Mt. Blue budget voted down at second validation vote

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FARMINGTON – The $33.9 million budget approved by voters at the July 25 budget meeting was rejected at Thursday evening’s validation referendum, effectively restarting the budget process for the second time.

The preliminary, unofficial results, with all 10 towns reporting, indicate that the voters rejected the budget by a total of 139 votes: with 1,290 votes in favor and 1,429 opposed to validating the budget. That represents a slight narrowing of the June 13 vote, 139 votes compared to 184 votes, but not nearly enough to pass the $33.9 million budget.

Unofficial town-by-town results:

Chesterville – 55 yes and 172 no
Farmington – 555 yes and 442 no
Industry – 54 yes and 71 no
New Sharon – 95 yes and 204 no
New Vineyard – 25 yes and 90 no
Starks – 111 yes and 23 no
Temple – 50 yes and 69 no
Vienna – 51 yes and 40 no
Weld – 32 yes and 38 no
Wilton – 262 yes and 280 no

Current total – 1,290 yes and 1,429 no

That budget, which represented a $1.18 million increase over the previous fiscal year, would have resulted in a total tax assessment increase of $24,970, spread across all 10 towns. The process now restarts with the directors proposing a new budget, which will proceed to a new budget meeting and validation vote.


[Editor’s Note: Clerks from New Sharon have confirmed that the town’s results were reported to newspapers incorrectly; they were inverted (from the correct 204 no and 95 yes to the incorrect 95 no and 204 yes). That error has been corrected below]

FARMINGTON – Mt. Blue Regional School District is holding its validation vote for the 2017-18 budget today in all 10 towns. Polls will close for most towns at 6, 7 or 8 p.m. tonight.

Temple, however, runs its polls from 7 a.m. until 12 p.m. Preliminary, unofficial results indicate that voters there rejected the new, $33.9 million budget with 50 votes in favor and 69 votes opposed.

Other towns, now reporting unofficial, preliminary results this evening, include Chesterville, Farmington, Industry, New Sharon, New Vineyard, Starks, Vienna, Wilton and Weld.

Results will be posted, as they come in, here:

Chesterville – 55 yes and 172 no
Farmington – 555 yes and 442 no
Industry – 54 yes and 71 no
New Sharon – 95 yes and 204 no
New Vineyard – 25 yes and 90 no
Starks – 111 yes and 23 no
Temple – 50 yes and 69 no
Vienna – 51 yes and 40 no
Weld – 32 yes and 38 no
Wilton – 262 yes and 280 no

Current total – 1,290 yes and 1,429 no

More details on the budget approved at the July 25 meeting can be found here.

The initial validation vote, held on June 13, resulted in the budget being defeated with 1,457 votes cast in favor and 1,641 votes cast in opposition. Those results can be see here:

Town-by-town results for the validation vote:
Weld – 34 yes and 52 no
Temple – 65 yes and 75 no
Chesterville – 61 yes and 183 no
Starks – 84 yes and 19 no
Industry – 65 yes and 89 no
Farmington – 644 yes and 501 no
New Vineyard – 31 yes and 109 no
New Sharon – 139 yes and 207 no
Vienna – 61 yes and 57 no
Wilton – 273 yes and 349 no

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  1. I am embarrassed by the lack of common sense from some, the lack of understanding from most, and the sad lack of knowledge about this process that MOST no voters have shown. I wish we could conduct an experiment next year and have 5 no voters attend the entire budget process and help make it. Maybe then they would understand the complex nature of it. It is NOT as simple as saying delete delete delete.

  2. @ Legit Question

    Whether or not a student has an Ed Tech, is determined in the child’s IEP (Individualized Education Program), created by the IEP team (educators, therapists, parents, admin). It is a *legal document*. For more information, you can look up IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act).

    The trouble with not fulfilling IEPs is twofold; it doesn’t meet the child’s needs, and it leaves the schools open to litigation.

  3. Looks like 10% more voters voted AGAINST than voted FOR. It’s possible that belittling the NO voters will sway them into the FOR column when and if another vote is taken, but I doubt it.

