BOTA Pressures BOUSD Board.

Within an hour of Gail Lyons, Nicole Colon and Kerri Kropke storming out the BOUSD Board meeting Monday night, the BOTA/CTA shill Jim Rogers flooded Brea teachers with the message below.

Reading between the lines.

Hi BOTA Members,

Thank you SO much to everyone who attended and/or spoke at the board meeting this evening. We achieved our goal of packing the chambers and definitely made a statement. For those of you who were not there to witness it, the bond vote unfortunately failed. We cannot afford to lose momentum now.

Please read the following message from Jim Rogers, our CTA staff member for BOTA. Jim is also a teacher of many years and Brea resident, and he has our back! We must take action!

There is nothing on the BOTA website about this “demonstration” and no members vote was taken to ensure a consensus. When the “blue shirts” were commanded to stand by that Elmer Gantry on steroids, Joe Bartell, they did so with obvious hesitation.

Why? According to “blue shirts” that contacted us on the patio after the meeting and via email yesterday… BOTA members are as conflicted as the community at large, especially about the golden board perks.

Dear Members of BOTA,

Tonight’s School Board meeting did not go well for the children you serve, let alone your working conditions. A big thanks to everyone for wearing there BOTA shirts yesterday. For those members that were able to make the Board meeting last night, your presence was very important. Your strength as a unit comes when it’s time to stand together.

Tonight the Board failed to reach a super-majority to place a bond on the March ballot. This holds huge ramifications to BOTA members other than working in substandard classrooms and school sites overall.

Because of the age of the schools, plumbing and sewers, electrical, plaster and paint, roofing, and so much more updating is greatly needed. Too many classrooms have been displaced over the years. This is the obvious need for a bond.

What you don’t think of right away is the other complications that will come without a bond. Fixing the problems that pop up each year drains the General Fund of the monies that provide your wages, health benefits, and retirement payments. When any new monies are needed to fix breaks at the aging sites, there is less left to provide raises and enhancements to benefits.

BOUSD has $38,000,000 now to fix any of these items!

A bond must be passed in order for your bargaining team to be able to make agreements that improve your standing.

This is the union’s entire interest in this, not teachers or students, but in maintaining the union’s power.

It’s time for BOTA to show Carrie Flanders it’s strength! Paul Ruiz has been against the last three bond measures, and therefore we must not waste our energy on him, (at least until he runs for re-election.)

So, the union wants to bully Carrie… remember that folks!

Carrie and Paul both want a bond! They also want a board that isn’t taking money from students or is compromised by their need to perpetuate personal benefits.

The November Board meeting will be Monday, November 18, 2019, at 6:30 p.m.


Your strength in numbers will be needed to pass the bond, however, we must show Carrie Flanders that you have the strength to make it happen.

I wonder if Gail Lyons will make a copy of this message and, with tear filled eyes and quaking voice, wave it at the next meeting as another example of bullying?

Monday night she overlooked the message sent to parents during the campaign for Measure K to boycott downtown businesses – a clear attempt at bullying.

We need at least 150 members to show up at the November 18th Board meeting. Your presence alone will do the trick, but it’s appropriate for anyone who would like to speak also. (Speaking is not an expectation.)

Parading 150 red shirted teachers around (better than brown shirts) will do little to advance their cause… union power. Recent polls suggest roughly 80% of Brea voters support rescinding health insurance subsidies before working out the details of a school bond and putting it on the ballot.

That’s 120X your little band of red shirts. Get rid of the golden perk and Brea voters are inclined to support a well designed school bond.

We are going to wear RED FOR ED November 18th! We are then going to turn the Boardroom RED!!!

Again, thank you for your participation thus far, but please know how important it is that you turn out for this Board meeting! 150 strong!


Jim Rogers

CTA Regional Uniserv Staff for BOTA

BOTA is expecting defeat.

This communication was written BEFORE the board meeting, evidence of the foreknowledge of their weak position. They anticipated defeat and played right into their own shortcomings. Brea teachers and parents, for the most part, are too smart to fall for their strategy of intimidation and misinformation.

Read Dwight Manley’s challenge to the board here:

“An Open Letter To BOUSD From Dwight Manley”


26 thoughts on “BOTA Pressures BOUSD Board.

  1. The email makes clear that taxpayers are the target of the BOTA to get better wages and benefits (insurance and pension). So, if to get to the taxpayers they need to bully others, too bad. Its unwavering support of premium health insurance for board members is a quid pro quo for getting them better wages and benefits.

