Friday, June 05, 2009

June 5, 2009 Instead of Making Other Cuts, School Board Makes Raises the Issue

The Hamblen County School Board did little cutting to its original budget at a meeting on Wednesday, June 3.

Based on the report in Thursday's Tribune, it appears that all the School Board and Director Lynch did at the meeting was political posturing while ranting and raving at the county commission for the impact of the current economic situation.

[If you click on the Tribune link above, you might or might not see the article. Unlike the Knox News-Sentinel and many other papers with an on-line presence, the Tribune doesn't leave its online "news" available for very long.]

Instead of making real cuts, the school board apparently pulled money from its fund balance to pay for busses that were included in the original budget and then said we'll send it all back to county commission and let them tell our employees that the commission won't fund the approximate $400,000 or so that we are still out of balance.

The School Board is trying to say that it's the commission that is trying to "make" the school board cut raises out of the school budget.

Some commissioners may have suggested that particular cut, but the school board was never required to make that cut. The School Board can make cuts wherever it wants or--as it did on Wednesday--it can simply pull from fund balance to pay for its full budgetary desires and present that revised budget to commission.

The School Board is so out-of-touch with reality that it is pathetic.

Reality: In another front page article on Thursday, the headline was "Vacumet announces closing" with 103 people losing jobs.

Reality: In the classifieds on Thursday. there were about 12 (twelve!) foreclosure notices.

Maybe Dr, Lynch and the School Board don't see or feel the problems of others. Many people in Hamblen and across the state are hurting, losing jobs, losing homes, losing insurance, and losing all benefits, or just managing to keep jobs but getting no raises and often losing or having to pay a larger portion of their insurance coverage.

School Board member Jim Grigsby talked about letting commission "tell our employees they can't have a raise."

School Board member Clyde Kinder said, "I don't think we need to balance the budget on the backs of our custodians and bus drivers."

If the School Board wants to give a raise, it can pull from fund balance (which is NOT a good idea) or it can make cuts ELSEWHERE and leave the raises in.

It is pathetic and typical school board posturing to set this up as though the commission is taking away raises.

1 comment:

Tim N said...

Beginning to look like an independent elected school superintendent would better serve the tax payer.