  4. Arnold P., You may be right. So far it seems like preachy, misleading, sarcastic signs are working.

  5. Interesting how some of the Yes crowd views the No crowd. Apparently, us in the “No” are ignorant, uninformed, child haters. If our spelling and punctuation isn’t perfect, we must be uneducated and vote no out of resentment. How dare we question the budget. How dare we vote no after all the work that those on the budget put forth. Go ahead Yes crowd, continue to look down and insult the No crowd. I’m sure that will influence us to vote yes next time. I’ll give you a hint how I will vote next time— two letter word with one consonant, one vowel, and in my mind, both in capital letters. Some of you on the Yes side have only steeled my decision.

  6. Please don’t go after kids who require special ed. It is more complicated and a more diverse group than you might think. And there are fewer specialized teachers doing that work than you might think–helping children who absolutely need extra support beyond what the classroom teacher is qualified or has time to give. And yea, the IEP is legally binding so don’t even think about it.

  7. “Much of the funding for special education is required so that the school district can continue to be compliant with the Federal law and continue to receive Federal and State funding.” Federal laws are not written in stone, they can be changed if and when majority opinions change. Those who feel that any law needs changing should contact their Congressional representatives and make their feelings known. Sometimes it’s possible to PERSUADE City Hall.

  8. @ Charlotte Bogue ….. Not ALL children that are receiving special needs in school were born that way or are ” deprived ” at home even if they require a one on one.

    It’s VERY difficult to get a one on one for your child and we know from person experience! Our son was born NORMAL and at the age of 3.5 had serious medical issues and now has brain damage. I lost my job. My husband is on his second career and we own a home were about to lose because we’re struggling. We voted NO and will continue to and we voted NO on all the bonds as well.

    Our son isn’t sent to school to be pawned off and he gets the services to rehabilitate so he can hopefully become independent someday . Stop being so critical if us parents and our children that have special needs especially the one on one. Every situation is different.

    There are ways to cut this budget .My husband and I both have gone year or a few years without a cost of living raise. It shouldn’t be a given. There are other ways to compromise but don’t blame these kids.

  9. They will try for a third time and it will fail again, as it should, enough is enough, it’s become a monopoly. Ever since they built that new school, the name says everything, campus and that’s what it’s trying to become like collage campus and not a school. If They can’t cut spending than they should fire some people and get board or school members in there that can. Stop bleeding these towns for more money every year.

  10. Perhaps some of the Opponents were motivated to show up and vote because they were belittled by the Proponents.

  11. As long as you continue to censor the voices of Mainers that voted no, the real discussion on how we spend our tax dollars will be postponed until the next NO vote. Censorship is the liberal answer to common sense Mainers telling you NO. Have a good day out there.

  12. A straight forward question for those who assert that RSU 9 continues to spend more and more money without improved results: What are the outcomes you would like to see?

    I see my students going on to further training in the trades ranging from welding to computer technology services, I see them attending ivy and junior ivy league colleges and university, I see them starting small businesses and see them working in the community. I see them volunteering and see them raising families.

    And I see some who are struggling and I see some who have yet to find a direction.

    How might we better produce the results you want? We’ve been making changes based on the last major community conversation — of which I was one of the moderators — a couple of years ago that included law enforcement officials, major local employers, parents, taxpayers, and educators.

    That all said, educators are much more likely to take action with people willing to have the courage and conviction to own their positions and ideas. It is not unreasonable to expect the same degree of accountability to which you hold educators.

  13. Good question Mr. Ryder.
    Students have been moving on in life since as long as I can remember. Some do well, some do not.
    I was a terrible student and left public education at 14 years old.
    To teach students the same basic functions, math, reading and writing I see no reason for the costs to escalate the way they have in the U.S.
    Yes, times have changed, but the basics haven’t. If students decide they want to go into a specialized field then so be it, on their dime.
    Or if parents choose to push their child in a certain area then they should pay.
    Having to teach special ed. students is another subject and should be handled as such. I personally have no problem helping with that.
    Seriously, a large portion of the younger people I deal with have very little life skill/common sense.
    This observation has been supported by employees of your district and teachers at the community college level in the area that I know and discuss this topic with.
    Not blaming you, most common sense abilities are learned in the home life and taught by parents.
    The way schools are funded needs to be changed if the schools want to continue to keep up with what they decide is the correct level of monies spent. When the people get to decide, at some point, ( like now ),it just seems to be tipping the scales to the breaking point.

