    I feel terrible for students and staff who are the victims of first – bad management, and then – bad public relations.

    I love that the people of Davis were so generous when the Schools Foundation mounted their drive. But I think they may very well be deluded. Of course I can’t be sure, since no one at DJUSD has seen fit to publish a comprehensive account of how we got into this mess..

  89. Bill

    “I feel terrible for students and staff who are the victims of first – bad management, and then – bad public relations.”

    The increase in the wages and benefits paid to staff has been double the rate of inflation. You feel sorry for them how? What a load of #### ####.

  90. Bill

    “I feel terrible for students and staff who are the victims of first – bad management, and then – bad public relations.”

    The increase in the wages and benefits paid to staff has been double the rate of inflation. You feel sorry for them how? What a load of #### ####.

  91. Bill

    “I feel terrible for students and staff who are the victims of first – bad management, and then – bad public relations.”

    The increase in the wages and benefits paid to staff has been double the rate of inflation. You feel sorry for them how? What a load of #### ####.

  92. Bill

    “I feel terrible for students and staff who are the victims of first – bad management, and then – bad public relations.”

    The increase in the wages and benefits paid to staff has been double the rate of inflation. You feel sorry for them how? What a load of #### ####.

  93. Anonymous

    If Freddie Oakley finds credibility in this blog, she must believe the moon is made of cheese. DPD has shown nothing other than the fact he frequently skirts on libel. Also, Freddie, can you please point to the next conspiracy? Down the hall to the left, you say? Thanks.

  94. Anonymous

    If Freddie Oakley finds credibility in this blog, she must believe the moon is made of cheese. DPD has shown nothing other than the fact he frequently skirts on libel. Also, Freddie, can you please point to the next conspiracy? Down the hall to the left, you say? Thanks.

  95. Anonymous

    If Freddie Oakley finds credibility in this blog, she must believe the moon is made of cheese. DPD has shown nothing other than the fact he frequently skirts on libel. Also, Freddie, can you please point to the next conspiracy? Down the hall to the left, you say? Thanks.

  96. Anonymous

    If Freddie Oakley finds credibility in this blog, she must believe the moon is made of cheese. DPD has shown nothing other than the fact he frequently skirts on libel. Also, Freddie, can you please point to the next conspiracy? Down the hall to the left, you say? Thanks.

  97. PRED Old Timer

    An informal poll taken by me at work today(UCD) showed that no one that lived in Davis was for the parcel tax. The few people I asked that live outside of Davis in other parts of Yolo co. did, however, snicker.

  98. PRED Old Timer

    An informal poll taken by me at work today(UCD) showed that no one that lived in Davis was for the parcel tax. The few people I asked that live outside of Davis in other parts of Yolo co. did, however, snicker.

  99. PRED Old Timer

    An informal poll taken by me at work today(UCD) showed that no one that lived in Davis was for the parcel tax. The few people I asked that live outside of Davis in other parts of Yolo co. did, however, snicker.

  100. PRED Old Timer

    An informal poll taken by me at work today(UCD) showed that no one that lived in Davis was for the parcel tax. The few people I asked that live outside of Davis in other parts of Yolo co. did, however, snicker.

  101. wdf

    Jeff Hudson’s article on this subject in today’s Enterprise was more substantial than I anticipated.

    DPD had more info about the details of the polling. Jeff Hudson gave more historical context. Also Jeff mentioned John Munn’s appearance and comments in representing the Yolo County Taxpayers Association.

  102. wdf

    Jeff Hudson’s article on this subject in today’s Enterprise was more substantial than I anticipated.

    DPD had more info about the details of the polling. Jeff Hudson gave more historical context. Also Jeff mentioned John Munn’s appearance and comments in representing the Yolo County Taxpayers Association.

  103. wdf

    Jeff Hudson’s article on this subject in today’s Enterprise was more substantial than I anticipated.

    DPD had more info about the details of the polling. Jeff Hudson gave more historical context. Also Jeff mentioned John Munn’s appearance and comments in representing the Yolo County Taxpayers Association.

  104. wdf

    Jeff Hudson’s article on this subject in today’s Enterprise was more substantial than I anticipated.

    DPD had more info about the details of the polling. Jeff Hudson gave more historical context. Also Jeff mentioned John Munn’s appearance and comments in representing the Yolo County Taxpayers Association.

  105. oakley and vanguard supporter

    Anonymous,

    If you find the blog so uncredible why do you visit? I agree with Freddie and appreciate DPD’s assessment.

  106. oakley and vanguard supporter

    Anonymous,

    If you find the blog so uncredible why do you visit? I agree with Freddie and appreciate DPD’s assessment.

  107. oakley and vanguard supporter

    Anonymous,

    If you find the blog so uncredible why do you visit? I agree with Freddie and appreciate DPD’s assessment.

  108. oakley and vanguard supporter

    Anonymous,

    If you find the blog so uncredible why do you visit? I agree with Freddie and appreciate DPD’s assessment.

  109. 1000 is enough

    76.77
    165.90
    144.60
    598.24
    ——-
    985.51

    what do those numbers represent? the $ amounts for DJUSD on my yolo county tax bill…I bought my house in 1998.

    What is the district doing with my money? the liberal left says it is only 80 dollars more so you can afford it with the high median income…i have no kids so i think 986 is enough to pay especially since my dollars have not be spent wisely in the past…

  110. 1000 is enough

    76.77
    165.90
    144.60
    598.24
    ——-
    985.51

    what do those numbers represent? the $ amounts for DJUSD on my yolo county tax bill…I bought my house in 1998.

    What is the district doing with my money? the liberal left says it is only 80 dollars more so you can afford it with the high median income…i have no kids so i think 986 is enough to pay especially since my dollars have not be spent wisely in the past…

  111. 1000 is enough

    76.77
    165.90
    144.60
    598.24
    ——-
    985.51

    what do those numbers represent? the $ amounts for DJUSD on my yolo county tax bill…I bought my house in 1998.

    What is the district doing with my money? the liberal left says it is only 80 dollars more so you can afford it with the high median income…i have no kids so i think 986 is enough to pay especially since my dollars have not be spent wisely in the past…

  112. 1000 is enough

    76.77
    165.90
    144.60
    598.24
    ——-
    985.51

    what do those numbers represent? the $ amounts for DJUSD on my yolo county tax bill…I bought my house in 1998.

