Doing the BOE Two-Step …
I’ve been watching the BOE budget process from my perch while knitting away. Facebook is all a twitter with posts of all shapes and sizes, loaded with interesting facts and figures extracted from Monsieur Zachary painfully. Beaucoup emails cryptique plus many privy messages and meetings. Videos of BOE and Finance Committee meetings.
Ah mon dieu, Quel désordre!! Has everyone forgotten what happened last year? The BOE, much to their surprise, asked for a $7 million increase and the newly installed Town Council lost their moral compass and gave the BOE and Harkins what they wanted without a fight. So the good Docteur Robinson and Monsieur Clarence got 2 years worth in one shot! C’est formidable!.
Now they want more? Initially 5% more or $112 million, but the BOE – under intense public pressure – “settled” on a 3.5% increase or $110.4 million. Let’s look at the “fun facts”:
- Your tax bill will increase $120-150.
- Administrator and custodian salaries up 37% and 42% over last 4 years.
- BUT teachers salaries up only 7% over same 4 years.
What about “the children”? We thought – according to the good Doctor Robinson – that investing in teacher resources would have the greatest impact on student performance, n’est pas?
And what about this? Did you know that they OVER budget each year to the tune of $2-3 MILLION more than really need? That’s another $100-125 MORE in your tax bill every year for last three years. How do you say “slush fund”? Oh yes, they find a way to spend that money too. No wonder they have worked so hard all these past few years to keep the good people of Stratford in the dark.
And what about those BOE and Finance Committee members? Watch those videos of their meetings and you will see many heads in the sand while the superintendent and her COO pad their budget at taxpayers’ expense with hardly a whimper. Incroyable!
If those “fun facts” aren’t enough to turn your stomach, we hear stories of catered lunches at BOE offices on East Broadway most every day. Questionable 6-figure software systems that no one uses. And does anyone really know how much the good Docteur R and monsieur Clarence pay themselves? It’s been heard that the Docteur makes upwards of $250k in total compensation while Monsieur Clarence is pulling in over $180K. Plus town cars, unlimited expense accounts and god knows what else.
Heard enough mes amies? I’ve knitted many many rows with their names in the fabric. Remember. You mess with the Madame and you get the horns. We’re still listening.
Filed under: Stratford Political Theater | 9 Comments