OK, so it may not really be a news flash that school districts are often some of the biggest, least watched spenders of our tax money locally. Some of you already knew that but just need a gentle reminder that questionable management of our tax dollars may be occurring in our own backyards!
We blogged about the 25% tax levy increase that the Mehlville Public School District has placed on the ballot for November 2 (Another Prop C – Only This Time, It Should Be NO!). Five former school board members, several of them past board presidents, have announced their opposition to the tax levy increase (Five former Mehlville school board members oppose 88-cent tax hike). When you have five former school board members who are against a measure from the district, you know that there is something terribly wrong with the proposal!
The folks over at Mehlville Community Taxpayers Association (MCTA) blog have a rather on-point posting about the apparent disregard the Mehlville Public School Board has for good fiscal management. As they increase pay and benefits with no long-term plan other than tax increases to pay for them, they take potshots at the Mehlville Fire Protection District (MFPD) for being fiscally responsible!
Albert Einstein is credited with this definition – Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. The Mehlville Public School District Board of Directors may want to consider either a self-exam or professional help. They are obviously no Einsteins, but they are perilously close to fitting the definition!
For your reading pleasure, here is the MCTA blog posting.
On October 13, the Mehlville Board of Education voted unanimously to borrow up to $10 million to shore up the underfunded “teacher’s fund”. That’s strange. Were we not told by this same Board that everything was marvelous with the district’s fund balances?Mehlville employees were awarded close to 15% in salary & benefit increases over the last several years with no major new sources of revenue. It appears that these huge giveaways are not sustainable. It also seems that this incompetent Board has to borrow money just to keep employee paychecks up to date. Does this sound like wise stewardship of your tax dollars?To add insult to injury, the Call reported in today’s edition: “Before the vote on the resolution last week, board member Karl Frank Jr. joked to Knobloch (Chief Financial Officer Noel Knobloch), “Noel, have you run this by the Mehlville fire board?” Knobloch laughed and replied, “No I haven’t, but if he wants to call I’d be happy to discuss it with him (Aaron Hilmer).” “You should really think about that in the future,” Frank said.” Click HERE to read the Call Newspapers’ article.Since Mr. Frank is presiding over a school district that can’t make it’s payroll…we hardly think that Frank has any credibility to criticize the fiscal successes of the Mehlville Fire Protection District.Aaron Hilmer and his Board have been sued 25 times by it’s union employees in their quest to reform the district’s pensions, operations and administration. We haver never read that Hilmer needed to borrow money to pay MFPD’s employees. But Hilmer opposes Mr. Frank’s huge 25% tax increase, Prop C and is also a member of the MCTA.Yet, Mr. Frank may be on to something. Perhaps a call to Aaron Hilmer from the big spending Mehlville Board of Education would yield good financial advice that would keep the paychecks coming to employees without borrowing $10 million to meet short term cash flow deficits.We think that Karl Frank, Jr. and his tax-and-spend Board of Progressives will suffer a backlash from the voters of South County for their cheap shot at the MFPD Board. Hilmer, Stegman and Ryan proven to the voters that property taxes can be cut and employee pensions can be reformed without damaging services to the public.
Memo to Mr. Frank: Make that call today!