  14. How come no one has caught on to the fact that the husband of the ASL teacher made the motion to make his wife’s position full time? Not illegal, but very much self serving. Any way to get more free money from the taxpayers to make their own lives easier. Go RSU 9 staff !!!

  15. The tech program is great and necessary. We need plumbers, welders, builders, etc. Not every kid (thankfully) wants to grow up to be a liberal arts major at UMF. However I doubt sign language and Chinese exchange students have much effect in the real world of Franklin county. And before the liberals start wailing even you say you want kids to stay in the area. Most people in the area could care less about your dream of one world. Accept where we fit in that world and teach accordingly. People would be more likely to vote yes if they could see the focus on the reality of our lives and not an attempt to produce the next Obama. And calling a school a campus doesn’t fool anyone into giving up more hard earned money…..

  16. I am a tax payer but a non-resident in New Sharon, so I can not vote on budget issues within the district. However,these decisions and votes do effect my tax bill. Yet, as an outsider, a former student of RSU 9 and with a brother with down syndrome I can see these budget issues from multiple angles:
    1. Children with special needs need special care. To take money from them is cruel and unfathomable.
    2. The Foster Tech Center is a great way to earn income. Surrounding towns that ship kids to Foster Tech should have a rate increase. Adult Ed should be encouraged and use this facility to its capacity.
    3. Its time to get real about school sports by doing away with them all together. Academics should not have to compete with fantasies of Jimmy scoring the game winning touchdown or Kate winning first place at the State Ski championships. If you want your kids in sports, move to another district. I know plenty of people who would hay the fields or make them into pasture, free of charge.
    4. We also need to be realistic about the costs of our district. It will never be cheap like in the “good ole’ days” and thank god for that indeed. I think RSU 9 turns out quality students as long as they have the support of the community even if they can not read or write cursive. But, I bet they can out type anybody.
    5. Remember no voters, even if you think the budget is not about the kids, it is indeed. These kids will inherit this world and its up to us to provide them with everything they need to be successful academically. We don’t need more idiots. We got enough.

  17. Dan Ryder You speak of accountability? If a carpenter does poor work he does not have a job for long. If a car mechanic can’t fix your car he will be out of business pretty quick. But if a teacher can’t teach they have the Maine Teachers Asso. and a contract that allows them to stay no matter how bad a job they do. Don’t talk to me about accountability until you work in the real world for a while.

    You ask “How might we better produce the results you want?” Well just back up and read my earlier post for starters.

    Schools do a great job of killing the love of learning in a lot of kids. They also do a great jobs of labeling kids based on what they perceive intelligence is. I know someone who cannot read even though they Had special help in school and even went to literacy volunteers as adults. That same person can take a set of blue prints enlarge them and build some of the most complex data systems I have ever seen. The school labeled him as having a low IQ because he could not read and you know after twelve years of “teachers” telling him he was not as good as others he still believes it. That’s what school did for him and it’s sad to say but that same thing happens to a lot of other kids too.

  18. Remember when the Proponents of the Budget submitted a list of things that could streamline the Budget and cut costs without harming any programs, increase the involvement and feedback of the local citizenry in the Budget process, and also increase accountability for results? Me, neither.

  19. To All,

    Please make suggestions regarding how the school board can reduce the budget. We all have challenges in our lives, be they financial, emotional, or physical; however, we need to overcome these obstacles in order to find resolution on this issue. The bickering and finger pointing is not helpful. What we need is a concerted effort to work together and provide the best education possible at a price the community is willing to pay.

    Please reach out to your local School Board Directors and ask how you can help in this process. If we all do this we will create a solution we can all accept.