    What is the district doing with my money? the liberal left says it is only 80 dollars more so you can afford it with the high median income…i have no kids so i think 986 is enough to pay especially since my dollars have not be spent wisely in the past…

  113. Elaine Roberts Musser

    “Anonymous said…
    Is Musser around? I thought we’d have a bunch of negative pronouncements on this topic by now.”

    It is good to know I have been missed! I’ve been busy the last two days attending meetings as a volunteer attorney trying my best to protect the vulnerable senior population (two cases last evening of financial elder abuse, another case today), so have not had a chance to read or comment on this insightful blog. Thanks for an excellent article DPD!!!

    Freddie Oakley put it very well. The reason folks are hesitant to hand over any more dollars for a parcel tax is because:
    1. There doesn’t seem to be any more accountability than before;
    2. It appears Emerson is going to be closed no matter what we do;
    3. Business as usual seems to be the order of the day, in that there seems to be nothing done about too many schools being built;
    4. School district assets continue to be sold off to cover expenditures instead of holding onto assets and leasing them – at some point there will be nothing left in reserves.
    5. We are being asked to pony up an amount that has no justification – it is a figure picked out of thin air. How does it relate to what is NEEDED? The only thing the figure requested relates to is poll numbers of what they think they can get past the voters!!!

    Munn had it right – state what the tax is specifically for, spell out the specific need and how a parcel tax is going to address it. Then devise it so that voters weigh in every so often to renew it. In other words – no parcel tax without accountability.

    Frankly, I do not consider the above comments to be ” a bunch of negative pronouncements”, but constructive criticism. We are telling the School Board what it needs to do in order to pass the parcel tax – they are just not listening. They want their cake and eat it too. If you let them have it, we will get more of the same – requests for blank checks with no end in sight! And more schools closing…

  114. Elaine Roberts Musser

    “Anonymous said…
    Is Musser around? I thought we’d have a bunch of negative pronouncements on this topic by now.”

    It is good to know I have been missed! I’ve been busy the last two days attending meetings as a volunteer attorney trying my best to protect the vulnerable senior population (two cases last evening of financial elder abuse, another case today), so have not had a chance to read or comment on this insightful blog. Thanks for an excellent article DPD!!!

    Freddie Oakley put it very well. The reason folks are hesitant to hand over any more dollars for a parcel tax is because:
    1. There doesn’t seem to be any more accountability than before;
    2. It appears Emerson is going to be closed no matter what we do;
    3. Business as usual seems to be the order of the day, in that there seems to be nothing done about too many schools being built;
    4. School district assets continue to be sold off to cover expenditures instead of holding onto assets and leasing them – at some point there will be nothing left in reserves.
    5. We are being asked to pony up an amount that has no justification – it is a figure picked out of thin air. How does it relate to what is NEEDED? The only thing the figure requested relates to is poll numbers of what they think they can get past the voters!!!

    Munn had it right – state what the tax is specifically for, spell out the specific need and how a parcel tax is going to address it. Then devise it so that voters weigh in every so often to renew it. In other words – no parcel tax without accountability.

    Frankly, I do not consider the above comments to be ” a bunch of negative pronouncements”, but constructive criticism. We are telling the School Board what it needs to do in order to pass the parcel tax – they are just not listening. They want their cake and eat it too. If you let them have it, we will get more of the same – requests for blank checks with no end in sight! And more schools closing…

  115. Elaine Roberts Musser

    “Anonymous said…
    Is Musser around? I thought we’d have a bunch of negative pronouncements on this topic by now.”

    It is good to know I have been missed! I’ve been busy the last two days attending meetings as a volunteer attorney trying my best to protect the vulnerable senior population (two cases last evening of financial elder abuse, another case today), so have not had a chance to read or comment on this insightful blog. Thanks for an excellent article DPD!!!

    Freddie Oakley put it very well. The reason folks are hesitant to hand over any more dollars for a parcel tax is because:
    1. There doesn’t seem to be any more accountability than before;
    2. It appears Emerson is going to be closed no matter what we do;
    3. Business as usual seems to be the order of the day, in that there seems to be nothing done about too many schools being built;
    4. School district assets continue to be sold off to cover expenditures instead of holding onto assets and leasing them – at some point there will be nothing left in reserves.
    5. We are being asked to pony up an amount that has no justification – it is a figure picked out of thin air. How does it relate to what is NEEDED? The only thing the figure requested relates to is poll numbers of what they think they can get past the voters!!!

    Munn had it right – state what the tax is specifically for, spell out the specific need and how a parcel tax is going to address it. Then devise it so that voters weigh in every so often to renew it. In other words – no parcel tax without accountability.

    Frankly, I do not consider the above comments to be ” a bunch of negative pronouncements”, but constructive criticism. We are telling the School Board what it needs to do in order to pass the parcel tax – they are just not listening. They want their cake and eat it too. If you let them have it, we will get more of the same – requests for blank checks with no end in sight! And more schools closing…

  116. Elaine Roberts Musser

    “Anonymous said…
    Is Musser around? I thought we’d have a bunch of negative pronouncements on this topic by now.”

    It is good to know I have been missed! I’ve been busy the last two days attending meetings as a volunteer attorney trying my best to protect the vulnerable senior population (two cases last evening of financial elder abuse, another case today), so have not had a chance to read or comment on this insightful blog. Thanks for an excellent article DPD!!!

    Freddie Oakley put it very well. The reason folks are hesitant to hand over any more dollars for a parcel tax is because:
    1. There doesn’t seem to be any more accountability than before;
    2. It appears Emerson is going to be closed no matter what we do;
    3. Business as usual seems to be the order of the day, in that there seems to be nothing done about too many schools being built;
    4. School district assets continue to be sold off to cover expenditures instead of holding onto assets and leasing them – at some point there will be nothing left in reserves.
    5. We are being asked to pony up an amount that has no justification – it is a figure picked out of thin air. How does it relate to what is NEEDED? The only thing the figure requested relates to is poll numbers of what they think they can get past the voters!!!

    Munn had it right – state what the tax is specifically for, spell out the specific need and how a parcel tax is going to address it. Then devise it so that voters weigh in every so often to renew it. In other words – no parcel tax without accountability.

    Frankly, I do not consider the above comments to be ” a bunch of negative pronouncements”, but constructive criticism. We are telling the School Board what it needs to do in order to pass the parcel tax – they are just not listening. They want their cake and eat it too. If you let them have it, we will get more of the same – requests for blank checks with no end in sight! And more schools closing…

  117. What?

    Richard Harris says $1.2 million in reserves was used to cover shortfalls, plus the $1.7 donated by the DSF, or some such set of figures as the school deficit. That doesn’t necessarily mean that is how much we must have. That’s Harris’s story – and he is the one pushing us to set up a committee for “green schools”, as if we didn’t have enough things to spend money on. How is this going to help us out of our financial mess? Our administrators do not have the time or energy (oops, pardon the pun) to worry about how to implement this, that or the other innovative idea this doofus or his committee come up with so he can say he kept his campaign promises when moving on to higher office.

