Harry Mathews of the Education Action Network has alerted me that the Gilbert Governing Board might be voting on a Tax Override tomorrow night. If you would like to speak out against it, I suggest you attend the meeting. The other option is to send the Governing Board an email as quickly as possible. Here is the email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is a link to the agenda. It will likely be part of agenda item #8.01. That’s the one you are addressing: .
The conservatives on the school board have worked extremely hard on behalf of the students, parents, and teachers. They have repeatedly held staff accountable, and they have rolled up their sleeves and examined the budget far more than any board before them. They have rewarded teachers with Prop 301 money. Instead of passing out a salary increase to staff, they decreased class sizes!
They have done this in a hostile environment. They have been greeted with chants and signs at “tailgate” parties in the school parking lot, organized by the Union. They have been jeered during school board meetings, making it necessary for security guards to be present. They have been called names on Facebook by employees who didn’t get raises. They receive nasty emails on a regular basis. A Recall petition has been organized against them.
Here is Gilbert Watch’s position on the override. Please vote NO.
The Board was able to weather Year 1 of the $6 million loss in previous override money. Year 2 will be dicey. Year 3 will be very serious. That’s when the previous override funds dwindle to $0.
Eighty percent (80%) of the school’s budget is personnel costs. My suggestion is, if the board, staff, and all the employees cannot figure out how to live within their budget, cut salaries or benefits or both.
I can hear GASPS from Board members Lily Tram and Jill Humpherys, and from the audience of mostly Gilbert staff members, and even parents.
Why the gasps?
Sometimes I think that Gilbert teachers and staff members live in a vacuum that allows them to close their eyes and ears to the economic situation of the those who pay their salaries and benefits. Aren’t we all in this together?
Do you see a light at the end of the tunnel in America? If so, please let me know where it exists.
Many Americans, including Gilbert residents, have suffered great economic losses. Many have lost jobs, homes, insurance benefits. Some have difficulty paying their property taxes, if they pay them at all. Some are glad to take a reduction in salary, if it means keeping their jobs. A salary increase doesn’t cross their minds. Their kids can’t find jobs. The latest unemployment statistic, seasonally adjusted for June 2013 is 14.3%. Has the mainstream media reported it? Maybe not, since Obama is president, not Bush.
I think about and consider these issues, because I’m an insurance broker who cancels coverage for employees whose hours have been reduced. I hear from tradesmen who cannot adhere to the myriad codes forced onto them by the Town of Gilbert and go out of business. I hear of small Gilbert businesses that cannot adhere to the many requirements imposed on them. I receive emails from readers who have no insurance at all.
These issues are of little concern to some people.
I am not one of those people.
Please vote NO to the override.