  20. To “MBHS Taxpayer Retiredx”,

    The money has to be in the RSU9 budget because the district has to front the money for the services and the Federal and State money comes in as a refund for the district. That is the reason that the town’s contributions to the budget do not add up to the total cost of budget.

  21. Cut 25% of sports, reduce teacher salaries by 20%, change tenure to 9 years, change bumping to lean more to who is more qualified instead of who has stayed around the longest. Start there.

  22. @Richard

    I’m sorry that your friend had that experience in schools. Unfortunately, his story is not unique — particularly for those of us that went to school in the 20th century. I had the same happen to several of my friends growing up in the 80s and 90s.

    I get the impression my perspective doesn’t carry much value with you because I’m a career educator, (My father is a small retail business owner, my mother an administrative assistant — so I know something about the real world.) Still, for what it’s worth, many, many folks in RSU 9 schools have been working hard in the past several year to change that approach to education and make changes that are long past due. Yes, there are still some hold outs and that’s also frustrating for those of us who know that problem solving matters more than standardized test scores.

    Another unfortunate reality is that the systems in place to hold teachers accountable and also prevent unfair working condition hasn’t always worked as it should. Everyone has opinions about unions and I doubt I could change yours. Ineffective teachers hurt everyone — I wouldn’t be writing this comment if it weren’t the case. There is a process for removing them — it can be followed.

    I’d encourage you to take a look at what is happening at Mt. Blue right now. Our CTE programs in Foster Tech are growing robust robotics, biotech, composites and digital media programs alongside metal fabrication, nursing, protective services, and more. We have entreprenurial programs launching. And our academic programs are helping more and more students find pathways to trades, vocational training, and four year colleges by building on their strengths. And our new success and innovation center pilot — 100% fed grant funded, so of no cost to local property taxes — is designed to help even more students, and teachers, find pathways to achieving personal and academic goals.

    And as always, if someone wants to come see what’s happening during the school year, just give me a holler there. I’m always happy to collaborate with folks who are interested in improving our schools for the benefit of our kids and our community.

  23. TJ – The area residents don’t have the specific information/facts and figures to be able to suggest things/programs to cut and by how much, or cut out of the budget, or investments that would be more cost effective, the Administration and School Board do have that information, they need to determine what’s realistic and explain it to the public. All the public can do is try to determine whether the Administration and School Board are seriously trying to help or obstruct, and vote accordingly.

  24. My attempt to counter Dan Ryder’s “Educators are much more likely to take action with people willing to have the courage and conviction to own their positions and ideas.”, which I felt was insulting to No voters, was censored.

  25. Nancy Porter had “the courage and conviction to own her positions and ideas”, remember how she was treated.

  26. @ Arnold P. said:

    “Much of the funding for special education is required so that the school district can continue to be compliant with the Federal law and continue to receive Federal and State funding.” Federal laws are not written in stone, they can be changed if and when majority opinions change. Those who feel that any law needs changing should contact their Congressional representatives and make their feelings known. Sometimes it’s possible to PERSUADE City Hall.

    Sir, please clarify what you think should happen with special education, because what it *sounds* like is rolling back hard-won civil rights and heading down a path towards eugenics.

  27. Cut Administration 30 sick days per. These days pile up and are bought by taxpayers at retirement. Start there!

  28. To Michael. Not sure what your situation is but how abut we give you and everyone in your family a 20 % cut in pay. I am not sure if you are aware that the teachers at RSU 9 are already some of the lowest paid in the State. They earn what they are paid and then some. People are quibbling over a few dollars here. I know for a fact this school is going to lose an amazing teacher because of this ridiculous bickering about these meager increases. The children are the ones who lose in this. There are many programs that help the seniors and low income. Maybe we should cut those programs so I too can have some tax relief….