  118. What?

    Richard Harris says $1.2 million in reserves was used to cover shortfalls, plus the $1.7 donated by the DSF, or some such set of figures as the school deficit. That doesn’t necessarily mean that is how much we must have. That’s Harris’s story – and he is the one pushing us to set up a committee for “green schools”, as if we didn’t have enough things to spend money on. How is this going to help us out of our financial mess? Our administrators do not have the time or energy (oops, pardon the pun) to worry about how to implement this, that or the other innovative idea this doofus or his committee come up with so he can say he kept his campaign promises when moving on to higher office.

  119. What?

    Richard Harris says $1.2 million in reserves was used to cover shortfalls, plus the $1.7 donated by the DSF, or some such set of figures as the school deficit. That doesn’t necessarily mean that is how much we must have. That’s Harris’s story – and he is the one pushing us to set up a committee for “green schools”, as if we didn’t have enough things to spend money on. How is this going to help us out of our financial mess? Our administrators do not have the time or energy (oops, pardon the pun) to worry about how to implement this, that or the other innovative idea this doofus or his committee come up with so he can say he kept his campaign promises when moving on to higher office.

  120. What?

    Richard Harris says $1.2 million in reserves was used to cover shortfalls, plus the $1.7 donated by the DSF, or some such set of figures as the school deficit. That doesn’t necessarily mean that is how much we must have. That’s Harris’s story – and he is the one pushing us to set up a committee for “green schools”, as if we didn’t have enough things to spend money on. How is this going to help us out of our financial mess? Our administrators do not have the time or energy (oops, pardon the pun) to worry about how to implement this, that or the other innovative idea this doofus or his committee come up with so he can say he kept his campaign promises when moving on to higher office.

  121. wdf

    What? said…
    Richard Harris says $1.2 million in reserves was used to cover shortfalls, plus the $1.7 donated by the DSF, or some such set of figures as the school deficit. That doesn’t necessarily mean that is how much we must have.

    It is $1.2 million in carryover money, not reserves. That means $1.2 million did not get spent in last year’s budget.

    Why didn’t it get spent last year? I don’t know for certain. Details are in the budget documents. It was also part of the budget discussion in last Wednesday’s (June 18)meeting. Go here to see the digital archive of the meeting. The budget discussion takes up the first couple of hours of the meeting.

    It probably came from things like not as many substitutes were used this year, or someone left mid-year and position wasn’t filled. There’s more to it, but I don’t remember off the top of my head.

  122. wdf

    What? said…
    Richard Harris says $1.2 million in reserves was used to cover shortfalls, plus the $1.7 donated by the DSF, or some such set of figures as the school deficit. That doesn’t necessarily mean that is how much we must have.

    It is $1.2 million in carryover money, not reserves. That means $1.2 million did not get spent in last year’s budget.

    Why didn’t it get spent last year? I don’t know for certain. Details are in the budget documents. It was also part of the budget discussion in last Wednesday’s (June 18)meeting. Go here to see the digital archive of the meeting. The budget discussion takes up the first couple of hours of the meeting.

    It probably came from things like not as many substitutes were used this year, or someone left mid-year and position wasn’t filled. There’s more to it, but I don’t remember off the top of my head.

  123. wdf

    What? said…
    Richard Harris says $1.2 million in reserves was used to cover shortfalls, plus the $1.7 donated by the DSF, or some such set of figures as the school deficit. That doesn’t necessarily mean that is how much we must have.

    It is $1.2 million in carryover money, not reserves. That means $1.2 million did not get spent in last year’s budget.

    Why didn’t it get spent last year? I don’t know for certain. Details are in the budget documents. It was also part of the budget discussion in last Wednesday’s (June 18)meeting. Go here to see the digital archive of the meeting. The budget discussion takes up the first couple of hours of the meeting.

    It probably came from things like not as many substitutes were used this year, or someone left mid-year and position wasn’t filled. There’s more to it, but I don’t remember off the top of my head.

  124. wdf

    What? said…
    Richard Harris says $1.2 million in reserves was used to cover shortfalls, plus the $1.7 donated by the DSF, or some such set of figures as the school deficit. That doesn’t necessarily mean that is how much we must have.

    It is $1.2 million in carryover money, not reserves. That means $1.2 million did not get spent in last year’s budget.

    Why didn’t it get spent last year? I don’t know for certain. Details are in the budget documents. It was also part of the budget discussion in last Wednesday’s (June 18)meeting. Go here to see the digital archive of the meeting. The budget discussion takes up the first couple of hours of the meeting.

    It probably came from things like not as many substitutes were used this year, or someone left mid-year and position wasn’t filled. There’s more to it, but I don’t remember off the top of my head.

  125. wdf

    What? said…
    That’s Harris’s story – and he is the one pushing us to set up a committee for “green schools”, as if we didn’t have enough things to spend money on. How is this going to help us out of our financial mess?

    If he can demonstrate that any of his ideas would result in *savings*, I would listen.

    Apparently district-wide recycling efforts resulted this year in less trash pick up, which lowered fees to the district. That comes from a conversation with someone who helps with that program.

  126. wdf

    What? said…
    That’s Harris’s story – and he is the one pushing us to set up a committee for “green schools”, as if we didn’t have enough things to spend money on. How is this going to help us out of our financial mess?

    If he can demonstrate that any of his ideas would result in *savings*, I would listen.

    Apparently district-wide recycling efforts resulted this year in less trash pick up, which lowered fees to the district. That comes from a conversation with someone who helps with that program.

  127. wdf

    What? said…
    That’s Harris’s story – and he is the one pushing us to set up a committee for “green schools”, as if we didn’t have enough things to spend money on. How is this going to help us out of our financial mess?

    If he can demonstrate that any of his ideas would result in *savings*, I would listen.

    Apparently district-wide recycling efforts resulted this year in less trash pick up, which lowered fees to the district. That comes from a conversation with someone who helps with that program.

  128. wdf

    What? said…
    That’s Harris’s story – and he is the one pushing us to set up a committee for “green schools”, as if we didn’t have enough things to spend money on. How is this going to help us out of our financial mess?

    If he can demonstrate that any of his ideas would result in *savings*, I would listen.

