Every year, “We the People,” have the chance to influence change or to keep things the same by voting on November 2. It seems that every year, politicians make the same promises and school districts want “mo’ money” for various items.
I live in the most expensive school district in Bexar County, Texas as far as taxes go. Yet, every year we hear the same “mo’ money” speech for the same items. We, the taxpayers in the Judson ISD district vote yes, and every year, the money appears to go to “other things.”
I’ll give a couple of examples of “other items.” In the first, taxpayers voted to renovate the high school’s football stadium. What happened next was almost indescribable. My voting ballot, as well as many other taxpayers’ ballots, did not list the issue. We were excluded, constituting “taxation without representation,” a clear violation of our rights.
However, it didn’t stop there. The existing football stadium was razed, and a professional sized stadium, complete with a full media coverage area and television cameras was built, amid millions of dollars of cost overruns. The 10 million dollar price tag soared to nearly 14.1 million dollars practically overnight. The taxpayer’s had to pick up the extra expenses. The Judson School board took a vote whether to release documents to the District Attorney on the matter.
The second example is more recent. Judson School District teachers had a meeting. Instead of having the meeting on School district property, they had their meeting at La Sonterra Country Club, costing the taxpayer’s over $8,000.
School district representatives defend their actions, but fail to give any reasonable explanations of what’s being done with taxpayer’s money.
Now, as I look at the current sample ballot I see Judson is again asking for “mo’ money.”
There are three requests, one for $63,600,000 one for $63,500,000, and one for $71,700,000. All three have the same explanation, ” The issuance of $xxx,xxx,xxx of Judson Independent School District School Building Bonds for the purpose of constructing, renovating, designing, acquiring and equipping school facilities with priority given to the construction and equipment of a new high school and the construction and equipment of an education support center and the levying and tax in payment thereof.”
So, we the taxpayers have been voting “yes” for the twenty years that I have lived here to “renovate and repair” the existing buildings and build new ones.
Apparently, the Judson ISD has the mistaken impression that this school district is full of millionaires with bottomless pockets. We don’t have the money to continue to fund a “professional high school football” program, nor do we have the money to fund “country club meetings” for the staff.
I thought an “education support center” was a school. We the taxpayers, are really tired of the song “mo’ money, mo’ money, mo’ money.” We need a break.
Until the Judson ISD staff can figure out how to spend within their means and to spend taxpayers’ dollars on the students instead of themselves, I’m going to vote no.
Other than that, the political races are fairly easy to decide. Listen to each candidate and cast your vote.
Source: Brian Collister, “Teachers meeting at country club…$8,000, taxpayers response…outrage” WOAI Website, 18 August, 2010
Source: Jeff B. Flinn, “Judson to vote on reports release to DA,” My San Antonio Website, 5 February, 2009
Source: Bexar County Election Staff, “Sample Ballot-Bexar County,” Bexar County.org Website, no date given