BOUSD Mailer Is A Pack Of Lies.

An oversized BOUSD mailer hit Brea Friday, courtesy of the “Yes on K” PAC and it failed to contain a shred of truth. Instead it leaned heavily on scare tactics. Let’s parse the language one false statement after another.

BOUSD MailerFalse: “Fanning Elementary sustained significant damage requiring over a one year closure and almost $7 million in repairs and updates.”

Truth: Only a portion of Fanning Elementary underwent asbestos mitigation and repair. The total cost was closer to $4 million of which $2 million was reimbursed by the state.

Months passed without the board approving or initiating any work. We’d would have fared better had we called FEMA.

2015 SARC (School Accountability Report Card) states that Safety (Fire & Hazardous Materials), Structural (Damage & Roofs) and External (Playground, School Grounds, Windows, Doors, Gates & Fences) are in good condition and facility is given an overall rating of “Exemplary.”

Facility Improvement Needs list for Fanning lists these “to do” items: Seismic Upgrades for Kindergarten Wing and Main Office – $1 million; Asbestos Abatement – $500,000; School Facility Repairs & Upgrades $12.85 million. Total: $14.35 million

BOUSD MailerFalse: “The Orange County Grand Jury made a ruling requiring mandatory asbestos removal at all schools in O.C.”

Truth: The grand Jury has no authority to mandate anything, they review and recommend. Their 2015-16 report “Dealing With Asbestos In Orange County Public Schools” cited 12 findings and 20 recommendations.

gjury_aNot all of which were applicable to all schools/districts. The 27 OC school districts were required to respond (in writing) to only those findings and recommendations applicable to them. I checked the Grand Jury website and discovered that the BOUSD response is missing for some reason. Looking into it.

There was no mandatory mitigation required, this was a county wide assessment.

False: “Measure K will fund critical projects throughout the BOUSD… Earthquake Retrofit, Restore Leaking Roofs, Plumbing Repairs/Replacement, Installation and/or Repair of Fencing, Asbestos Abatement, Fireproofing, ADA Accessibility/Code Updates, Install Shade Structures, Electrical Repairs, Construct/Renovate Classrooms, Cafeteria & Multi Purpose Buildings, Installation and Upgrades to Campus Security Systems, Replace Outdated Heating/Ventilation/AC Systems, Repair Hardcourt Surfaces.”

BOUSD MailerTruth: This is not the official legal language of Measure K and is therefore excluded from consideration when holding the district accountable.

However, Measure K fine print does say, “… certain construction funds expected from non-bond sources have not yet been secured. Therefore, the Board cannot guarantee that the bonds will provide sufficient funds to allow completion of all listed projects.”

Following consultant recommendations, the district turned to generic terminology, proven via focus group study to elicit a supportive response to school bond measures. It is so nonspecific that it renders bond revenues into nothing more than a slush fund.

The process leading to Measure K has, from it’s outset, relied on total fabrication. It’s genesis can be found in the district’s failure to actually do the work as promised from the 1999 bond issue, in the dismal failures of 2012 and 2014 bond issues, in the mishandled asbestos mitigation projects at Fanning Elementary and the Junior High.

Liars, damned liars and statistics.

Stephen King once said, “The trust of the innocent is the liar’s most useful tool.”

The BOUSD and Board are relying on conscripting faculty to work the phones day and night, scaring the hell out of parents and convincing them that Measure K is the mother load of solutions.

It is not. It is a straight line to creating a massive debt from here to 2056, the preponderance to be paid off by those it is supposed to serve… our children. All with no guarantee provided that anything of real educational value will be created, upgraded, mended or mitigated.

BOUSD Mailer

ADDENDUM:

Measure K

Measure K: The Pros & Cons.

Measure K is the most contentious ballot initiative to hit Brea in many years. It has pitted friend against friend, neighbor against neighbor and candidate against candidate.

Measure K Debunked.

Five simple, indisputable facts are all any rational voter needs to validate a no vote while keeping the education and wellbeing of Brea kids their number one concern.

  • Fact: December 2015 BOUSD SARC reports claim all campuses/facilities are in “exemplary” condition.
  • Fact: Six months later the BOUSD Board votes unanimously to put a $148,000,000 school bond initiative on the November ballot.
  • Fact: Detailed punch lists totaling twice the bond amount ($300,000,000+) are released by BOUSD in response to public demand for more information.
  • Fact: The detailed lists, not being part of the measure’s official language, have no bearing on what might, will or won’t be done with bond money.
  • Fact: Any emergency issues over the next two years can rely on the $20,000,000 reserve the district has squirreled away.

Clearly there is no reasonable justification to pass Measure K. All of the well meaning folks on both sides of the issue need to band together, defeat the measure, begin the process of replacing the entire BOUSD Board and then join forces to draft a new initiative for 2018 that reflects real, proven needs.

I am voting for these candidates for BOUSD Board of Directors.

Paul Ruiz

ruiz_bwA 20-year resident and father of two Brea students. Paul opposes Measure K, believing that bond measures should be specific, transparent, and reviewed by an independent community panel to ensure funds are well placed.

Paul’s campaign statement includes, “We can improve our already outstanding schools by… providing a modern learning environment rich in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math that promotes independent thought and encourages student responsibility. Additionally, I believe Sports and the Arts provide a practical framework through which students learn valuable lessons in perseverance, accountability, creativity, cooperation and self-respect, and when combined with STEM, provide a winning combination for our children.”

Jason Kraft

jason_bwJason is no stranger to Brea Matters having written guest blogs on Tiered Water Rates and Measure K. Like Paul, Jason is a father of two including a newborn! Jason opposes Measure K and has gone to great lengths to debunk the misinformation pouring out of the district’s propaganda machine.

Jason states, “My top priority will be to fund our schools responsibly, and we need a new, more transparent bond measure to do so. Measure K has no details about budgets, priorities, or timelines, and it won’t even fund all the projects listed in the measure. The school board needs to engage directly with our community and listen to feedback from parents, teachers, and students. Some of the other priorities I’ve identified are creating an anti-bullying initiative; supporting our special education and gifted programs; putting together a technology strategy; and improving sports, arts, and music at all schools.”

I will not be voting for Gail Lyons, Rod Todd, Kevin Hobby or Joseph Covey.

I’ll not mince words, obviously I oppose Measure K. Consequently I oppose those candidates who support it.

The incumbents, Lyons, Todd and Hobby, with their perpetual unanimous vote, are responsible for today’s condition of Brea schools — curriculum, overcrowding, declining facilities and the fiscal irresponsibility that made this decline possible. Covey, as he repeatedly spreads the company talking points, has opted to turn his back on the facts and chosen to go with the flow.

BOUSD Mailer

ADDENDUM:

Measure K