Yes to candidates; no to new tax |

Yes to candidates; no to new tax

Don Rogers

The Eagle County School District has been blessed these past few years with a solid board. That’s not going to change whether the Eagle area’s representative is Vern Brock or Mary Ann Stavney. You can’t go wrong with either candidate for the seat that school board President Barb Schierkolk departs.

This board and the one that preceded it have taken the school district from shaky ground to a much firmer foundation for future excellence.

Not without some controversy, of course. Changing school times and going with a merit pay system for the faculty have not gone entirely smoothly, though we share the aim of improving the conditions of the educational system for student achievement.

Stavney, a young educator who left the district to have children, stays involved through the Literacy Project and would bring a teacher’s perspective to the board.

Brock, the town of Eagle’s engineer, grew up in Eagle and is raising his children there, as well.

Both candidates are thoughtful, committed citizens who would serve with distinction. Same with the candidates running unopposed for the three other seats up for election: Connie Kincaid-Strahan, Andy Arnold and Keith Thompson. This is a good group to steer the education of our young ones.

Save it for a better cause

The impetus of the school district’s request to maintain a property tax that delivers an additional $4.3 million still strikes us as an argument largely to continue a tax passed for bonds that will soon be paid off for the sake of continuing it.

Over the weeks since the new property tax was proposed, its reason for being has progressed from essentially for “this and that” costs of computers and building maintenance to a now-essential new bus garage.

The district would be wiser to live within its means for such expenses and save tax hike questions for new schools and the like, an issue that is sure to come up in coming years if that 1990s population surge starts anew.

The argument that the tax rate for schools will just go down a little less than otherwise, so why not, is unconvincing. Why not return the investment to the taxpayers when the lead item for spending the money is a bus garage?

We encourage the school district to work a little harder with, say, the county and perhaps Avon to share bus facilities and services.

Telling the district “no” this time might well be a little painful, but it’s sure to make the sales job easier when they really need the money.


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