Los Altos schools need Measure E | April 15, 2011 | Mountain View Voice | Mountain View Online |


Mountain View Voice

Opinion - April 15, 2011

Los Altos schools need Measure E

As the state comes closer to a financial meltdown, local school districts are struggling to insulate themselves from a worst-case scenario. This is certainly true in the Los Altos Elementary School District, which over the last two years has lost more than $4 million in state funding and could lose another $4 million — and possibly $5 million — for the next school year. Since 2006-07, state funding to the district has plunged from 14 percent to 5.9 percent of the budget and could be as low as 2 percent in the coming year.

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Posted by Marcia
a resident of another community
on Apr 22, 2011 at 6:52 am

We have such great schools in Los Altos! The state is such an unreliable source for our funding. They’ve cut the whole education system for billions of dollars the last few years. Many feel that our teachers are overpaid when in fact they are not. My husband and I have voted yes. The parcel tax is a small price in comparison to what our children are getting. Look at Cupertino, they're parcel taxes are so high. Vote yes!

Like this comment
Posted by David
a resident of another community
on Apr 29, 2011 at 12:38 pm

Property tax revenues to LASD rose 8.72% annually for 10 years from 2001-2010. Where did all that money go? Why couldn't they have saved some for the inevitable hiccup in property appreciation? Why did they promise lucrative benefits and put off funding them even when times were good and revenues rose rapidly?

Teachers only work 180 days a year so $100,000 in average compensation including benefits is frankly a good deal. Is it too much to ask District employees to pay more than 5% of the cost of generous health and other benefits for not only themselves but their family members? Why should taxpayers pay 95% of these costs for the whole family of employees, and allow them to retire early with full benefits as well? I really wish I could get free health care that I could keep even if I retire well before age 65. Most of us have to work until we qualify for Medicare or risk having no affordable health insurance. The District is accruing a liability of more than $1.2 million a year for retiree health benefits and this number is rising rapidly. They are hiding behind an economic slowdown and pretending this is not a problem of their own making from years of mismanagement.