Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely young daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.
My issues are
School board members and district administrators in
(It’s at this point I intended to post a photo from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel taken at an MPS budget hearing in November 2007 showing the hundreds that turned out to protest a 16.4% property tax levy increase. However, a search to find the article that contained the photo using the ingenious Journal Sentinel search engine came up with, “Page Not Found”).
Back in 2007, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Alan Borsuk wrote about the apathy surrounding MPS issues, especially that proposed 16% tax increase.
"If you wanted to ponder the prospects for educational success in Milwaukee Public Schools, you only needed to walk into the auditorium of the district's central office Tuesday night. With a property tax increase of 16.4% up for consideration, with proposals for substantial changes in educational services as part of what the money would buy, there were close to no citizens present to give their opinions or to show their support or opposition. The room would have been just about empty if you took out the MPS officials and the news media who showed up, expecting a ruckus.
What does it take to stir people? Would that have happened in any suburban district?
It's a speculative question, but let's suggest the answer is no. Opponents of a tax increase that size would have been present in force. Supporters of the increase would probably also have been vocal. "
Borsuk then wrote that another hearing would be held.
"Officials hope there will be a higher turnout. Don't assume there will be. Apathetic responses from parents and the public are common when it comes to MPS issues. "
Some apathy. Hundreds turned out at the meeting to protest the huge tax increase. Milwaukee School Board members, in contempt of taxpayers and with no regard to the large crowd that attended the meeting, approved a big increase anyway, 14.6 %after the board acted to protect their travel budget and to keep their right to receive $150 a year in car allowances.
Borsuk also wrote in his story about apathy, “Would that have happened in any suburban district?”
The answer is yes.
It happened in my community,
Alright, let’s get to the heart of this blog seeing as I have violated a key rule of journalism by totally burying the lead.
I received the latest
Now, I like and respect Franklin Superintendent Steve Patz. You have to love a guy whose IQ is 800 times greater than the people he works for, namely the
My guess is the plan is to bombard residents with a survey asking what they want, and then taking those answers and then using them politically to submit huge budget (i.e. property tax) increases to build and build and build, even though most realize nice, shiny new facilities don’t translate into increased GPAs or state football titles.
Dr. Patz and Franklin residents, please carefully review the results of the recent
Our Super says the school district (the good guys that they are) want to hear from you and you and you and you about (cue the doublespeak) “the physical status of our district facilities.”
Those administrators that run our schools all year round then clean our fiscal clocks every December are going to send out a survey in September. Wow. They really care about us and our opinion, right?
Yes, but not for the right reasons.
Patz argues that unlike most school districts around
Remember the results of the school referenda. Not even close. Blowout. Mandate. We are taxed enough. Forget any call for new Taj Mahal facilities, no matter what your survey says come September.
Careful, taxpayers, careful answering those survey questions.
(By the way, I’d love to link to Patz’s “message” but the communication wizards have not made it available online)