  29. @ Dan Ryder I’m not sure the best way to get in touch with you. I’m interested in having a discussion off the bulldog. Maybe you could message my wife on Facebook and we can meet thanks. Look for Heidi

  30. @No Voter & @Captain Planet ~ You’re Right, my husband did put the motion in on my behalf but not because we were looking for “free money” but he has seen firsthand what I have done for the students, school, and community. He has felt the impact of lost time together because of how much time I did put into my program. I welcome you to google my name (Gail Carlson ASL) and see what I have done in the last 8 to 9 years. I have worked full-time hours since I transferred to Mt. Blue to help the community better understand the need for bridging both the Deaf and Hearing communities. I have brought well-known Deaf Performers, who perform around the world, to Mt. Blue without asking the school board for one dime towards the cost of these events. We are talking thousands of dollars. I have spent my own money creating ASL crafts to allow the students to help sell them (at local craft fairs and Deaf Culture Festivals) and use the money towards the annual shows. “Free Money”??? I have given so much to this community that if you knew me you would know that about me. If you have never attended one of the shows, then you have no idea of the impact this has had for the students. Students who have been deathly afraid to present in front of the class have performed on stage in front of hundreds of people. I encourage you to ask any of the former students or members of the community that have been to a show or two and ask them what kind of impact the ASL program has made. You will find that I have had at least one student every year I have been at Mt. Blue go on to college to study ASL to either become an interpreter or Teacher of the Deaf, which are highly needed in the state of Maine. We are currently looking for an ASL interpreter at the high school which is becoming difficult to fill because of the lack of skilled interpreters available. That means the student needing this interpreter will have to accept under par services while they are in classes this year, not okay. That, unfortunately, is the reality of the world at Mt. Blue and the school district (@Captain Planet).

    Why is it important to go full time? I am well worth my time. I am a Certified Teacher of the Deaf and Nationally Certified at the Master Level with the American Sign Language Teachers Association. I am pushing closer to retirement and I am planning my retirement accordingly (I will not need to rely on Social Security alone). I have had many career changes in my life but I know I can have a decent retirement if I plan accordingly. If I am not hired full time, I will be looking elsewhere to fulfill my goal. I may continue to stay half time but I will need to look for other sources of income which means some big changes in my program. I will be fulfilling my contract but there will be no room for the extras, such as, I will no longer be able to provide independent study courses for those students with an interest to go on to college for ASL studies but the hardest impact will be that I will not have the time to dedicate in planning the annual ASL show because I will need to find other sources of income. I have no doubt that I will be able to find something to fulfill my goals but I care about my own community and I am very passionate about what I do and teach. If another school nearby should start up an ASL program, I will be thinking about my family needs too.

    My classroom is open to everyone and anyone, before you judge me come see me in action. There is so much more to my program than you think.

    As for the ISP and Dual Diploma program, I have been part of the group to go to China and I know that it changed my life and the lives of the students that went. This is a program that will be bringing in revenues to help the school rebuild lost programs, and possibly new ones (scholarships??). Lisa has been working extremely hard at building this and we are now starting to see some fruition from it. Why would you mock this program when it is bringing in money that we will not need from you? I don’t get it. Why wouldn’t you want a student to have the opportunity to visit another country for cultural experiences? Some of these kids have never flown before, much less get to experience life on the other side of the world. Let’s give these students a reason to want to go to school. Support what we have and what we are building, especially if it is costing you peanuts compared to the results you get from those peanuts.

    Again, before you judge, know what you are judging. I welcome you to join my classes any time. I will be teaching on Blue Days for the 2017-2018 school year. You can contact me at gcarlson@mtbluersd.org to make plans to visit.

  31. @Arnold P

    I can only assumed you’ve abbreviated your last name, but hey, it’s 2017. I know a guy who legally added a hyphen to his first name so anything is possible.

    I’ve heard my colleagues raked over the coals on the Bulldog by anonymous and pseudonymous individuals. I’ve heard them accused of wasting money, ignoring people in poverty, lying, hiding, censoring, and good gravy . . .

    These are not facts — they are opinions and perspectives and people are absolutely entitled to them. And people are entitled to express them.

    What has happened to cause such a profound distrust of the school district and your neighbors that you actually fear using your name? Fear for your safety? Fear for your job? If that’s the case, I really do feel badly that you’ve been hurt deeply by someone because of your concerns about public spending. That’s not right.

