Questions abound on charter school
Regarding decisions made at a special session of Elgin City Council on the renting of property to a proposed charter school, here are a few further questions the March 2 Daily Herald report raises:
How will Elgin cover the close to $2 million this decision will cost the city over the next decade, given that the council's end of the bargain will cost close to $3 million while the charter will only pay $1.1 million in rent over 10 years, according to the figures reported by the newspaper?
For how many years will Elgin and its taxpayers be expected to fund this charter?
What city services will be cut because of this decision? If city services are cut, how will the council and city managers decide what services to cut in order to fund a charter to the tune of some $200,000 or more per year, according to the figures in the news report?
How will the charter pay its rent? Will it come out of fees paid by students? Or does the charter board expect to get this money from the U-46 School District? If so, what school district services will be cut to pay up to $115,000 annually for charter rent?
If the figures reported in the Herald are correct, it appears that there is an ethical conflict of interest by three council members who either personally sit on or have immediate family members on the board of Elgin Charter School Initiative. It seems improper for them to vote on this matter.
Does the city council have standards in place to recuse council members in the event of a conflict of interest? If so, how could such standards not cover this situation?
Fox Valley Citizens for Peace & Justice