    Apparently district-wide recycling efforts resulted this year in less trash pick up, which lowered fees to the district. That comes from a conversation with someone who helps with that program.

  129. Anonymous

    “1000 is enough” nailed it!! Can’t be written or spoken with greater clarity than that! Thanks for doing so. Incompetence, Greed and Corruption are the three reasons why this school district has to deal with issues such as this-again and again.

  130. Anonymous

    “1000 is enough” nailed it!! Can’t be written or spoken with greater clarity than that! Thanks for doing so. Incompetence, Greed and Corruption are the three reasons why this school district has to deal with issues such as this-again and again.

  131. Anonymous

    “1000 is enough” nailed it!! Can’t be written or spoken with greater clarity than that! Thanks for doing so. Incompetence, Greed and Corruption are the three reasons why this school district has to deal with issues such as this-again and again.

  132. Anonymous

    “1000 is enough” nailed it!! Can’t be written or spoken with greater clarity than that! Thanks for doing so. Incompetence, Greed and Corruption are the three reasons why this school district has to deal with issues such as this-again and again.

  133. wdf

    Slightly off topic but with relevance:

    There is an effort afloat to recall 4 members of the Woodland JUSD school board. I don’t know where that drive currently stands, but here is an editorial from the Woodland paper that offers some interesting thoughts.

  134. wdf

    Slightly off topic but with relevance:

    There is an effort afloat to recall 4 members of the Woodland JUSD school board. I don’t know where that drive currently stands, but here is an editorial from the Woodland paper that offers some interesting thoughts.

  135. wdf

    Slightly off topic but with relevance:

    There is an effort afloat to recall 4 members of the Woodland JUSD school board. I don’t know where that drive currently stands, but here is an editorial from the Woodland paper that offers some interesting thoughts.

  136. wdf

    Slightly off topic but with relevance:

    There is an effort afloat to recall 4 members of the Woodland JUSD school board. I don’t know where that drive currently stands, but here is an editorial from the Woodland paper that offers some interesting thoughts.

  137. A few observations..

    If there is a Parcel Tax:

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    The tax should be written with explicit bench-marks which will be determined by the oversight committee, and every program will be clearly outlined. “After school programs” is vague. “Nutrition programs” is vague. Every expenditure must be itemized and made public. Posted around town would be preferable.

    There are no new administrative positions for these programs.

    This is all a start. Quite frankly I think it is not good enough. There needs to be more accountability than this.

    I also think the taxes should be reflective of how the economy is doing. How can you ask poor people to continue to pay this in a deteriorating economy? That is not my idea of progressive.
    There must be something in place to terminate the tax if it is not working, or achieving results.

  138. A few observations..

    If there is a Parcel Tax:

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    The tax should be written with explicit bench-marks which will be determined by the oversight committee, and every program will be clearly outlined. “After school programs” is vague. “Nutrition programs” is vague. Every expenditure must be itemized and made public. Posted around town would be preferable.

    There are no new administrative positions for these programs.

    This is all a start. Quite frankly I think it is not good enough. There needs to be more accountability than this.

    I also think the taxes should be reflective of how the economy is doing. How can you ask poor people to continue to pay this in a deteriorating economy? That is not my idea of progressive.
    There must be something in place to terminate the tax if it is not working, or achieving results.

  139. A few observations..

    If there is a Parcel Tax:

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    The tax should be written with explicit bench-marks which will be determined by the oversight committee, and every program will be clearly outlined. “After school programs” is vague. “Nutrition programs” is vague. Every expenditure must be itemized and made public. Posted around town would be preferable.

    There are no new administrative positions for these programs.

    This is all a start. Quite frankly I think it is not good enough. There needs to be more accountability than this.

    I also think the taxes should be reflective of how the economy is doing. How can you ask poor people to continue to pay this in a deteriorating economy? That is not my idea of progressive.
    There must be something in place to terminate the tax if it is not working, or achieving results.

  140. A few observations..

    If there is a Parcel Tax:

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    The tax should be written with explicit bench-marks which will be determined by the oversight committee, and every program will be clearly outlined. “After school programs” is vague. “Nutrition programs” is vague. Every expenditure must be itemized and made public. Posted around town would be preferable.

    There are no new administrative positions for these programs.

    This is all a start. Quite frankly I think it is not good enough. There needs to be more accountability than this.

    I also think the taxes should be reflective of how the economy is doing. How can you ask poor people to continue to pay this in a deteriorating economy? That is not my idea of progressive.
    There must be something in place to terminate the tax if it is not working, or achieving results.

  141. a few observations...

    Also, the tax should be goals oriented. Up till now, the ballot simply asks for $ for programs without saying what the objective is, and the ways in which they are measured if at all. This is criminal.

    I am really hesitant because the school board does not act the least bit guilty for asking people of all incomes to contribute $ they don’t have in a slumping economy. They simply put their hands out every other year.

  142. a few observations...

    Also, the tax should be goals oriented. Up till now, the ballot simply asks for $ for programs without saying what the objective is, and the ways in which they are measured if at all. This is criminal.

    I am really hesitant because the school board does not act the least bit guilty for asking people of all incomes to contribute $ they don’t have in a slumping economy. They simply put their hands out every other year.

  143. a few observations...

    Also, the tax should be goals oriented. Up till now, the ballot simply asks for $ for programs without saying what the objective is, and the ways in which they are measured if at all. This is criminal.

    I am really hesitant because the school board does not act the least bit guilty for asking people of all incomes to contribute $ they don’t have in a slumping economy. They simply put their hands out every other year.

  144. a few observations...

    Also, the tax should be goals oriented. Up till now, the ballot simply asks for $ for programs without saying what the objective is, and the ways in which they are measured if at all. This is criminal.

    I am really hesitant because the school board does not act the least bit guilty for asking people of all incomes to contribute $ they don’t have in a slumping economy. They simply put their hands out every other year.

  145. Sorry WDF..

    If he can demonstrate that any of his ideas would result in *savings*, I would listen.

    who helps with that program.Apparently district-wide recycling efforts resulted this year in less trash pick up, which lowered fees to the district. That comes from a conversation with someone

    6/24/08 11:20 PM

    Excuse me WDF: Harrison wanted to install solar panels on schools, something that is hardly chump change.

  146. Sorry WDF..

    If he can demonstrate that any of his ideas would result in *savings*, I would listen.

    who helps with that program.Apparently district-wide recycling efforts resulted this year in less trash pick up, which lowered fees to the district. That comes from a conversation with someone

    6/24/08 11:20 PM

    Excuse me WDF: Harrison wanted to install solar panels on schools, something that is hardly chump change.

