On Nov. 2, the citizens who are residents of Community Consolidated School District 15 will be voting on whether or not the district should borrow $27 million. I, for one, will be voting no on that issue.
Public officials, to be effective, need to be trusted and have the confidence of those they represent. This Board of Education failed to achieve either when they attempted the "back door referendum" (essentially bypassing community taxpayers) method of issuing the bonds. Secondly, whether we want to admit it or not, operating our schools is still a business, the product being a well-educated young person, and with CCSD-15 collecting and spending over $150 million taxpayer dollars each year. That the board would ask for $27 million without having published a plan or rationale for the request just defies common sense and good management practice.
If any one of us in the private sector requested a like sum from stockholders or senior management without a business plan, we probably would have shortly been among the ranks of the unemployed (a subtle hint to voters here?). While the public belatedly saw a "plan," that it took a petition drive to provoke the gestation of such a "plan" speaks volumes about the level of competence, and some would say the arrogance, of the current board and administration.
The board's lack of transparency, woefully deficient communications skills and demonstrated lack of fiscal responsibility are sufficiently good reasons for members of the community to at this time deny their request to take on $27 million in additional debt and the increased taxes that go along with the debt!
Joe H. Heater