Sunday, March 10, 2013
Regarding my letter to the U-B prior to the recent school bond vote. I had questions about the maintenance and operations levy, now and in the past, and why the school is not kept in a better state of repair.
At the time, I didn’t know that the M&O levy is in one lump sum, with no set percentages to either side. So, it didn`t take long to know, in my opinion, that maintenance gets the short end of the stick year after year. Hence, routine maintenance, or more serious problems, is not given the time or money for necessary repairs.
Who is to blame for that? Keeping the M&O levy devoted to operations doesn’t work. Not repairing or replacing worn out equipment doesn’t work. Not adding items like electrical outlets, wall A/C`s, sink and counter installations, etc., doesn’t work. Not replacing flooring doesn’t work.
So, who is responsible? Who is in charge of the store, so to speak?
It looks to me that the school superintendent and School Board get the prize. They decide how, and where, the M&O levy money is used. Walla Walla High School has gotten to the condition it is in under the current and past leadership. These are the people who oversee the budget.
Has anybody out there ever been aware of the sorry state the school is in, cosmetically and anything else? I, myself, paid my taxes and trusted these leaders would be responsible and do their jobs.
Where is the line by line accounting of expenses? Where is the transparency in all of this?
Do the superintendent and School Board members wonder why they are not trusted by the public? I don`t think that the public has forgotten the Edison School misuse/diversion of funds.
The School Board’s and superintendent’s promises of returning all the excess funds is laughable after Edison School. And, regarding the school bond mess, they can pad every expense, create so-called unforeseen expenses and, just like that, the excess bond money is gone.
College Place is going to have a new high school, among other things. The Walla Walla school leaders are scrambling to get a school bond in place. They know all this so-called overcrowding at the high school will no longer be a problem as the reduction in students will be in the hundreds.
In addition, Walla Walla Community College has the career and technical program and Running Start. Online classes are available.
Families are leaving Walla Walla for better employment opportunities. Another school bond? Surely you jest!