  147. Sorry WDF..

    If he can demonstrate that any of his ideas would result in *savings*, I would listen.

    who helps with that program.Apparently district-wide recycling efforts resulted this year in less trash pick up, which lowered fees to the district. That comes from a conversation with someone

    6/24/08 11:20 PM

    Excuse me WDF: Harrison wanted to install solar panels on schools, something that is hardly chump change.

  148. Sorry WDF..

    If he can demonstrate that any of his ideas would result in *savings*, I would listen.

    who helps with that program.Apparently district-wide recycling efforts resulted this year in less trash pick up, which lowered fees to the district. That comes from a conversation with someone

    6/24/08 11:20 PM

    Excuse me WDF: Harrison wanted to install solar panels on schools, something that is hardly chump change.

  149. wdf

    A few observations.. said…
    If there is a Parcel Tax:

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    How do you do that?

    Is there a current example to follow somewhere?

    Also, the tax should be goals oriented.

    What’s an example of this?

    If an item on the parcel tax said, “X amount to fund elementary music”, what would be an example of a goal?

  150. wdf

    A few observations.. said…
    If there is a Parcel Tax:

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    How do you do that?

    Is there a current example to follow somewhere?

    Also, the tax should be goals oriented.

    What’s an example of this?

    If an item on the parcel tax said, “X amount to fund elementary music”, what would be an example of a goal?

  151. wdf

    A few observations.. said…
    If there is a Parcel Tax:

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    How do you do that?

    Is there a current example to follow somewhere?

    Also, the tax should be goals oriented.

    What’s an example of this?

    If an item on the parcel tax said, “X amount to fund elementary music”, what would be an example of a goal?

  152. wdf

    A few observations.. said…
    If there is a Parcel Tax:

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    How do you do that?

    Is there a current example to follow somewhere?

    Also, the tax should be goals oriented.

    What’s an example of this?

    If an item on the parcel tax said, “X amount to fund elementary music”, what would be an example of a goal?

  153. wdf

    The poll was conducted the week after school ended, both at DJUSD and UCD. Is there any idea how that skews results?

    Likely UCD students would be under-represented in the poll.

  154. wdf

    The poll was conducted the week after school ended, both at DJUSD and UCD. Is there any idea how that skews results?

    Likely UCD students would be under-represented in the poll.

  155. wdf

    The poll was conducted the week after school ended, both at DJUSD and UCD. Is there any idea how that skews results?

    Likely UCD students would be under-represented in the poll.

  156. wdf

    The poll was conducted the week after school ended, both at DJUSD and UCD. Is there any idea how that skews results?

    Likely UCD students would be under-represented in the poll.

  157. Shame

    “wdf said…
    The poll was conducted the week after school ended, both at DJUSD and UCD. Is there any idea how that skews results?”

    You mean you are not willing to accept the fact that the public is fed up with the School Board’s fiscal mismanagement, and actually wants accountability or no dice on another parcel tax? Shame on you!

  158. Shame

    “wdf said…
    The poll was conducted the week after school ended, both at DJUSD and UCD. Is there any idea how that skews results?”

    You mean you are not willing to accept the fact that the public is fed up with the School Board’s fiscal mismanagement, and actually wants accountability or no dice on another parcel tax? Shame on you!

  159. Shame

    “wdf said…
    The poll was conducted the week after school ended, both at DJUSD and UCD. Is there any idea how that skews results?”

    You mean you are not willing to accept the fact that the public is fed up with the School Board’s fiscal mismanagement, and actually wants accountability or no dice on another parcel tax? Shame on you!

  160. Shame

    “wdf said…
    The poll was conducted the week after school ended, both at DJUSD and UCD. Is there any idea how that skews results?”

    You mean you are not willing to accept the fact that the public is fed up with the School Board’s fiscal mismanagement, and actually wants accountability or no dice on another parcel tax? Shame on you!

  161. wdf

    You mean you are not willing to accept the fact that the public is fed up with the School Board’s fiscal mismanagement, and actually wants accountability or no dice on another parcel tax? Shame on you!

    Is it possible to have a civil discussion and exchange of information here without being so quick to rip on people?

    I actually had no agenda in mind when I asked the question. I read through the DPD’s and Jeff Hudon’s articles and the thought occurred to me. It may or may not be meaningless, but I was just curious.

  162. wdf

    You mean you are not willing to accept the fact that the public is fed up with the School Board’s fiscal mismanagement, and actually wants accountability or no dice on another parcel tax? Shame on you!

    Is it possible to have a civil discussion and exchange of information here without being so quick to rip on people?

    I actually had no agenda in mind when I asked the question. I read through the DPD’s and Jeff Hudon’s articles and the thought occurred to me. It may or may not be meaningless, but I was just curious.

  163. wdf

    You mean you are not willing to accept the fact that the public is fed up with the School Board’s fiscal mismanagement, and actually wants accountability or no dice on another parcel tax? Shame on you!

    Is it possible to have a civil discussion and exchange of information here without being so quick to rip on people?

    I actually had no agenda in mind when I asked the question. I read through the DPD’s and Jeff Hudon’s articles and the thought occurred to me. It may or may not be meaningless, but I was just curious.

  164. wdf

    You mean you are not willing to accept the fact that the public is fed up with the School Board’s fiscal mismanagement, and actually wants accountability or no dice on another parcel tax? Shame on you!

    Is it possible to have a civil discussion and exchange of information here without being so quick to rip on people?

    I actually had no agenda in mind when I asked the question. I read through the DPD’s and Jeff Hudon’s articles and the thought occurred to me. It may or may not be meaningless, but I was just curious.

  165. accountability

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    So you want to have elections for a parcel tax oversight committee? That seems overboard.

    What about an independent professional auditor?

  166. accountability

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    So you want to have elections for a parcel tax oversight committee? That seems overboard.

    What about an independent professional auditor?

  167. accountability

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    So you want to have elections for a parcel tax oversight committee? That seems overboard.

    What about an independent professional auditor?

  168. accountability

    Accountability: If there is an oversight committee it better be one that is voted on and chosen by the voters. None of these in-house rubberstamp James Hammond types. It must be completely seperate from the school board.

    So you want to have elections for a parcel tax oversight committee? That seems overboard.

    What about an independent professional auditor?

  169. Anonymous

    WDF,

    how many more parcel taxes do you think people can afford? We just passed one. Now we do another.

