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Full disclosure: I was not contacted by GreatBlue and when I tried to participate in the Academy survey online, for some reason the site was no longer accepting submissions. So while I have no firsthand knowledge as to what the survey may have asked town residents, I’m comfortable it did not provide any more than a sense of the town for the future of Academy.
I’m quite confident it did not solicit input on whether spending funds on a school that we no longer need is more important than maintaining the schools that actually have students, which means Academy stands in line along with fire trucks, computers, schools, and police cars to be prioritized as part of the long-term capital plan. I’m not suggesting it should not be funded, only that we adhere to a more deliberate process that is already in place for all capital expenditures.
Far from a lack of leadership, we are adhering to the sound financial processes that have been created to bring transparency, order, and strategic management. Poor decisions are inevitable without vigorous debate over priorities, especially when something new is added to the capital plan.
To suggest that we move directly to referendum based on GreatBlue’s survey without considering the other priorities we have before us is not leadership, it is mismanagement. Now that we have a sense for what the town prefers going forward for Academy, it should be ranked, scheduled, and a plan created to fund. Another five minutes to do it right is not out of order.
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