To the Editor:
Why has the interaction of the Budget Committee and the School Board deteriorated so badly over the past few years?
Myself and others committee members have asked tough questions, done our homework, held members of the governing boards to task, and worked tirelessly to bring forward affordable budgets.
Let me assure you that the Board of Selectmen (BOS)
and the town's department heads are subjected to equally rigorous treatment by the myself and others during the budget process.
As a member of the Budget Committee, I can directly and freely ask questions of any town department head and get the information I need to make informed decisions.
This direct contact takes a couple of minutes to get the question clarified and exchange information, ideas, and rational for both parties.
The BOS and the department heads want us informed and are very willing to work with us.
This is the way business has been done as long as I have served.
Try wrapping your mind around the extreme contrast when you observe the relationship between that same Budget Committee and the school.
Why does that same Budget Committee come off looking as heartless, uncaring, uninformed, irresponsible.....?
The blame squarely falls upon the shoulders of the School Board chairman and the long time board members who have enabled him to virtually choke off communication channels.
Outside of formal Budget Committee meetings, the only way I can get a question answered is to send an e-mail to a generic address and wait for an answer.
A few go unanswered. Some take multiple exchanges for clarification. It can take days to accomplish what only takes minutes when dealing town officials.
The Budget Committee is the eyes and the ears of the voters and taxpayers on budget matters.
While the town is very accommodating, dealing with the school, although totally legal, has become frustrating, confrontational, and counterproductive.
In order to remedy this juggernaut, I urge the voters of Goffstown to vote out the incumbent school board members - Phil Pancoast, Hank Boyle and Suzanne "Sue" Tremblay and replace them with Mary Parah, Leah Wolczko, and Ben Hampton.
I have had lengthy conversations with each one of them.
They are experienced up-to-date educators.
They have opinions. They are not afraid to speak their minds.
They will question Keith Allard and Stacy Buckley before making their respective decisions for the good of our children's education and our community.