RCS CSD parent and local property owner and taxpayer Mr Laszlo Polyak takes a stand on the RCS board of education’s crazy proposals to tax the RCS community another $30 million for “capital improvements.”
It doesn’t matter to the RCS board of education, which is composed almost entirely of teachers and relatives of teachers and no representation from the rest of the community, that their insanity is beyond belief! Another $30 MILLION in addition to the more than $42 MILLION we’ve already provided for their inflated egos and salaries. How much more, we have to ask?
A Resident, Parent, Propety Owner, Taxpayer Speaks Out!
Mr Laszlo Polyak of Ravena writes:
The RCS CSD board of education has concocted two capital improvement roposals for almost 30 million dollars for the RCS schools, and are asking us to vote to approve them!
I’m not going to advise you to vote Yes or NO! on this proposal nor will I use adjectives or adverbs about the people putting this proposal together. But I will tell you why I will vote NO!
And it has nothing to do with the fact that I used to be an auditor for the State Education Department. To keep this in perspective, there is another school district in New York State that I will point out to you. It is comparable in size to ours, however, it is 9th, NINTH in the country . . . not the state but the entire country! It is forced to compete with very famous elite private schools that cost between $30,000 and $40,000 per year tuition in those private schools. The school district is located in Westchester County, it is the Blind Brook school district. Right across the street is Greenwich, Connecticut. There are no high school drop outs, last year 108 students graduated, and 108 students went to colleges and universities (not community colleges). In the last ten years this school district has doubled in size. As you can see, it is a small village that is growing. And yet its school budget is $42 million, about the same as ours. Their taxes have nothing to do with the quality of education. It is what residents demand of their local teachers and school board. They want their kids to be part of innovation and 21st – century quality thinking. And they own their own school buses too. The Village of Blind Brook was formed in 1989 too.
Now my reason, the big picture here . . . you are proposing this vote in the middle of January instead of May. So what this is telling me is that the school administrators and the board are ignoring — or trying to eliminate — a large chunk of our population – the snow birds, who volunteer in our community for a variety of things to assist our students to be the best they can be. That is not right by itself – nobody should be left out of the loop, especially the property owners.
When I started to do the math for what the proposals are for the things we “need”, I came up with $1.3 million that is going to affect me by 25 cents per $100,000. Then you have approximately $29 million and that’s going to affect by $1.04 per 100,000, for a combined total of $1.29. However, $29 million is about 25 times 1.3 million. So I’m saying this should be about $6.25 difference between the two proposals for the cost to me as a representative taxpayer in the RCS CSD. Who did the math for the RCS board of education? Elmer Fudd?
But forget that for a minute . . . then I thought this is going to be $30 million taken out of our community – gone forever. So that means I won’t have the $1 for when the young students knock on my door for cheerleaders or band or a field trip. Then I won’t have in my pocket the 25 cents for when the PTA/PTO kids have their bake sales, and I won’t be able to buy a cup cake, cookie or brownie.
At what point do we not realize this is not the time for such a major capital improvement. I’m a parent with a child in the RCS CSD system. I love football, I want the best safest school buses, I want our schools be structurally sound, but when I begin to read some of the double – talk stuff here, I ask myself about the alternatives. I ask about the solar panels, where are they? I ask about the cement plant across the street from the Junior High and High Schools. Here is 25st century thinking . . . why can’t we get the excess heat from those kilns piped underground to heat the schools buildings? They (cement plant) get the tax write-off and we would save millions in heating. Yeah! The cement plant gets the tax advantage and we get to carry the slack for them. For almost 15 years I have seen a school bus with a sign “School Bus Drivers needed – we will train you”. And now our mechanics are driving. [Does OSHA know about what’s going on in the RCS CSD bus garage? Or the unions?] And we need money for the bus garage, for new buses. At some time we need to stop and think why are we buying new buses if we don’t have the drivers to drive them? We may need to sub – contract parts of these bus routes out. Then I look at the elementary schools and the windows – but the two wings on both these schools are only 20 – years old, why do they have 50 – year old windows? Then, when I look up who was on the board 20 years ago, the DeLuca name pops up. Yup! Old Jerry Deluca was RCS CSD board of education president back then. No name calling, no twisting, just DeLuca names . Then I look at the current president, Mr. Latter. He is supposed to be a finance employee for Sabic, his day job? And he let these numbers out? And what about the other financial geniuses and teachers on the RCS CSD board of education? And what about the superintendent? Why don’t these numbers make sense??? Can’t any of these people do simple math?
RCS CSD Parent and Taxpayer