    • Sue… bingo! With that letter and its timing they’ve exposed themselves for what they really are. Greedy and power hungry.

  2. The teachers are being used by the union Rick. The union has bungled the pensions with bad actuary tables and management and now is desperate for new funds to make up for the 23% off the top of the budget going to Sacramento for these underfunded pensions.

    Ask yourself… why is the teachers pension in the worst shape? The union. And they mask this by attacking me and anyone that opposes prudent management or questions the test scores where 43% are BELOW minimum levels of proficiency.

    And of course the union supports the board having fat benefits because those dependent on the system are then easier to get to repay the debt. It’s classic in every city hall and every public school. Hopefully Brea puts a stop to this insanity.

    • Dwight… BOTA has exposed its dark underbelly and the people of Brea have witnessed it. They understand the implications and are unwilling to be taken advantage of any more.

  3. I hope Mr. Rogers is not teaching English. He made two gaffes in his letter: “there” for “their” and “it’s” for “its”…

    • Boadicea… Seems that correct spelling and good grammar are not residents in Mr. Roger’s neighborhood. Perhaps Mr. Rogers could shed some light on why 43% of Brea’s 8th graders score below minimum standards on Casp.

  4. Dwight,

    I have become increasingly distrustful of our school board and government in general. It is obvious they want a money grab. The funds or bonds of you will, almost never end up where the money is supposed to go. The board is actually causing harm to the students and teachers they purport to be helping by scheming the bond and not using the monies as promised.

    Shame on all of them for their actions to the students, the teachers and to you for trying to cast you as a trouble maker. And using the students to guilt their parents into giving money is not only despicable it is without any morality or common sense.

    Thank you to both you and Rick for fighting the good fight and making the citizens aware of the moral decay existing within our school board.

    • Tom… Thanks, from both of us. Raising awareness is our objective because we have faith in our fellow Breans. When they have the truth, the facts, they make good choices.

  5. After the Janus case decided in 2018 by the US Supreme Court, unions can’t require non-union members to pay union agency fees. This put significant pressure on unions to prove the value of their worth to union members paying between 1-3% of their salaries.Even if it meant being aggressive, loud, brash bullies.

    • Sue… interestingly, since Janus, unions have not seen significant drop in membership thanks to pressuring “opt-outs” to join which has actually bolstered their coffers. The thug mentality has been at the heart of union tactics since Hoffa’s days. Seeing it manifested in BOTA’s strategies today comes as no surprise.

  6. I’ve tried to follow that monster of a thread Jason posted on Nextdoor. Probably close to 350 comments. You can go back and respond to someone’s post days later, there is no continuity.

    I have to say there are some real freaks posting on there and they all are huge pro-union and pro-bond people. What crap. They just don’t get it. Not about the board’s extravagant and undeserved/earned subsidized health insurance. Not about responding to what a majority of voters want.

    They’re going to get their butts kicked at the ballot box. Badly needed funds for “infrastructure” won’t come in. Brea schools will continue to deteriorate. All because a couple of board members, the ones that stalked out of the last meeting whimpering with their panties all in a bunch, think they are more important than the people who elected them and the kids they’re supposed to be serving.

    I’d fire the three of them and fill their slots with people who really cared about Brea schools.

    • Manny… there are a lot of folks who feel exactly as you do. Several of those “blue shirts” have contacted who the union characterizes as the opposition saying they understand our position and are more inclined to support it than put on some stupid red shirts.

  7. Rick, on the 30 year vs 15 year bond I fully agree with you and Dwight, a thirty year bond would be much better.

    The last voter approved bond was in 1999, where up to $27 million in new bonds was approved. About $17.5 million in those bonds were issued in 1999 and about $9.5 million in 2003. About $25 million (unpaid accrued interest included) of these bonds is still outstanding with about 68% or about $17.5 million maturing… meaning all outstanding principal is due between 2024 and 2028.

    BOUSD has been in a deficit spending position for the last two fiscal years 2017-2018. What this means is that the $27 million originally borrowed is basically still unpaid. This will also mean that property tax assessments will be much higher in those years 2024-2028 than previously experienced.

    So, if there is a new 15 year bond issue, one should bet there will be another one before the end of that 15 years. The proponents for the new bond issue are more concerned about taking pressure off the deficit spending for room to pay off pension liabilities totaling about $59 million and higher wage and other employee benefits.

