Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Truth Reports Elkhart Will Go Forward with Referendum Plan

From the Elkhart Truth:

Despite frigid weather and a snow day for much of Elkhart County, several community members made it to an Elkhart school board meeting on Monday night, Jan. 6.

The public meeting was scheduled so the board could vote for or against three resolutions having to do with a referendum that superintendent Rob Haworth proposed in December. The board ultimately chose to pursue two separate referenda that, if approved by the voting public in a May election, would mean extra funds for the school district through a additional property taxes.

A total of six people spoke about the proposed referenda. Most said they support this method of funding, but Elkhart resident Rick Rudy disagreed.

Rudy said he thinks “there is a terrible amount of waste” when it comes to how much money is spent on paying for administrative positions in the corporation.

He specifically mentioned that he thinks Haworth is overpaid.

“I think you have the money for all these improvements and whatever else you want, if we just cut the fat out of the administration,” Rudy told the school board.

Two parents of Elkhart school children, one Elkhart businessman, the president of the Elkhart Teacher's Association, and the director of the Boys and Girls Club of Elkhart said they are in favor of the referenda.

Ryon Wheeler, director of the Boys and Girls Club of Elkhart, said he supports the referenda because the schools need money for safety updates, repairs, and transportation.

“Our kids are constantly losing,” he said, adding, “It's hard to put a dollar amount on what their education is really worth. I would vote yes (for a referendum) because our kids are worth it, and I hope everyone else would too.”