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Why we should wait

June 6, 2018
North Fort Myers Neighbor

To the editor:

The School Board of Lee County is again disregarding the residents and voters of Lee County with their biased decisions by trying to rush an extension of the current superintendent's contract instead of leaving it to the new Board coming in November 2018 to decide.

The Superintendent along with the RETIRING school board attorney Keith Martin and Chairwoman Cathleen Morgan are negotiating a multi year extension of his contract, a substantial raise, a 10 percent Board-paid contribution to Adkins' annuity of his choice and, most insulting, requiring a supermajority to fire Adkins - unheard of in most superintendent contracts - while in the midst of asking the taxpayers to pay a half-cent sales tax rather than budget capital or general funds.

It goes to the issue of decision making and good stewardship which this board has not proven by their lack of oversight.

We must never forget the last time something similar to this happened was when the outgoing Board of Dozier, Kuckel, Sciricca, and Teuber awarded Superintendent Browder a $342,000 check on September 2010 before the new Board took over in November 2010.

Part of that "new" Board then was current Board Member Mary Fischer. As a Candidate Mary Fischer in 2010, she heavily criticized the outgoing Board's "golden parachute" for Browder, yet she is now fully supporting this "extension" for Adkins.

Adkins' dismal performance during the Bonita High School project is an example of poor oversight and not asking the right questions at the right times regarding the budget and the facts relating to true costs to the public and Board are hardly grounds for an extension of his contract. Reviewing Board members' evaluations of the Superintendent they make no mention of this terrible oversight and budget deficit, not even a letter of reprimand regarding this oversight which they are responsible for as well.

As such, the Board, new or old, should wait and see if Adkins can deliver on this promise before any extension.

If Kuckel and Teuber do not run for re-election and Fischer and LaRiviere have already drawn opponents, there is the real possibility of FOUR new Board members.

Out of respect for the voting, taxpaying citizenry of Lee County, the Board should wait for the public to weigh in by waiting until the November 2018 elections for two reasons: (1) the installation of the new Board and hear what the new Board has to say; and (2) the results of the sales tax referendum.

This Board needs to let democracy run its course before the tax payers (stakeholders), again, have to foot the bill without having been heard.

Dr. Charles B. Dailey

School Board candidate, District 1



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