    In the midst of all of this are gas prices, water/sewer fee increases, and a slumping economy.

  170. Anonymous

    WDF,

    how many more parcel taxes do you think people can afford? We just passed one. Now we do another.

    In the midst of all of this are gas prices, water/sewer fee increases, and a slumping economy.

  171. Anonymous

    WDF,

    how many more parcel taxes do you think people can afford? We just passed one. Now we do another.

    In the midst of all of this are gas prices, water/sewer fee increases, and a slumping economy.

  172. Anonymous

    WDF,

    how many more parcel taxes do you think people can afford? We just passed one. Now we do another.

    In the midst of all of this are gas prices, water/sewer fee increases, and a slumping economy.

  173. Voters decide

    “So you want to have elections for a parcel tax oversight committee? That seems overboard.

    What about an independent professional auditor?”

    An independent professional auditor chosen and elected by the voters, might work (might is the key word here) but the voters must have a say in this. This is to ensure there is no in-house rubber stamping.

    thank you.

  174. Voters decide

    “So you want to have elections for a parcel tax oversight committee? That seems overboard.

    What about an independent professional auditor?”

    An independent professional auditor chosen and elected by the voters, might work (might is the key word here) but the voters must have a say in this. This is to ensure there is no in-house rubber stamping.

    thank you.

  175. Voters decide

    “So you want to have elections for a parcel tax oversight committee? That seems overboard.

    What about an independent professional auditor?”

    An independent professional auditor chosen and elected by the voters, might work (might is the key word here) but the voters must have a say in this. This is to ensure there is no in-house rubber stamping.

    thank you.

  176. Voters decide

    “So you want to have elections for a parcel tax oversight committee? That seems overboard.

    What about an independent professional auditor?”

    An independent professional auditor chosen and elected by the voters, might work (might is the key word here) but the voters must have a say in this. This is to ensure there is no in-house rubber stamping.

    thank you.

  177. Doug Paul Davis

    It strikes me that we already have an independent body elected by the voters to determine these issues–it’s called the school board.

  178. Doug Paul Davis

    It strikes me that we already have an independent body elected by the voters to determine these issues–it’s called the school board.

  179. Doug Paul Davis

    It strikes me that we already have an independent body elected by the voters to determine these issues–it’s called the school board.

  180. Doug Paul Davis

    It strikes me that we already have an independent body elected by the voters to determine these issues–it’s called the school board.

  181. sorry

    It strikes me that we already have an independent body elected by the voters to determine these issues–it’s called the school board.

    A school board which does clearly does not plan to operate within its budget like the rest of us.

    A school board who wasn’t upfront with the voters about their intentions to close emerson/valley oak.

    If they plan to ask us for more $ every year and not operate within a budget, then the people who are going to shell out more $ should control more of the purse strings.

    The school board should be required to prove the $ is well spent.

  182. sorry

    It strikes me that we already have an independent body elected by the voters to determine these issues–it’s called the school board.

    A school board which does clearly does not plan to operate within its budget like the rest of us.

    A school board who wasn’t upfront with the voters about their intentions to close emerson/valley oak.

    If they plan to ask us for more $ every year and not operate within a budget, then the people who are going to shell out more $ should control more of the purse strings.

    The school board should be required to prove the $ is well spent.

  183. sorry

    It strikes me that we already have an independent body elected by the voters to determine these issues–it’s called the school board.

    A school board which does clearly does not plan to operate within its budget like the rest of us.

    A school board who wasn’t upfront with the voters about their intentions to close emerson/valley oak.

    If they plan to ask us for more $ every year and not operate within a budget, then the people who are going to shell out more $ should control more of the purse strings.

    The school board should be required to prove the $ is well spent.

  184. sorry

    It strikes me that we already have an independent body elected by the voters to determine these issues–it’s called the school board.

    A school board which does clearly does not plan to operate within its budget like the rest of us.

    A school board who wasn’t upfront with the voters about their intentions to close emerson/valley oak.

    If they plan to ask us for more $ every year and not operate within a budget, then the people who are going to shell out more $ should control more of the purse strings.

    The school board should be required to prove the $ is well spent.

  185. Doug Paul Davis

    People have plenty of recourse if what you say is true. They can recall the board or they can wait until next election, next year when three will be up, and vote them out. That’s plenty of accountability. I don’t see any need to introduce another elected body to do ostensibly the same work. Who’s to say the voters will do anything different for that board.

  186. Doug Paul Davis

    People have plenty of recourse if what you say is true. They can recall the board or they can wait until next election, next year when three will be up, and vote them out. That’s plenty of accountability. I don’t see any need to introduce another elected body to do ostensibly the same work. Who’s to say the voters will do anything different for that board.

  187. Doug Paul Davis

    People have plenty of recourse if what you say is true. They can recall the board or they can wait until next election, next year when three will be up, and vote them out. That’s plenty of accountability. I don’t see any need to introduce another elected body to do ostensibly the same work. Who’s to say the voters will do anything different for that board.

  188. Doug Paul Davis

    People have plenty of recourse if what you say is true. They can recall the board or they can wait until next election, next year when three will be up, and vote them out. That’s plenty of accountability. I don’t see any need to introduce another elected body to do ostensibly the same work. Who’s to say the voters will do anything different for that board.

  189. To WDF, DPD

    If the board gets its way, and another parcel tax happens, where is the incentive for them to make sure they do budget prioritizing to be within their means?

    They will always be able to count on additional tax $- this is what people have referred to as a blank check.

    blank checks do not yield good results, just the opposite

  190. To WDF, DPD

    If the board gets its way, and another parcel tax happens, where is the incentive for them to make sure they do budget prioritizing to be within their means?

    They will always be able to count on additional tax $- this is what people have referred to as a blank check.

    blank checks do not yield good results, just the opposite

  191. To WDF, DPD

    If the board gets its way, and another parcel tax happens, where is the incentive for them to make sure they do budget prioritizing to be within their means?

    They will always be able to count on additional tax $- this is what people have referred to as a blank check.

    blank checks do not yield good results, just the opposite

  192. To WDF, DPD

    If the board gets its way, and another parcel tax happens, where is the incentive for them to make sure they do budget prioritizing to be within their means?

    They will always be able to count on additional tax $- this is what people have referred to as a blank check.

    blank checks do not yield good results, just the opposite

  193. Doug Paul Davis

    And that’s another point, two-thirds of the voters have to approve this for it to pass. They are going to have to make a case during a very heavy turnout election. I don’t think this is a foregone conclusion. I do know at the meeting on Monday, the message was delivered to them loud and clear about the issue of accountability.

