Friday, November 28, 2008

Perhaps NPI should audit that piano transaction.

Living in Edmonds, we have a great resource right at our fingertips. There is an organization called Northwest Procurement Institute that offers training in public agency procurement practices. Just take a look at the current list of course offerings. Wouldn't it be great to tap that exceptionally endowed organization to review the piano scam and truly put the issue to rest, once and for all?

We could also ask NPI to review the Powerful Partners (conveniently renamed Powerful Tutors) lease and see if it truly is a legally binding document. I don't run an "Institute" but I am fairly sure that I know a lease when I see one, or in this case, write one. If NPI can wield the weight of their considerable intellect and publicly declare whether the lease is valid, it could take a lot of pressure off of the Board and offer a respite from sniping by the blog.

But wait a minute. Isn't that the same organization that is owned and operated by a member of the school board? So, wouldn't it stand to reason that such a review has already taken place? If the Board accepted and endorsed the manner in which the pianos were acquired and declared the lease with Powerful Partners invalid, that would undermine the strength of management at NPI. This is a rather sad turn of events. The Board seemingly had an expert among them and still allowed district management to run amok. It wasn't as if there were five imbeciles on the Board. One of them actually passes himself off as an expert in the realm of procurement practices.

The same can be said of the contaminated site slated to accommodate the new administration building. Someone trained as an engineer should be able to understand the concept of contamination. So, if such an engineer were to be a member of the Board, and I am led to believe that there is such an engineer on the Board, wouldn't he be in a position to know what constitutes a significant threshold? Wouldn't he have an idea as to what constitutes a mathematical certainty and what can be relegated to a less significant margin of acceptability? Wouldn't this person's inability to grasp the concept of contamination cast a questionable shadow across his employer's ability to hire the best and brightest engineers? Of course, since he only recently asked if the site was contaminated, he clearly must have been sleeping since 2005.

We need better people on the Board. While the public may have tapped the current board members for the illusion of intelligence, it hasn't generated the sort of results we have been seeking. Having the credentials to serve the public and using them are two entirely different things. Saying you seek public accountability and actually promoting it are two different things. The Board is currently unable or unwilling to truly govern our district with the sort of leadership we desperately need.

I find it surprising that, as a nation we were able to take an awe-inspiring step forward by electing a relatively unknown senator to become our next president and yet locally, we collectively refuse to embrace the opportunity to change things for the better.

I wonder if the owner/operator of NPI truly believes that the piano scam wasn't a scam at all. I wonder if he truly believes that a signed lease with a public agency doesn't mean anything.

I wonder if an engineer in the aerospace industry truly believes that the new administration site isn't contaminated because Marla confirmed it. Perhaps if Marla taped cardboard wings on a bicycle and confirmed that it could fly, this board member would be packing his bags to fly it to his next vacation.

The foolish choices made by our elected board members, and Gary Noble, do very little to promote the intelligence and objective deliberation of district leadership, but they also weaken the strength of companies in our region.

Blog: Simplified Acquisition Procedures - Advanced - 5 Days - $830. If a public agency seeks to procure anything, just write a lease. Give Perkins a call and I am sure they can draft something hardly intelligible but that meets the minimum legal threshold.


Anonymous said...

This is a good point. If these people had hearts they would know they are wrong.

Anonymous said...

I can't look at the classes. My computer doesn't give out cookies.

Anonymous said...

Join Rotary and Marla will make sure you get plenty of district cookies.

Anonymous said...

you do realise that pat sheilds is CEO of NPI, right?