    So rather than worry about the difference in interest costs, I am more worried about piling on more and more taxpayer debt to fund employee salaries and benefits without better financial management.

    The rush to the ballot by proponents is to avoid taxpayers noticing the huge assessments that are forthcoming in future tax bills to pay off the remaining debt of the 1999 bond approval. All financial figures are from the 2018 audited BOUSD financial statements.

    • Sue… thanks for putting real numbers, in terms we all can understand. There has been continuous rhetoric from unions and union influenced sources that the “new” bond(s) would be for infrastructure and not to pay teacher/staff salaries and benefits.

      In the same simple terms you used here, can you shed some light on this issue? The fear of funds being diverted looms large in the minds of many and it would be great to give them facts around which they can wrap their opinions.

  8. Rick, it is true that any new bonds approved by voters would have to be used exclusively for new buildings, additions, improvements, and repairs to existing buildings. Keep in mind the $27 million in bonds from the 1999 voter approval was enough to build an entire new school (Olinda elementary) and fund major improvements for BOJHS.

    So, the proposed issue of bonds being for a ginormous $123 MILLIONS should be more than mind boggling to voters, which amount will not be for any new schools, as student population is no longer growing and not expected to increase. Furthermore any new developments in Brea that are expected to increase student population will have to pay school district development fees that will fund new schools along with matching state funding.

    As such, voters need to realize that AB 48 now allows unified school districts to increase BOUSD property tax assessments to $60 per $100,000 of assessed value, or $360 per year for a home assessed at $600,000 which is much more than the specious “best estimate” in the proposed bond resolution of $49 per $100,000.

    But to answer your question, why the BOUSD Administration and BOTA would be in favor of a large bond issue knowing it can only be used for building related costs IS that a significant amount of current revenues of the BOUSD is used for school building repairs that would not otherwise be available for other expenses without a new bond issue.

    Keep in mind, the remaining 1999 fund proceeds which could have been used for such current building repairs and improvements has all been used, except for about $15,000 (even though $25 million remains unpaid of the 1999 bonds).

    So new bond proceeds would used to pay for repairs and improvements of buildings allowing the school district extra funds to pay off pension liability debt currently which was about $59 million at year end 2018, to pay higher salaries and benefits and pay other expenses.

    The pattern is clear, more long term debt is needed to fund current expenses. Higher school assessments are coming with or without a new bond issue. With high pension liability remaining, this will get worse. The question is what is the answer?

    No doubt Proposition 13 has handcuffed school districts, but out of control spending and wasted spending are also to blame. For example, Fanning has an overly bright electronic billboard smack in the middle of a quiet residential neighborhood along with a huge concrete monument sign that were part of the recent repairs. The then new BOHS, upon completion, had a lot of building problems requiring massive amounts to fix.

    You have to wonder how past and current administrators make six digit salaries with near equal pensions would let this happen under the watch of our school board.

    • Sue… Wow, again thanks! Putting these things in terms that we commoners can understand will go a long way towards molding public opinion and producing better results from our votes… for ballot measures and candidates.

      This reminds me so much of the bait-n-switch pulled by the state when they sold us on a lottery to help fund education. When it passed, the state redirected all funds previously earmarked for education to other pet projects and replaced it with the new lottery revenue… at a rate lower than education was being funded previously. What a complete scam.

      Not only have we been stuck with inadequate funding for education, we now have a state full of gambling addicts.

  9. Rick. This may be a dumb question. How can a bond from 1999 have only $2,000,000 paid down from $27,000,000 over 20 years?

    I heard they refinanced this bond at a lower rate not too long ago. But this should only help pay it off sooner. How can it still have $25,000,000 unpaid ? Thank you

  10. The simple answer is there is significant accretion on many of those bonds which were sold at less than par including many zero coupon bonds where there are no coupons and thus no regular periodic interest is paid.

    All of that accretion becomes due at maturity since the amount due at maturity is the full stated value of the bond. See the footnotes in the audited financials which provides the details.

    • Sue… thanks. I sort of follow you. I’ve never heard of this sort of delayed “pain” but it is reminiscent of the use of Novocaine.

    • Sue… after more thought I believe I will contact the OC Auditor/Controller’s office and try to piece together a more clear picture of the cashflow in this matter. Do. expect an email from me tomorrow with a few questions.

      Thanks again for lending us the benefit of your insight and experience.