    There will be a sunset on this parcel tax as there is on the other. So they do not get to always count on it.

    All of this suggests that the public if they are concerned need to pay attention. Honestly, I don’t think this particular board has been irresponsible, in fact I thought they did a reasonable job of handling a very tough six month period.

    I actually think they are making a mistake trying to pass this now, I think it’s a tough sell. We’ll have to see.

  194. Doug Paul Davis

    And that’s another point, two-thirds of the voters have to approve this for it to pass. They are going to have to make a case during a very heavy turnout election. I don’t think this is a foregone conclusion. I do know at the meeting on Monday, the message was delivered to them loud and clear about the issue of accountability.

    There will be a sunset on this parcel tax as there is on the other. So they do not get to always count on it.

    All of this suggests that the public if they are concerned need to pay attention. Honestly, I don’t think this particular board has been irresponsible, in fact I thought they did a reasonable job of handling a very tough six month period.

    I actually think they are making a mistake trying to pass this now, I think it’s a tough sell. We’ll have to see.

  195. Doug Paul Davis

    And that’s another point, two-thirds of the voters have to approve this for it to pass. They are going to have to make a case during a very heavy turnout election. I don’t think this is a foregone conclusion. I do know at the meeting on Monday, the message was delivered to them loud and clear about the issue of accountability.

    There will be a sunset on this parcel tax as there is on the other. So they do not get to always count on it.

    All of this suggests that the public if they are concerned need to pay attention. Honestly, I don’t think this particular board has been irresponsible, in fact I thought they did a reasonable job of handling a very tough six month period.

    I actually think they are making a mistake trying to pass this now, I think it’s a tough sell. We’ll have to see.

  196. Doug Paul Davis

    And that’s another point, two-thirds of the voters have to approve this for it to pass. They are going to have to make a case during a very heavy turnout election. I don’t think this is a foregone conclusion. I do know at the meeting on Monday, the message was delivered to them loud and clear about the issue of accountability.

    There will be a sunset on this parcel tax as there is on the other. So they do not get to always count on it.

    All of this suggests that the public if they are concerned need to pay attention. Honestly, I don’t think this particular board has been irresponsible, in fact I thought they did a reasonable job of handling a very tough six month period.

    I actually think they are making a mistake trying to pass this now, I think it’s a tough sell. We’ll have to see.

  197. Give Me A Break

    “All of this suggests that the public if they are concerned need to pay attention. Honestly, I don’t think this particular board has been irresponsible, in fact I thought they did a reasonable job of handling a very tough six month period.”

    The current Board closed Valley Oak, nearly closed Emerson. This is the same Board that stuck their finger in the wind and asked “how much can we soak the taxpayers for” – instead of telling us exactly how much is needed for what. Example: How much will it cost the taxpayer minimally in a parcel tax to keep Emerson open according to state law? Not how much will it cost to refurbish the entire school with a fancy wish list – but de minimus funding to keep it running without running afoul of the law? Remember, the School Board said they would save $600,000 if they closed Emerson, then morphed it into a claim that $16 million would be needed to bring Emerson “up to code”. The two don’t jibe – what one absolutely needs and what one would like to have are two entirely different animals.

  198. Give Me A Break

    “All of this suggests that the public if they are concerned need to pay attention. Honestly, I don’t think this particular board has been irresponsible, in fact I thought they did a reasonable job of handling a very tough six month period.”

    The current Board closed Valley Oak, nearly closed Emerson. This is the same Board that stuck their finger in the wind and asked “how much can we soak the taxpayers for” – instead of telling us exactly how much is needed for what. Example: How much will it cost the taxpayer minimally in a parcel tax to keep Emerson open according to state law? Not how much will it cost to refurbish the entire school with a fancy wish list – but de minimus funding to keep it running without running afoul of the law? Remember, the School Board said they would save $600,000 if they closed Emerson, then morphed it into a claim that $16 million would be needed to bring Emerson “up to code”. The two don’t jibe – what one absolutely needs and what one would like to have are two entirely different animals.

  199. Give Me A Break

    “All of this suggests that the public if they are concerned need to pay attention. Honestly, I don’t think this particular board has been irresponsible, in fact I thought they did a reasonable job of handling a very tough six month period.”

    The current Board closed Valley Oak, nearly closed Emerson. This is the same Board that stuck their finger in the wind and asked “how much can we soak the taxpayers for” – instead of telling us exactly how much is needed for what. Example: How much will it cost the taxpayer minimally in a parcel tax to keep Emerson open according to state law? Not how much will it cost to refurbish the entire school with a fancy wish list – but de minimus funding to keep it running without running afoul of the law? Remember, the School Board said they would save $600,000 if they closed Emerson, then morphed it into a claim that $16 million would be needed to bring Emerson “up to code”. The two don’t jibe – what one absolutely needs and what one would like to have are two entirely different animals.

  200. Give Me A Break

    “All of this suggests that the public if they are concerned need to pay attention. Honestly, I don’t think this particular board has been irresponsible, in fact I thought they did a reasonable job of handling a very tough six month period.”

    The current Board closed Valley Oak, nearly closed Emerson. This is the same Board that stuck their finger in the wind and asked “how much can we soak the taxpayers for” – instead of telling us exactly how much is needed for what. Example: How much will it cost the taxpayer minimally in a parcel tax to keep Emerson open according to state law? Not how much will it cost to refurbish the entire school with a fancy wish list – but de minimus funding to keep it running without running afoul of the law? Remember, the School Board said they would save $600,000 if they closed Emerson, then morphed it into a claim that $16 million would be needed to bring Emerson “up to code”. The two don’t jibe – what one absolutely needs and what one would like to have are two entirely different animals.

  201. Doug Paul Davis

    All of which gets back to the point–vote them out. If the public doesn’t there is nothing you can do. None of this is out of the hands of the public–the make up of the school board and the passage of the parcel tax.

  202. Doug Paul Davis

    All of which gets back to the point–vote them out. If the public doesn’t there is nothing you can do. None of this is out of the hands of the public–the make up of the school board and the passage of the parcel tax.

  203. Doug Paul Davis

    All of which gets back to the point–vote them out. If the public doesn’t there is nothing you can do. None of this is out of the hands of the public–the make up of the school board and the passage of the parcel tax.

  204. Doug Paul Davis

    All of which gets back to the point–vote them out. If the public doesn’t there is nothing you can do. None of this is out of the hands of the public–the make up of the school board and the passage of the parcel tax.

