Saturday, September 09, 2006

Roseville School Levy Baffles With Baloney Sausage

Hi All!

I should put a thousand words of disclaimer and caveats on this, but I would still get in trouble anyway. So what the hey.

From the first I heard of the new 7-year levy for Roseville School District 623 my cynicism, well honed by experience, kicked in big-time.

The levy will be snuck past under our noses on the PRIMARY ballot next Tuesday. That is but the very first sign of trouble. Quite disingenuous, or not, depending on the motive.

After a summer of flying under the radar screen, the imperial powers at B-2 Headquarters offered we poor taxpayers, worn out from Labor Day Weekend and catching back up at work, a "Hearing."

As I adjudged by the coverage in the Roseville Review containing some incredibly arrogant-sounding quotes from those at the tippy top of the top-heavy school administration, we were being granted a great favor for the opportunity to waste a perfectly nice evening beating our heads against a wall and suffer condescending scolding for being nasty, uncaring cheapskates who don't care about kids.

I wanted to go. I should have gone. I even came home from a trip earlier than needed with a mind to put in the useless effort. As I dined at my Legion club and enjoyed the company of our seasoned citizen patriots, I decided to let it go. I was glad I did at the time, but not anymore.

A nice young lady dropped off a flyer about an hour ago in support of the levy. That was the last straw. With perhaps 20% of registered voters showing up next Tuesday, of which perhaps 10% are informed about it, the levy is a slam dunk. A fait accompli.

Why a lit drop was needed is beyond my understanding. If anything, it will rile a few people up, present company included.

My three kids went through the Roseville Schools from K-8. My saintly wife has worked for the District for 10 years in a very tough job at very poor pay, albeit with blessedly generous health benefits.

The thing with me is, that I need to speak out when I see that need.

I intend to take the argument for this levy apart piece by piece, but I didn't go to the hearing and I haven't visited The Superintendent's Office, so I will be happy to admit I am wrong, but the contrary evidence is, well, very evident.

There is a Ten Fast Facts web page, a masterpiece of dissemblation which cries out for critical picking apart, but that will take much work and research to get my counterpoints straight.

However, the brochure in front of me is easy pickings.

It's a load of propaganda, of course, but that's to be expected if you are making a case for your cause. What gets under my skin are a couple of observations that are not all that obvious.

The banner in the fold-out cheers, "More Money for Classrooms, with No New Taxes."

Well, technically, a new 7-year tax levy is a new tax on the very face of it. But I split hairs.

The piece was prepared and paid for by the "Commitment to Community Committee." which does not seem to be registered with the Finance and Disclosure Board so there is no way to find out how the brochure was prepared and paid for. You won't find any evidence of it on the web, either.

The "convenient" internet link provided is:


Whew! A person could get repetitive stress syndrome from THAT one!

I've already saved you the time with the above hot-link so save yourself the trouble. The way I got there was by Googling "Ehlers Roseville Levy" Still too many keystrokes but I wasn't trying to be 100% efficient.

Bottom line on this brilliant smoke and mirrors levy is that somehow Peter will rob Paul to replace the still-in-force existing levy with an extra $2.1 million at no additional cost to the property over-taxed payers.

Just click your heels three times...

Well, since it will be a done deal, all one can do is follow up and compare the seemingly false promises to what is actually delivered in the next 7 years -- unless we need to replace THIS one after a few.



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