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- Jan. 14 Workshop:HOW TO RUN FOR ELECTION BOARD IN 2013; HOW TO RUN FOR COMMITTEEPERSON IN 2014
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Council Can Give the SRC the Money to NOT Privatize the System
Helen and Dan have laid bare the SRC’s plan to kill public education and to use the Mayor’s AVI initiative to fund the murder to the tune of $94 million. I have nothing to add to their brilliant exposure of the crime scene. However I do want to point out that Council does not have to collaborate. In fact Council can help prevent the sell-off of the School District through a simple carrot and stick approach.
All it has to do is sequester the $94 million and hold it back until the community gets what it wants and deserves.
Here’s how Council can do that:
1) Amend the pending Operating Budget Bill to appropriate $94 million to the City’s Sinking Fund Commission, a traditional place for parking money intended to be used later for other purposes. Putting the $94 million there would mean the School District couldn’t get it until Council passed another ordinance approving its transfer later in the year.
2) Amend the Mayor’s AVI bill to shift the revenue targets so that the City is getting $94 million more (the money that would go to the Sinking Fund) and the School District $94 million less.
3) Work with labor and the community to come up with a plan that works to keep the School District public and thriving, and refuse to send the $94 million until the SRC goes along.
What if the SRC doesn’t meet our demands by the end of the next fiscal year and insists on going forward with its fun and games? Well, then the $94 million would merge back into the City’s General Fund to be allocated the following year either for other purposes or to enable tax rates to be reduced. Or it could be used next year to reduce the pain from the Governor's social services cuts.
That’s it. It’s not rocket science; it’s just about Council’s sincerity in opposing the privatization of the District. They can fight it if they want.
None of this is to suggest that going to AVI is necessarily the most progressive way to raise money for the School District or anything else. That's a more complicated question that I’ll deal with in a separate post.