FLOYD COUNTY —
Reader suppots Silver Street and Wiseheart
This letter is a reply to Mr. Ernie Travillian who recently wrote a Letter to the Editor.
I read, with interest, your letter about the school board being a dog and pony show. My entire family and I have attended Silver Street School. It is, and has been, one of the finer schools in the city. Some of the finest business men in our city, state and all around the country at one time or another attended Silver Street School. As we know all the schools will eventually get old, and with that, what will our debt situation be?
This school, as we all know, was an exemplary school more than once! I wonder what President Bush would say about closing it since he visited the school a few years ago?
I cannot, for the life of me understand how busing, paying the cost for the buses, drivers salaries, gasoline, repair and maintenance to keep them running, insurance, fringe benefits, etc. could be less expensive than keeping a building open. I would love to have had the opportunity to compare the two given the statistics. This was never brought out at any of the meetings.
I do disagree with Mr. Travillian with his comments in reference to one of the board members running for state senator. Lee Ann Wiseheart is a very capable woman. If he had read The Tribune after the board meeting he would have seen that she voted “no” to the closings. She does have a mind of her own and is not easily persuaded by others. Don’t put all members in a group to be voted out!
Sarcastically speaking, we might think about closing all the schools. Think of all the money they would save. Kind of ridiculous isn’t it given the circumstances. We don’t need a Taj Mahal in which to be educated.
In closing, I am very sad at not being able to keep the exemplary schools open. I know this is a done deal, but I don’t know what they can be thinking.
— Joyce Melhiser (mother and grandmother), New Albany
Reader thanks NAPD volunteers
Thank you to the volunteers of the New Albany Police Department
More often than not, we forget to thank htose who do the most, whether by oversight or just neglect. I think this is the case with the volunteers of the New Albany Police Department. These fine men and women volunteer their precious time to the police department, doing such duties as answering the phones, directing calls, answering questions and relaying information to the communications center to be dispatched, as well as many other duties.
These volunteers donate well over 2,000 man hours per year. All of this is at no cost to the police department or the citizens of New Albany. Their help provides us the ability to put another police officer on the street, providing services to citizens and making our job much safer, because there are more officers on the street, backing each other up during serious situations. None of this would be possible without dedicated, unselfish professionals, like Bonnie Ryan, Robert “Bob” Oyler, Mary Bezy, Dennis “Red” Smith, Joan Rose, and Diana Burton.
Each of you is an inspiration to all of us because of your willingness to give of your time and the professionalism you display as you carry out your duties. Each one of you makes New Albany a better place for people to live and work. There is no way that we could ever repay you for what you have done, nor is there a thank you big enough to tell you how much we appreciate you.
On behalf of myself and the officers on first shift, I would like to try — so, thank you, thank you, thank you!
— Capt. M. A. Harl, New Albany Police Department
Reader supports Grooms
There is no doubt that we face financial tough times. Unemployment hovers around historical highs, the economy recently teetered on the brink of disaster and many of us have been forced to make the life-altering decisions to keep our personal budgets and those of our businesses balanced. There are ucommon times, no doubt.
That is why I truly believe as we go to the polls this May and again in November, we need leaders who are willing to make uncommon decisions. We have one such candidate in City Councilman Ron Grooms, candidate for the State Senate District that comprises all of Floyd County, Clarksville and Jeffersonville. Let me tell you why.
Two years ago, as Jeffersonville City Council finance chairman, Mr. Grooms forecasted correctly that state tax revenues from property taxes were lagging. He implored his fellow council members and the Mayor to review the topic. Ultimately, he prevailed in convincing his colleagues that the city needed to tighten its belt. Mr. Grooms, and several other council members, including the Mayor and his staff, embarked on a cost-cutting campaign. The team, which Mr. Grooms led, was successful in reducing their $20 plus million budget by $2 million. The cuts missed the mark by a mere $100,000 when property tax receipts settled — a success by anyone’s measuring stick. Now, the City of Jeffersonville can boast of a $2.5 million rainy day fund and more than $2 million in economic development income tax surpluses.
This fiscal leadership stands in stark contrast to his opponent in this year’s May primary. Leanne Wiseheart, vice president of the New Albany-Floyd County Consolidated School Board, has presided over a budget that now requires the school district to cut $6 million — after the fact. For fear of making the tough political decisions two years ago, Mrs. Wiseheart’s administrative staff has now proposed to eliminate four elementary schools, reduce health benefits for employees, shutter three swimming pools, cut extra-curricular activities for fourth-graders, and move 10 and 11-year-old fifth-graders to the junior high school with much more mature 15-year-olds. One can only guess how much better off New Albany-Floyd County schools might be if they had the fiscal experience of Mr. Grooms to make the smaller-impacting decisions two years ago.
One thing I know for sure — we need to export Mr. Grooms’ experience, knowledge, and leadership to the state level. As our state grapples wtih tough financial decisions, Mr. Grooms is the right man for the job. Please join me in supporting Mr. Grooms in May.
— Ida Callahan, Jeffersonville
FLOYD COUNTY —
Reader suppots Silver Street and Wiseheart
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