Questions come to mind regarding bond referendum

In reading about the upcoming $326 million bond referendum, some questions came to mind.

• Has there been an estimate of numbers of students expected to graduate, move from the district, or choose other educational options such as private or charter school or homeschooling during this projected increase of 2000 students in the next 10 years?

• Has a group of advisors begun to estimate instructional needs — updated texts, additional qualified teachers, student services — that will be needed for these additional students? Will levies be required for these needs? Having lived here over 40 years, I expect more than one levy request in the future “for the kids.”

• What will be done with the open space around Sunrise, now playing fields, track and recently redone tennis courts? Will the property be sold, perhaps for housing?

• (Superintendent) Mr. Kazmierczak says there will be no talk of eminent domain as long as he is around. And how long will that be? Superintendents are not immune to offers of better pay and better districts.

• When we moved here, Sunrise was a junior high. Then it was closed, everyone went to Central, the district offices eventually were established at Sunrise along with Early Childhood and the Senior Center. Then Sunrise was renovated and reopened as a school, offices went to Central. Now the offices are coming back to Sunrise, after renovations, along with ECFE and the Senior Center. The point is, no decision by the school district is permanent. Twenty-five years from now, when we finally pay off this bond referendum, what will the district configuration be? Different from what is proposed now and paid for with more solicited funds?

This is a referendum White Bear Lake residents should think carefully about before casting their votes.

Cindy Paslawski

White Bear Lake

 

America nothing like Germany after WWI

By publishing Dr. Paul Reitman's letter in the July 17 issue, the White Bear Press has blatantly violated its own guidelines for letter submission and needs to issue an apology to its readers. The letter contains several "libelous or derogatory statements" which are inaccurate.

Dr. Reitman attempts to draw a comparison between the events in Germany after WWI which permitted the ascension of the monster Adolf Hitler, and today's America and the election of Donald Trump. Nothing could be more inaccurate.

Postwar Germany struggled to establish democratic government under the Weimar republic, after centuries of governance of strong feudal states under a Kaiser (king). The economy of Germany was in collapse. The German people had to learn democracy, had no resources to do so, and the Weimar republic wasn't strong enough to see it through — hence the opportunity for the emergence of an individual such as Hitler.

America is nothing like Germany after WWI. The very notion that Trump is like Hitler is the worst kind of libelous, derogatory slander one can imagine.

Dr. Reitman decries Mr. Trump's "sexual predatory behavior" without fact. While one may consider reports of Mr. Trump's past encounters as egregious and disgusting, to my knowledge he's not been accused of sexual crimes at any time.

Mr. Trump is accused of "war crimes against humanity" — a ridiculous premise. There is no "war," no one is being killed and no "crime" is being committed by the enforcement of the laws of the U.S.

Dr. Reitman asks, "What would we do today?" The answer is straightforward, though it seems to elude him. Become educated; make thoughtful, reasoned choices in life and when voting; and support the rule of law. If a law is bad, work to change it, but obey it.

Randall K. Johnson

White Bear Lake

 

Running out of golden eggs

It would appear the White Bear Lake School Board is proud of the state-record $326 million  referendum like a trophy from the state high school league for the high school trophy case. This is one they should be ashamed and embarrassed of and not proud of at all. We are all for ambitious educational programs but this amount of money at this time has crossed over into the great abyss of fiscal insanity. So much of this money is going into district centers and administration offices; where is your fiscal responsibility to your constituents? There is a line item for acquisition of any home that becomes available on Bald Eagle Avenue and by your own admission “not that we need it now, but just in case we need a parking lot or sports field someday.” They obviously don’t care what this will do to one of the most beautiful avenues in White Bear. Instead of a tree-lined drive with beautiful homes set back, the avenue will become a wide alley with views of school parking lots and the backs of institutional buildings. This $6 million line item is at least unnecessary and at worst frivolous and wasteful. It seems all taxing agencies work in silos and forget who else is picking our pockets. The city just assessed my property $1,300 for mill and overlay of our street. I think the city, county and school districts need to communicate about how they are spending our money or they may just kill that goose, as it will certainly run out of golden eggs.

Dennis Larson

White Bear Lake

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