Thursday, October 11, 2007

No money down. No money a month.

Imagine for a moment, if you stopped paying rent. What do you think would happen? You would likely get a notice to pay the rent within three days or leave the premises. Imagine if you stopped paying your water bill. What do you think would happen? What about that power bill? I would guess you would soon be sitting in the dark. What would happen if that friendly custodian you hired to clean your home never received a paycheck? Your answers may have more to do with reality than District practices, but if you were a member of the school board, you would be held to a totally different standard.

You could occupy three cubicles, have three telephones, all the parking you could imagine, free use of meeting rooms and photocopiers, access at all hours, free custodial support, free maintenance, free reconfiguration services for your free cubicles, free access to District staff and resources and a captive audience to peddle your services.

There is the added perk of being insulated from increased demand for space by legitimate, District programming. In the private sector, a freeloader would be tossed to the curb to accommodate the needs of critical, operational imperatives. In the District, public space is handed over to support the pet projects of board members - like Pat Shields.

Would you believe that this sort of abuse has been going on and actively supported for more than five years? When will it stop? Ask Marla Miller.


Anonymous said...

Please cite the RCW that makes this free ride possible.

Anonymous said...

Can you please provide (as in could you link to it) any documentation you have received from this. One of your posts to the Attorney General makes it clear that you have now read the use agreement. Can you publish it? said...

I wrote the use agreement. I secured the signatures. I was the individual responsible for processing their checks - not that there were any.

I will post it when it comes.

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Prior to the use agreement, the district used public funds to support Powerful Partners (staff, materials, etc). At the time, I didn't know a board member was the director, but I did know that Ellen Kahn, assistant superintendent, and a principal or two were on the board of directors. It seemed like a conflict of interest to me, but I was assured by Marla Miller it was legitimate. However, she was concerned about setting a precedent for non-profits and stopped allowing district funds to be directly used, but allowed them to bill the district for their services. I'm sure you will find payments to them in the accounts payable records.

In no way do I think Powerful Partners work is ineffective or not meaningful. What I am opposed to is preferential treatment by one non-profit over another, and the "gift of public funds" argument that is so often used. The use agreement was written to appease the state auditors, but non-enforcement and non-collection are inexcusable. Just another "nose-thumbing" to the state auditor by Marla Miller. And another example of poor business management under the direction of the business office manager and accounts receivable supervisor.