Keeping up with the Joneses?

17 years ago

To the editor:
On Dec. 13, 2006, our school board voted 7-5-1 in favor of 80,000 square feet of Astro-Turf for the stadium field at the Dr. Gehrig T. Johnson Athletic Complex at a price of $650,000.      Is a $650,000 expenditure, at a time when state education funds have been decreasing, a responsible decision? Are we allowing our officials enough time to investigate and talk to their constituents before voting? Or, is the outcome already predetermined? Perhaps a two-thirds majority needs to be implemented to approve this type, and future, expenditures.
Are we trying to keep up with the Joneses? Maybe our priorities are not in order. Does $32,000 to maintain the one current soccer field seem reasonable? Does having Astro-Turf set a precedent that athletics are more important than academics? Will our budget allow for needed academic expenses next year?
It would be beneficial to have the agenda, not just the date and time, published in the newspaper and online. This information could allow citizens to contact board members with any concerns. It’s our checkbook, and we should be concerned.
Get involved, ask questions, talk to school board members (go to to get a list of names), attend meetings and be part of the process!

Chantel and Rick Graves
Presque Isle