  205. Give Me A Break

    ” Doug Paul Davis said…
    All of which gets back to the point–vote them out. If the public doesn’t there is nothing you can do. None of this is out of the hands of the public–the make up of the school board and the passage of the parcel tax.

    6/28/08 2:29 PM”

    I respectfully disagree with you that nothing can be done beyond voting the current School Board out or to categorically vote against the parcel tax. As John Munn put it, the public should hold itself ambivalent until it sees some actual figures on what the needs are and how will the parcel tax specifically address those needs.

    What your blog is achieving is the hope that it will alert the current School Board what it has to do in order to get a parcel tax passed. The problem is, that so far, they are not listening. But there is still time to try and get through to them.

    The Emerson question should be topmost on their list, since it is slated for the chopping block. The public is waiting for an answer to the questions I posed…

    If the School Board has already made up its mind to close Emerson, then the School Board needs to be up front about it. If Emerson is going to close anyway, why should taxpayers pay for the privilege of another closure? Instead, lets let the chips fall where they may, close Emerson, and try opening both VO and Emerson as charter schools. The charter school option is looking better and better. It seems, so far, as the only way to effect true reform of a broken system.

    If I were asked today, I would vote no on a parcel tax. If I were convinced otherwise by honest conversation, and some accountability as Munn suggested, perhaps I might change my mind. The ball is in the School Board/District’s court…

  206. Give Me A Break

    ” Doug Paul Davis said…
    All of which gets back to the point–vote them out. If the public doesn’t there is nothing you can do. None of this is out of the hands of the public–the make up of the school board and the passage of the parcel tax.

    6/28/08 2:29 PM”

    I respectfully disagree with you that nothing can be done beyond voting the current School Board out or to categorically vote against the parcel tax. As John Munn put it, the public should hold itself ambivalent until it sees some actual figures on what the needs are and how will the parcel tax specifically address those needs.

    What your blog is achieving is the hope that it will alert the current School Board what it has to do in order to get a parcel tax passed. The problem is, that so far, they are not listening. But there is still time to try and get through to them.

    The Emerson question should be topmost on their list, since it is slated for the chopping block. The public is waiting for an answer to the questions I posed…

    If the School Board has already made up its mind to close Emerson, then the School Board needs to be up front about it. If Emerson is going to close anyway, why should taxpayers pay for the privilege of another closure? Instead, lets let the chips fall where they may, close Emerson, and try opening both VO and Emerson as charter schools. The charter school option is looking better and better. It seems, so far, as the only way to effect true reform of a broken system.

    If I were asked today, I would vote no on a parcel tax. If I were convinced otherwise by honest conversation, and some accountability as Munn suggested, perhaps I might change my mind. The ball is in the School Board/District’s court…

  207. Give Me A Break

    ” Doug Paul Davis said…
    All of which gets back to the point–vote them out. If the public doesn’t there is nothing you can do. None of this is out of the hands of the public–the make up of the school board and the passage of the parcel tax.

    6/28/08 2:29 PM”

    I respectfully disagree with you that nothing can be done beyond voting the current School Board out or to categorically vote against the parcel tax. As John Munn put it, the public should hold itself ambivalent until it sees some actual figures on what the needs are and how will the parcel tax specifically address those needs.

    What your blog is achieving is the hope that it will alert the current School Board what it has to do in order to get a parcel tax passed. The problem is, that so far, they are not listening. But there is still time to try and get through to them.

    The Emerson question should be topmost on their list, since it is slated for the chopping block. The public is waiting for an answer to the questions I posed…

    If the School Board has already made up its mind to close Emerson, then the School Board needs to be up front about it. If Emerson is going to close anyway, why should taxpayers pay for the privilege of another closure? Instead, lets let the chips fall where they may, close Emerson, and try opening both VO and Emerson as charter schools. The charter school option is looking better and better. It seems, so far, as the only way to effect true reform of a broken system.

    If I were asked today, I would vote no on a parcel tax. If I were convinced otherwise by honest conversation, and some accountability as Munn suggested, perhaps I might change my mind. The ball is in the School Board/District’s court…

  208. Give Me A Break

    ” Doug Paul Davis said…
    All of which gets back to the point–vote them out. If the public doesn’t there is nothing you can do. None of this is out of the hands of the public–the make up of the school board and the passage of the parcel tax.

    6/28/08 2:29 PM”

    I respectfully disagree with you that nothing can be done beyond voting the current School Board out or to categorically vote against the parcel tax. As John Munn put it, the public should hold itself ambivalent until it sees some actual figures on what the needs are and how will the parcel tax specifically address those needs.

    What your blog is achieving is the hope that it will alert the current School Board what it has to do in order to get a parcel tax passed. The problem is, that so far, they are not listening. But there is still time to try and get through to them.

    The Emerson question should be topmost on their list, since it is slated for the chopping block. The public is waiting for an answer to the questions I posed…

    If the School Board has already made up its mind to close Emerson, then the School Board needs to be up front about it. If Emerson is going to close anyway, why should taxpayers pay for the privilege of another closure? Instead, lets let the chips fall where they may, close Emerson, and try opening both VO and Emerson as charter schools. The charter school option is looking better and better. It seems, so far, as the only way to effect true reform of a broken system.

    If I were asked today, I would vote no on a parcel tax. If I were convinced otherwise by honest conversation, and some accountability as Munn suggested, perhaps I might change my mind. The ball is in the School Board/District’s court…

  209. financial sense

    Why do you think that keeping Emerson open is so worthwhile in these times? If the district can save $600,000 per year by closing a school, then I would be more interested in helping to make up the difference in a parcel tax. What’s more valuable to you? The teachers or the building? Better to close a school than lay off teachers.

  210. financial sense

    Why do you think that keeping Emerson open is so worthwhile in these times? If the district can save $600,000 per year by closing a school, then I would be more interested in helping to make up the difference in a parcel tax. What’s more valuable to you? The teachers or the building? Better to close a school than lay off teachers.

  211. financial sense

    Why do you think that keeping Emerson open is so worthwhile in these times? If the district can save $600,000 per year by closing a school, then I would be more interested in helping to make up the difference in a parcel tax. What’s more valuable to you? The teachers or the building? Better to close a school than lay off teachers.

  212. financial sense

    Why do you think that keeping Emerson open is so worthwhile in these times? If the district can save $600,000 per year by closing a school, then I would be more interested in helping to make up the difference in a parcel tax. What’s more valuable to you? The teachers or the building? Better to close a school than lay off teachers.

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