Making a Virtue of Ignorance

In a very worrying turn of events, your school budget committee voted almost unanimously last night to ask the administration to return with a 2% budget increase for discussion at their next and likely last meeting. If this budget ultimately passes, it has the potential of giving Sandown yet another 10% school tax increase next year. The school budget committee has no idea how small budgetary increases with falling enrollment skyrockets town taxes. Mr. Stokinger knows, but remains silent about this at meetings.

Last night’s joint meeting of the school budget committee and school board was interesting if not overtly productive.  I appreciated being able to address the budget committee to let them know of my particular insights into the Capital Improvement Plan process and salaries.

This year the budget committee must be given credit for demanding full-time kindergarten costing information and insisting on some understanding of staffing levels – neither of which they’ve received yet – with one meeting to go before the budget is typically approved.

This year the budget committee is made up of many inexperienced members.  It’s a fact through no fault of their own but due to inexperience and  an administration that likes to keep them in the dark, that they do not know what they do not know.  Chairman Mr. Dube seems intent on keeping it that way and lecturing in an insulting fashion those who might try to lift the veil of darkness from their eyes.

Watch the meeting where I try to explain to Budcom that there is a way of hiding a lot of money in salaries when losing many experienced teachers, which we have, and replacing them with lower paid teachers yet continuing to budget as though we had all those higher paid teachers. Mr. Dube cut me off while I was trying to explain a concept that has NEVER been discussed at budget committee in living memory.  It’s an entirely new concept, and a difficult one without understanding how the teachers’ contract works, which I did not when I was on Budcom.

Watch Mr. Dube insist his committee stay uninformed while speaking to me in an unjustified and insulting manner. Mr. Dube is my Sandown representative on the budget committee.  Of all people, he should be fighting for my right to speak at meetings he chairs.

Dube keeps blinders on budcom

have just been feted by captains of New Hampshire business and luminaries in the legal community for my NH Supreme Court victory, but no one on the budget committee has the slightest interest in learning why I went all the way to the state’s top court at my own considerable expense to obtain salary information in a usable format – nor have they requested the same.  Now why is that?

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