To the editor:
I read in the paper this morning that the Mifflin County School District Superintendent spoke to the local Rotary Club about all the recent changes in the school district. I wish I had been there because I have questions about some of these recent "changes."
At the June 28 meeting the school board "changed" my, and everyone else's taxes, by voting to increase them, supposedly to meet budgetary needs. What I can't figure out is why with all the school closings and layoffs of teachers and other staff there are budget issues. So I started looking around. The week before the June 28 tax increase, the board hired some big out of town law firm as "special counsel." Maybe it's just me, but I would like to know a whole lot more about what "special counsel" is going to do to save us tax money and how much it's going to cost the taxpayers to do whatever it is "special counsel" is doing.
At the same June 28 meeting my taxes were increased, the school board declined to rehire the local lawyers who represented the district for years, and still represent our vo-tech by the way. I could find no explanation why this was done.
The in late July, the school board hired a big Harrisburg firm to replace the local law firm as lawyers for the school district. I could not imagine how this could be more cost efficient but I really didn't know much about these big city lawyers, so I did an internet search to learn more. Boy was I shocked at what I found. I learned that the law firm my local school district had just hired works closely with the mayor of Harrisburg on city related issues. This is really scarey, since it is no secret that Harrisburg is in terrible financial shape. Then I found that this same group of lawyers was fired by the Harrisburg School District partly because their bills were so high, as in over half a million dollars charged in about one year. If that's not bad enough, the Harrisburg School District is suing "our" new lawyers for malpractice. Finally, Central Dauphin School District also fired "our" new lawyers when they charged almost $200,000 to research a busing issue. Are you kidding me?
It seems to me that instead of closing schools, laying people off and sending local tax dollars to out of town lawyers, we should be looking to get rid of the school board members who brought these new problems to Mifflin County. These are the cuts that are really needed.