What a mess.
I’m serious when I say that. I’m sad. I’m angry. I’m confused on some of the “how’s” and “why’s” when it comes to the 15+ million School Bond Shortfall. Here are some of the thoughts I had initially…
“I am mad at the School Board and Superintendent and they don’t deserve my vote.” Well….
I thought it was very wise to create a citizen’s group to look at the needs of each school, and thought they did a fantastic job putting together a good list of needs. What I didn’t understand is why in the world we didn’t have an accurate bid on the projects! Then, I came to find out there is no money to pay for the full blown plans before a bond is passed (it’s 100’s of thousands) so there was no way that was possible. None.
Voting “NO” is a short-sighted way to deal with this issue. This mistake has put the Board and Superintendent in a position to know what to fix and more importantly they want to make it right. They have been 100% honest when they could have started the projects and forced the bond or leave projects undone.
Blocking the additional needed funds by voting “No” until new candidates run or get appointed means we would have a new board and administration that wouldn’t have the experience to move forward. Nor would they have the same level of hunger & drive to see this fixed. More importantly, a “No” vote punishes the wrong people. It punished my kids, and your kids. Not the board and Superintendent. From personally serving on boards myself, I can say with ease that it is more of a punishment to stay on and clean up, than to step down.
You can still be mad and vote “Yes”.
“Why should I pay more because someone else messed up with the budget?” Hmmm….
Yes, the budget was underestimated. Bad advice was given to keep costs down. It happened and here we are. The fact is we can pay for the facilities now (before we have to try and keep our buildings functioning with duct tape) or we can pay later when there are rising building cost and too many children in too little space. The needs don’t go away. The growth is not coming in the far future, it’s already here. A recent report showed that enrollment at white pine is up to 863 from 720 over the course of 10 years. With every 30+ children comes a new classroom needed unless we want to change our mascots from Bobcats or Hornets to Sardines.
I had a humbling experience of my own this past year.
My business is facing the same challenges of our schools. Growth. So, I spent this last year looking for a new place to move and settled on the old Ed’s Office Building. I planned out the budget it would take to buy, and renovate the building. I started, then we tore down the ceiling and realized there was another ceiling and that there was fire damage in the rafters. We also realized there was no insulation between the ceiling and the roof. The floor had to be grinded due to how awesome the 1950’s glue was, and the list went on and on of unexpected costs. Before long I came to realize that I underestimated the cost of the renovation by almost 35%. I had people come and quote before we started. I was extremely thorough with what I had access to in my inspection process. Yet, there I was in the middle of a project needing more money to do what needed to be done.
Welcome to life. It happens. It’s not how you avoid issues. It’s how you deal with them when they arise.
Give me one non-selfish or non-hateful reason to vote “no” on the School Bond.
Every time, I try to make a list of reasons to vote “no” the list becomes about my money or my feelings or my smarts compared to someone else. Me, Me, Me, My, My, My. One of the reasons I chose to live in Cassia County is because I grew up around people that put “we” above “me”. My family taught me that time and time again. My church taught me that. Heck, even my teachers at Burley High School taught me that when they sacrificed time, energy, and talents to help a little after school, or put a little extra polish into a play or music performance. Is a few dollars a year (more) that the bond will cost residents truly worth the fuss? My guess (looking into the future) is that if we continually shut down school bonds the district will eventually be forced to consolidate schools and raise # of students in classrooms which is a bad idea. That means no more Oakley or Raft River. I know that it not what is wanted by the majority, but a “no” vote creates a slippery slope that leads to desperate future measures to cut costs.
These are the reasons I decided to vote “Yes” for the School bond on Tuesday, March 8th. If you need more just look at this information on the Districts website. Also, you can look at this well crafted article by Jay Lenkersdorfer who I have had my fair share of differences with, but understands the needs and the facts of this situation.
I think it is going to be a hard thing to pass this bond with a super majority. Please SHARE (don’t just like) this post on Facebook and grab a few friends to go vote “YES”!