TruthToTell, Oct 15: ST. PAUL SCHOOLS LEVY: Yes for Kids? - AUDIO PODCAST Below
HELP US BRING YOU THESE IMPORTANT DISCUSSIONS OF COMMUNITY INTEREST – PLEASE DONATE HERE!
In the midst of the increasing cacophony of voices and signs and debates and arm-twisting(especially by the Catholic Church) around voting “YES” or “NO” on the two constitutional amendmentsMinnesota voters will face on their ballots November 6 comes another ballot questions asking St. Paulites to vote for or against a $39 million levy referendum for the St. Paul Schools – $30 million to renew the district’s current levy and $9 million for new technology to be applied to a variety of learning, teaching and administrative uses.
For many supporters, it means contrasting votes. That is, many St. Paul advocates are chanting the refrain, “NO NO, YES. NO NO, YES. Another is, “Turn over the ballot and Vote Yes.”
Unlike the constitutional questions, which would severely curtail 1) the right of gays and lesbians to marry, and 2) the freedom to cast ballots without producing a photo identification card, the St. Paul Schools believes it must not only renew its expiring levy, now four years old, for another eight years, but to bring more current technology to teaching and learning.
Also – unlike constitutional amendments, the levy referendum must simply garner one vote more than 50% of the vote to pass.
Until very recently, no formal opposition had emerged to the referendum. The St. Paul Area Chamber, the St. Paul Federation of Teachers, and others occasionally at odds with the district and each other over policy and curriculum and operational decisions are joined in support of the levy referendum. Now, some people associated with St. Paul Republicans have emerged to oppose the measure, calling themselves St. Paul Votes No, saying the renewal and the additional technology portion should have split into two ballot questions, apparently agreeing that the renewal is necessary, but not the technology.
Even students are split. Certainly some St. Paul high school students have debated the pros and cons of the measure in the hallways and lunchrooms.
Others wonder why this question was added to a ballot where most of the usual suspects in support of referenda (yes votes) are likely voting “no” on the constitutional issues. It’s also possible that St. Paulites voting “no” on the referendum would vote “yes” to deny gays marriage rights and to require voter ID.
Confused? Get in line.
The pros and cons of the St. Paul levy referendum and the nuances of voting “yes” or “no” is our topic this week. But we also explore the whys and wherefores of previous referenda and the revisit the entire matter of property tax reliance for funding education and how we moved so far away from the so-called Minnesota Miracle of 1971 – from a switch in education funding to the income tax and back again in 40 years.
TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI query a variety of opinionated stakeholders in seeking clarity on St. Paul’s levy request and education funding in general.
- Title: TTT1242–Oct15-StPaulReferendum
- Length: 55:47 minutes (51.08 MB)
- Format: MP3 Mono 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)