  11. Rick, I need to make a correction after thinking more about Dwight’s comment. Dwight is correct, I forgot to subtract the proceeds from the refinancing of the 1999 bond issue in 2009 and 2011 totaling about $13.5 million which were placed in escrow accounts to repay a portion of the 1999 bonds.

    The escrow accounts are counterbalancing accounts not netted in the outstanding debt shown for the 1999 bonds in the financial statements.

    The bottom line is the net outstanding debt on the 1999 bonds is about $11.5 million at year end 2018.

    • Sue… thanks, that helps. I was about to unleash the hounds of hell in another deep data inquiry and I can maybe exhale. I think it still wise to get a clear accounting of disbursements from the County records however.

  12. Rick… ihis is to clear up any confusion about the amount of bonds outstanding from the 1999 voter approved bonds.

    The 2010 and 2011 bonds issued to refinance the 1999 bonds were done pursuant to the 1999 voter approval of bonds. As such, $13.5 million of new bonds were issued in 2010 and 2011 to refund and extinguish a near equal amount of the 1999 bonds. So, the total amount of the principal debt of the 1999 voter approved bonds including the 2010 and 2011 refinanced bonds never exceeded the $27 million. The amount of this 1999 voter approved bond debt outstanding at June 30, 2018 is $23.3 million which is in the BOUSD 2018 audited financial statement (the amount can be found in the top table on page 34 of the audited report).

    This amount includes the 1999 bonds, less the 1999 bonds refinanced, plus the 2010 and 2011 bonds and plus accreted interest on the non refunded 1999 bonds that are zero coupon bonds. Zero coupon bonds or capital appreciation notes do not pay any interest as all equivalent interest is paid at the maturity date of the bond. While zero coupon bonds do not pay interest they accrete interest over time. The accreted interest in that table is the total equivalent interest on those bonds as of the date of June 30, 2018.

    Since the 1999 voter approved bonds are general obligation bonds, this means the assessment rate is determined by the total bond debt due (including interest and principal) in the next year. The total assessed value of all properties in the district times the assessment rate equals that amount of total bond debt due the next year. For example, if the total assessed valuation is $100,000, and the total bond debt due the next year is $20, the assessment rate would be .02% or $20 per $100,000.

    Because the 1999 voter approved bonds are back loaded as to total bond debt maturing between 2024-2028, the assessments will be higher as more bond debt per year will be maturing in those years, assuming total assessed valuation remains constant. However, the actual increase is effected by the then total assessed valuation. If the total assessed value remains constant, the assessment rate will for 2028 go up to about $33.7 per $100,000 of assessed valuation from the current $22.9 per $100,000.

    Of course, if there is an increase in total assessed valuation, the assessment rate would go down and vice versa.

    In good economic times, the total assessed valuation usually goes up and in bad times, total assessed valuation usually goes down. In the last downturn, many large property owners had their properties reassessed at lower values.

    Note any new bonds issued would increase the assessment rate based on the terms of such new bonds, though all 1999 voter approved bonds mature prior to the end of 2028 and there will be no further assessments for those bonds.

    • Sue… I find myself back in the deep end of the pool again.

      If I read you right, it’s a bad news, good news situation. The bad news is that we still owe $23.3MM on the 1999 bonds and our assessment rate, which is adjusted annually, will spike in the 2024-2028 period by as much as 30% ($29.78 per $100,000) to 50% ($34.37 per $100,000) greater than today. These balloon payments are due, in part, to accreted interest making the amount payable at maturity so high.

      The good news is that all of these “shenanigans” used in 1999 to make it appear to voters that the bonds were more “affordable” are off the table today. When today’s school bond proposal quotes a rate of taxation it’s for the duration of the bond and not subject to annual readjustments.

  13. Rick, that quote is a “best estimate“ only. The potential upper limit of the assessment for new bonds issued under proposition 39 and AB 48 is $60 per $100,000 of assessed value. Without the exact terms of the new bonds issued including debt servicing schedule, the total assessed valuation of subject properties in the future, the exact assessment rate for any future year can’t be determined.

    It is most unlikely that the new bond proposal resolutions will instead of a “best estimate” have a definitive maximum assessment rate less than the legal limit or $60 per $100,000 of assessed value. That is why all the details for the determination of the “best estimate” and the assumptions used needed to be disclosed to voters and board members prior to approval.

    Remember, the proposed issue is $123 million to be repaid in 15 years and not $27 million over 30 years.

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