2017-06-29 / Letters

‘Bloated’ schools should spend less, consolidate

To the editor:

For years now I have been reading articles in this newspaper about the Leelanau County schools. I have been unaware that for some 40 years this school system has been receiving millions and millions of charity dollars due to the loss of property taxes with the creation of the national park. Excuse me, but did they not also loose the student base which was the supposed reason for those taxes? In other words the remaining students and, most importantly, the bloated bureaucracy and infrastructure, have learned to live high on the hog of what they assumed to be free money forever. I continually read of the millions of dollars spent on new door and windows in one school, nearly a million dollars for a new football field here or all new ipads for each and every student there. In fact I do not recall any time the the schools of Leelanau County have had to suck it up like every other private business or the working folks of this county when things got tough. I have a few novel ideas which I am sure most readers have thought of but few have bothered to put into print.

1. CONSOLIDATE: It is disgraceful when there are graduate classes of only eight or even thirty eight students. Students of yesteryear did very well in life when they had to pay attention in classes of 30 or even 40 students per class. Northport should shutter and combine with Suttons Bay. Leland should shutter and combine with Glen Arbor. Think of the millions of dollars saved in building and infrastructure maintenance alone …

2. REVENUE: Taxation without representation. Wars have been fought over such an evil practice. How about taxing the people who actually have kids in school at the same rate as those who have none? …

Geoff Kammerer
E. Harbor Hwy
Maple City

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It does seem excessive for

It does seem excessive for some schools to receive so much while others struggle. For example, Suttons Bay's fund balance of roughly 23,000.00 is equal to the amount of money Glen Lake paid a consultant for the artificial turf. The problem is you are dealing with two different funding sources, State and Federal. Glen Lake receives it slush fund from the Feds and also enjoys being out-of-formula (keeping all their tax $ as they collect more in taxes than the state would contribute. Northport is also out-of-formula and receives high tax $ with few students. Consolidation was discussed many years ago and because of the in-formula and out of formula districts it is not a possibility unless the entire state funding formula is changed. Spending close to $1 million on a football field in any event is irresponsible. I do believe that Roger Parkins is upset that non-homestead taxpayers are paying the lion-share of taxes and have no vote.I think he is upset with the irresponsible spending of his tax dollars.

What a shameless, SELFISH and

What a shameless, SELFISH and thoughtless comment to suggest only people with children in school should pay taxes to support schools. Who paid for the school he and his family attended, and those before him. On second thought, from that comment maybe the writer didn't attend school. GOOD GRIEF.

I don't believe the letter

I don't believe the letter writer was suggesting only families with students be taxed for schools. I believe he was suggesting that the homestead exemption be eliminated. That being said, his letter does not provide much support for his suggestions. It does seem to exhibit his frustration with taxes.