    If you haven’t experienced such, do you think that poorly of your fellow community members that there would be legitimate retribution for expressing a valid and well reasoned criticism of the school district?

    If that’s the case, oh wow. We have so much more to work on in western Maine than school budgets.

    I’ve so much more to say about responsibility for ones words and actions, but I’ve said them all before and I don’t want to upset Captain Planet or Buckshot or any of the other fine folks on the Bulldog who I might unwittingly bump into standing in line for a mochadunkawhatever or pumping gas. It would be awesome to shake their hands, though. Nothing like a good natured rivalry of opinions to keep things lively on the ol’ Bulldog.

  32. John state teacher salary is obsessive in comparison to the rest of the real world, especially here in Maine above Portland. To compete to be the most obsessive is only the actions of those that bankrupt whatever entity he or she works for.

  33. To save money:
    Stop paying for the teachers to get their Masters Degree
    Stop paying for sick time buy back for teachers and administrators
    Stop increasing miles paid out to all employees for travel
    No more feeding employees on opening day
    No more field trips
    Buy out our highest paid teachers, if they want it. Give them an incentive to retire early
    Bring in some community people who would like to volunteer one day a week, just feed them a free lunch.
    There’s a lot of people in our town that are lonely and they have so much to offer a young adult. Let them help
    No more expensive workshops on poverty.

  34. “Legitimate retribution for expressing a valid and well reasoned criticism of the school district?” Perhaps that would be legitimate in some people’s opinions, I’d call that contradictory, but then, I’m not a tenured “colleague”.

  35. @Michael We are going to have to disagree on the pay of teachers. It is only 10% of the budget at the high school level. If taxes are so outrageous in this district people are free to sell and move to another. There was another person who believes I am trying to get my wife a full time position to get free money from the taxpayers. I know how many hours my wife has given free to the kids in her program. We have donated several thousand dollars of our own money to this program ASL…. Would it make my live easier. Yes it would. I would no longer have to work the extra 600 to 1000 hours of overtime I did in the past. So I could provide for my family. if people researched the actual cost to the taxpayers we are arguing over a few bucks to each household.

  36. My point was Mr. Ryder that there are many young adults that are ready to move on in life at an earlier age than 18.
    Many would benefit from serious apprentice programs. The community, businesses, the young people, parents.
    The ones that would lose out would be the schools. They would lose revenue.
    I am a retired auto mechanic and I can tell you that there is and will continue to be a real shortage of techs, plumbers, carpenters, not to mention farmers.
    Any one of these businesses could use apprentices and it could go towards the students diploma.
    As far as cutting costs there is no point in even mentioning my ideas.

  37. @CaptainOblivious- Again, do your research before making comments about something you know nothing about. ASL is not English. But let me go one step further. We could expect all students to use voice to text whether they are Deaf or hearing that way you can say they have equal access to education and you will be following the law. Doesn’t seem practical? Then why should we expect Deaf students to use an unnatural language to access education? ASL is a natural language used by the Deaf and hard of hearing, not to mention the nonverbal students.

    You also need to remember that not all students are able to read at the beginning elementary levels. While one would like to think there are easy fixes to this situation, don’t you think the Deaf educators have tried multiple strategies? What may work for one student may not always work for another. We, as teachers, are constantly working to find strategies to help each student succeed in their own ways. Hearing students are not always successful with auditory languages, such as French and Spanish, but having a visual language helps them accomplish World Language requirements for some colleges.

    If the community does not see the value enough to want ASL full time. Some one else will. I am not worried about me, it is and always will be about the students. You have several students who benefit from this language. But maybe you need to take a mini course to understand the value. I’d be happy to teach you a thing or two about deafness and how hearing loss affects these kids and I’d be teaching from experience.

  38. Captain oblivious sign language is important for a lot of things. Children can learn it before they can manage speech. Developmentally disabled peek can speak it if they cannot speak with their voice. Deaf people can speak it without a battery operated device. Same for non verbal people. Having to rely on “voice to text” would be pretty jseless if the batteries or technology fails, or if you can’t read.

