Letter to the Editor

The public must be informed

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

To the Editor:

I want to inform our public how the current elementary school project was planned for the yellow petition phase we have now.

At the early phase of the projects presentation, I attended board meetings as a member of the public.

I was given no opportunity to participate in questions and answers regarding this project.

Take five (minutes), shut up and sit down was our board's policy for public speakers at all board meetings.

The board's policy for its members was no reply to public questions during these five minutes.

Both policies were strongly enforced.

Local law officials have been called, and appeared, if a public speaker spoke beyond five minutes!

Another board reaction was to call an emergency five-minute break then hurriedly leave the room!

Later, as a public committee was appointed by the board, architects retained and a financial advisor selected, I was denied the opportunity to have any input at these committee planning meetings.

I attended as a member of the public.

Still later in February 2008, at the 1028 Public Hearing required by the state, I was allowed three minutes to talk, about a $26 million building program that had been planned with no public input prior to this hearing.

When the board voted to proceed with the building project, as a public member, I was given five minutes for patron comments.

No board response was given to my comments.

When I took office as a new board member in July, I was compelled to abide by the five-minute public comment policy and the no board member response policy.

A no-win situation for me and the public.

No response given by our board when I was public speaker.

No response was given to the public when I was a board member!

Throughout the entire time of the projects' planning manipulation and restrictive policies at board meetings have kept our school board and our public separated!

We are now in the yellow petition phase because of this separation!

A fully informed public actively participating at board meetings would have prevented this present yellow petition phase.

School building renovation and decisive solutions to our educational problems would have been addressed concurrently.

Signing a yellow petition signifies an uninformed public giving approval for a poorly planned building project and sets the stage for a poor outcome!

This can lead to a wasting of tax dollars and a loss of education for our students!

Now is the time for our public to assert its rights and get involved in our school planning.

The blue remonstrance signifies these public rights, improved student education and taxpayer welfare.

Any registered voter or real property owner in our corporation can sign the true blue form.

This includes any yellow petition signer who may have a change of mind about this issue.

You may sign at the Saline City Booth at the Clay City Main Street Booth, 8 a.m.-noon, Monday-Saturday, and Wal-Mart/Pell's area on Labor Day, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., or call 446-3186.

Forrest Buell,

Clay City