Wednesday, May 18, 2005

The governor finally agrees that average isn't all bad.

Indiana announced today that they will be capping any school construction projects not to exceed the national average plus 10%.

Here is another one of those convoluted sound bites for you.

"If we were as careful about construction spending as the average state, we would free up millions of dollars for other projects," said the governor. "Today, we are initiating the start of school construction savings for taxpayers across Indiana." (from state e-mail today)

Let me get it straight now, we are going "save money for taxpayers" by "freeing up millions of dollars" to spend for other projects.


Oh well, at least we won't have one of those awful Taj Mahal buildings like the new Colts stadium that we just raised taxes for.

I assume that thorough research will reveal that the new Colts stadium will not exceed the national average by more than 10%. To paraphrase the governor, "There's no excuse for spending vastly more money than is necessary for a quality football team."

Peyton was not available for comment and the Irsay's were in Bermuda.


At Thursday, May 19, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Governors "other projects" -- silly things like providing the infrastructure and an economic climate that will shift Indiana away from dependency on jobs in declining manufacturing sectors and into higher wage, higher growth industries -- like life sciences, information technology, alternative energy, etc.

It's kind of tricky to follow, but in order for Indiana to have taxpayers, someone needs to be earning money by producing something that a lot of customers outside of Indiana want.

Right now Indiana's largest employers are:

1- Government
2- Wal-Mart
3- Education
4- Hospitals

These are all worthy occupations, but are these industries the greatest generators of an increased standard of living for Hoosiers?

At Friday, May 20, 2005, Blogger Indiana Public School Superintendent said...

All those things are extremely important, and you won't find a single superintendent that I know of that would argue with you.

Here's the disconnect - those construction projects the governor is demonizing have nothing to do with losing businesses in Indiana, nor the fact that Wal-Mart is a major employer or on and on....

Capping school projects isn't going to create jobs that generate increased standard of living for Hoosiers.

In fact, the opposite is what WE see. When we built a new school our enrollment jumped up immediately as new patrons saw the nice facility. Call it fickle of those patrons if you want - but those patrons pushed for those facilities. They apply the same criteria you do when you buy or build your new home.

As a superintendent I got calls about our new school from wealthy people out of town that said - exact quote, "Your community must count education a priority if they are willing to invest in it."

Some patrons count the schools an investment and an infrastructure too.

But for some that is a foreign thought since it doesn't immediately result in more widgets sold.

At Friday, May 20, 2005, Anonymous sasquatch said...

I believe Anonymous is missing the point. If a majority of the taxpayers where I live decide to spend our own money on a building project for the students in our public school, what business is that of yours, the governors, or anyone else?

Again, so there is no misunderstanding. It is our money. It is not state money.

If we don't spend it on our kids, it will not be available for any of the governor's "projects".

If the governor wants to use my tax money for his projects, he should go about it honestly. Propose a tax increase in the general assembly, debate it, hold hearings and take a vote. If a majority votes to do that, then so be it. In the meantime, he should keep his hands off.

At Thursday, May 26, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You all seem to be missing the point. The Guv is simply pointing out that Indiana spends more than any other state for the same thing. Why is that okay? Why should the average taxpayer tolerate a 46 percent increase in costs for the same square foot of a building?

It is true that nice school buildings help to attract people and businesses to town, but can't we build nice school buildings in a more cost effective manner? And if doing so means that the debt service tax rate is lower, won't that allow the general fund tax rate to be a bit higher so that quality teachers can be hired? Or the CPF rate to be higher to ensure that our schools have the most up to date technology? All without actually increasing the overall tax rate?

I realize the education community is ticked at the Guv, and is prone to oppose any and all ideas regarding education that originate from the Guv as a result, but can't we all agree that spending more money than necessary to get the same square foot of space is really a waste of taxpayer money?


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