  39. Regardless of whether ASL is taught at Mt. Blue, I have a suggestion that it (or something equivalent) be taught to or learned by EVERYONE worldwide! Imagine if all people, regardless of the language they normally speak and/or read, had a Universal Sign Language they could ALL understand! (I’m sure there must be a SL system for the Blind.) Much of the misunderstanding, suspicion, and hostility in the world, which contributes to war, etc., is because we speak thousands of different languages/dialects, etc., and can’t readily communicate with each other. It should be easier to travel to foreign countries, have tourists, etc. from foreign countries come here, easier for international business, the UN, government negotiations, etc. USL as a second language! I LIKE it! I think we should get to work on it ASAP!

  40. Re Mr. Carlson’s “If taxes are so outrageous in this district people are free to sell and move to another!” Now THERE”S a sentiment that’s sure to swing a lot of NO voters into the YES column! NOT!! I expect a lot of NO voters will bring it up as a sign of the prevailing Proponent attitude toward the taxpayers if/when another Budget vote is held! Well played? NOT!! Imagine if taxpayers said “If teachers’ pay and benefits are so low in this district, teachers are free to quit their jobs, sell their homes, and go somewhere else!”

  41. Like Mr. Carlson’s statement, ASL Teacher’s “@CaptainOblivious- Again, do your research before making comments about something you know nothing about.” is hardly likely to make friends or influence any NO voters to come over to the YES side, on the contrary, it indicates a pretty unhelpful attitude that is likely to harden the opposition.

  42. @Arnold P – I am not here to make friends or sway people’s vote. I am here with the truth and the facts. If I do not have them, I will not comment on it. I just wish others would do the same. People have minds of their own and have their own reasons to vote the way they do and I can respect that but when someone is trying to push a view that is not true or factual, I have a problem with that.

    Also, there is such a thing as International Sign Language used by the Deaf people and interpreters when they come together for world Deaf conferences to discuss issues at hand. I encourage you to request such a class and get the ball rolling. I would love to partake in learning it myself. There are several countries that use or borrow from ASL which makes it easier to communicate in our signed system.

  43. Thank you, ASL Teacher, for your contributions to education and society in general. Funny how a lot of teachers are like YOU!

  44. again, if you can’t afford taxes, you can’t afford to live where you do. that’s the principle of living within one’s means that conservatives tout in every economic scenario but this one, apparently. and how did we get to the point where a person who works for a living, to educate your and your neighbour’s children, is somehow getting “free money” from the conservative perspective? i suppose you can apply these principles whenever they suit you, and reject them without irony when they don’t. carry on.

  45. Re Arnold P. Really think I am pissing off people for real? I heard several people at the school budget vote say if Teachers don’t like the pay then go some place else. And that is true the teachers can seek employment else where and they have. If you live in an area where it cost to much to live. It is time to reevaluate if it is worth the struggle. Changes happen and people face struggles everyday. That is just the reality of life. I have been destroyed financially in my past. But I got up and figured out how to make it work.

  46. @Arnold P. funny.

    Nancy Porters letter to the editor: Your comment

    “Arnold P.
    July 17, 2017 • 11:32 pm

    “It’s possible that if the Socialist wannabees actually moved to a Socialist country, Sweden, for example, they might be happier. I’m certain the rest of us would!”

    – Your comment from an opinion letter. and now.

    “Arnold P.
    August 6, 2017 • 11:14 pm

    Re Mr. Carlson’s “If taxes are so outrageous in this district people are free to sell and move to another!” Now THERE”S a sentiment that’s sure to swing a lot of NO voters into the YES column! NOT!! I expect a lot of NO voters will bring it up as a sign of the prevailing Proponent attitude toward the taxpayers if/when another Budget vote is held! Well played? NOT!! Imagine if taxpayers said “If teachers’ pay and benefits are so low in this district, teachers are free to quit their jobs, sell their homes, and go somewhere else!””

    Your own words just looking to make it something it is not. Speak from truth not anger.

  47. Arnold P.
    August 6, 2017 • 11:24 pm

    …”it indicates a pretty unhelpful attitude that is likely to harden the opposition.”

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