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Letter: Defeat the Repeat

I attended yet another BOE Budget meeting, the usual suspects were in attendance. Couldn’t see where the PTA members were hiding their pom-poms. However, in a $90 million budget, they really sharpened those pencils and found a whooping $284,000 in additional savings. Later, we were regaled about the marvelous achievements our students were making on the state tests. Little mention was made of the dumbing down of those same tests by the education bureaucracy so that they look good. Much effort went into this presentation, they really earned my vote. Not!

Of course, the board and administration would never show the citizenry what savings that could be achieved by freezing the union salaries.  Nor, did they show us what additional savings that could be achieved by increasing the health care contributions from 15 percent individual 25 percent family to say 30 percent; individual/40 percent family, while eliminating all village contributions for vision/dental. They should try getting in line with the private sector, otherwise known as reality. Wage cuts, not freezes, across the board are the norm and benefit contributions are more in line with my recommendations. These are called “What if Scenarios” and would allow the voters to make a more informed decision.  I do not think the education bureaucracy wants an informed electorate; more in line with their dumbing down practices!

The education bureaucracy, including the PTA, continues to threaten the parents and students with Draconian program cuts. Meanwhile, the unions go unscathed. A few FTE cuts here and there, but no significant savings and rising student/teacher ratios. Additionally, under the contingency budget, we cannot cut union wages or benefits. You can see how the unions have corrupted our elected officials.

It is time for the taxpayers to break the stranglehold of this education bureaucracy and let them know we, not the unions, not the administration, not an ineffectual board, are in charge. Tough economic times call for tough decisions, which the education bureaucracy will avoid, but the taxpaying citizens of this village must seize! Carpe diem!

Thomas P. Brosnan

Garden City