Sue Zimet is such a hypocrite and this letter is full of lies and deception. I hope New Paltz parents and families remember her position when election time comes around. Also, I hope Mrs. Progressive realizes people will not forget she is opposing the creation of hundreds of prevailing wage jobs that will take place as a result of this building being replaced...I certainly will not.
Did Sue really say Vote for the kids and give them a less than adequate place to learn?!
The real reason Sue opposes this project is because she lives in a house she can't afford and has no kids in the district. It's fine for Legislator Zimet to oppose the project but at least be honest as to why.
When we speak about the New Paltz Middle School renovation/rebuild, the most important component is the students. Many of us who are voting "no" are seriously concerned about the impact of this project on the overall health and vitality of our children.
In the report documenting needed repairs for all the schools you can find examples of negligence. For example..."Install emergency eyewash/shower in science room" in the Lenape School. Cost: $6750. This report is five years old, but this has not been attended to.
Yet the district has $72,000 available to use for glossy fliers, mailings and presentations designed to convince us that a $76 million bond for one building is how we should be spending our money, binding our community to the tune of over $100 million of debt.
It has been documented by the school board that we are going to be short millions of dollars for operations of our schools even with tax increases. In a few years we will be done paying our existing debt of $24 million. Instead of incurring new debt we could use that tax money to pay for programs, teachers and after-school activities.
It was reported recently in the New York Times that the State of Oregon is looking to implement a four-day school-week due to budgetary cutbacks.
My years of public service have been spent advocating for children, education, environment and property tax reform. I understand all the issues and I get the math.
My professional belief is that this project will deprive the community of any ability to fix the other schools, fund any other municipal projects and most importantly, to enable the community to be able to fund the shortfalls in the operating budget that are guaranteed to impact the quality of our kids education.
To be voting on this bond BEFORE we understand the impacts on next year's school budget is irresponsible.
For the sake of our kids, it is important to vote no. Then we need to get to work on stepping back and looking at all of our building and educational needs balanced by the community's ability to afford them.
I wish I could support this project, but I can't. Again, my experience with municipal budgets helps me to see the dire fiscal situation our school and community is going to face. It is going to be a very difficult period and adding to the burden now is going to break the back of our community.