Saturday, April 26, 2008

Profligate Promotion by the UCSD

The Utica City School District will be going to the voters this June for approval of it's capital spending plan. Per this week's O-D:
"The district will begin a marketing campaign as early as next week to promote the capital plan in hopes of garnering at least 60 percent support in the June 24 election."
Marketing? . . . Promotion? . . . Public monies being spent to promote public spending? . . .

Disgusting! . .

Also ILLEGAL . . . School boards are forbidden from spending public money to encourage voters how to vote in favor of the school budget or any proposition. Phillips vs Maurer, 67 NY 2d 672 (NYS Court of Appeals, 1986).

While giving out "factual information" has been found by the NYS Commissioner of Education to be OK (e.g., Appeal of Loriz, 27 Educ. Dep't. Rep. 376 (1988)), do you really think that you will be given the full scoop on what you are voting upon? Have you ever been told the down side of any proposition? When Proctor was expanded, were you given an estimate of the cost of increased maintenance, increased utilities or increased staffing that would result from the project? Of course not. These things are always ignored. (Just like they were ignored by the New Hartford, New York Mills, and BOCES districts in their last propositions, and probably will be ignored by Whitesboro in its upcoming "marketing" effort.)

When the "information" you are given is one-sided and heavily filtered so you are only told the positives and not the negatives, it is not mere giving "factual information." It is promotion . . . It is manipulation . . . It is an attempt to get you to approve a project.

Enough is enough!

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