GPS’s (Sham?) Community Budget Committee

The first meeting of the Gilbert Public Schools “Community Budget Committee” is tomorrow night, 12/7/2011, at 6:30 pm. The public is invited to attend all meetings. See the schedule and the list of participants below.

So, what will be the outcome of these sessions? Ten of the 40-member committee are GPS district employees chosen by Superintendent Dave Allison. He also chose another 5. That leaves 25. Each Board member chose 5.

Perhaps 10 of the 40 will be devoted to “finding the money” that exists within the School’s budget.

Perhaps 30 of the 40 will be devoted to “finding ways to convince the public that GPS needs more money.”

What are the odds?

It’s not very clear what the Governing Board is looking for, since they unanimously justified giving salary increases to all staff last October. Dave Allison was able to "find the money" to do that (not mentioning Prop 100 money), and then a few weeks later he stated that Gilbert Public Schools continues to face "difficult budget years."

The task before the committee has been described as "helping to plan" the 2012-13 budget, "guide" the budget process, "give budget suggestions," "tackle different issues," provide "philosophical suggestions and not necessarily dollar amounts."

Meetings will be held at the Community Education Building, located at 6839 E. Guadalupe Road, Mesa 85212 (southeast corner of Guadalupe and Power Roads) from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. on the following nights:

Wed., December 7, 2011
Tues., January 17, 2012
Tues., January 31, 2012
Tues., February 7, 2012
Tues., February 21, 2012

The public is invited to attend. If you are unable to attend, the Community Budget Committee agendas and minutes will be posted on the district website.

Here are the Participants:

Angela Albers
Pamela Allara
Jason Barney
Heather Bathen
Lisa Bell
Steven Berg
Deb Carr
Morris Christensen
Eddie Cook
Kristie Cowan
Jodie Dean
Phillip Duncan
Julie Farnsworth
Ken Fetter
Gil Fidler
Joe Fraher
Michael Gallacher
Jean Gerstner
Linda Henderson
Susan Hicks
Eric Johnson
Dale Lunt
Karen Maas
Kenichi Maruyama
Mike McClellan
Julia McCleve
Soraya Medawar
Cyndi Palmer
Kristina Park
Janice Roose
Blake Sacha
Julie Smith
Shawn Tedesco
Tonya Tippetts
Kelly Townsend
Peter Vallejo
Kelly VanNatter
Michael Volk
Sonya Watkins
Anja White