When the WCCUSD went to the people before the March 2020 election asking for an additional $575 million—to add to the $1.8 billion the taxpayers have already given to the District to refurbish or replace their crumbling facilities—District Staff touted the well coordinated and efficient oversight through the Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee (CBOC).
Now that the bond measure has passed and the District is preparing to sell the bonds, the very same District Staff has placed before the Board of Education a new Board policy that will oversee the CBOC.
The problem is that if the Board approves of this new policy, the CBOC will be little more than those phony baloney carboard cutout fans we see at sporting events.
While Proposition 39—passed in November of 2000—requires that the CBOC be independent of the Board and the District, this new board policy will transform the oversight of the Bond Program from an independent body to a Staff controlled body.
- Staff will decide when the CBOC may meet. This may be quarterly but may also be only once per year.
- Staff will set the CBOC agendas—deciding what subjects the CBOC may discuss.
- Staff will write the minutes so the official record will be what Staff wants the public to know about (and nothing else).
- Reports from CBOC members must be approved by staff and be in writing.
- Required Chair reports must be run by staff first and be approved by the CBOC to ensure that what is reported has been approved by the CBOC.
- Staff will decide which CBOC applications to process and forward to the Board for consideration.
- The composition of the CBOC will be limited to ONLY what is required in Prop 39 (of the seven positions, five are mandated and there is no requirement that these CBOC members even live in West County. This is a severe limitation on the diversity, qualifications and abilities of the applicants).
- No access to the auditors.
This is an extremely complex issue. To learn more and to read the proposed board policy, please use the links below.
When we heard about the $48 million budget deficit last year, how many of us asked “How could this happen? Wasn’t anyone paying attention?”
And now some of the very same District Staff want to play with nearly three quarters of a billion dollars of our money—with a phony baloney oversight committee. Remember when we were being investigated by the Grand Jury, the District Attorney, the State Attorney General, the FBI, the SEC and the IRS? Does anyone want to invite these people back into our house?
If you believe that the people of West County deserve better than this, reach out to your elected Board members and the new Superintendent to let them know what you think:
Dr. Chris Hurst