Is levy too much of a burden for taxpayers? A different perspective

Dear Editor
 Recently published in this publication was a view regarding the upcoming school bond to replace the current track and field at the high school. It is my opinion that the view had very little to do with financial concern for local citizens and much more to do with politics.
 While it is true that the current economic condition is particularly challenging for many if not all, that same condition is equally challenging for our local school district. This makes budgets for both households and local government entities a challenge. Regardless of recently passed school funding legislation, funding will be based on student numbers making budgets for smaller school districts still tenuous.
 While it was noted that planning seven years ago was insufficient, it is my opinion that lack of planning was not the issue but more an attempt to make that levy more palatable for taxpayers. Over the years, I have seen fundraising efforts deliver a new pole vault pit, hurdles, and high jump pit. All extremely expensive items. Interestingly, no other school sport facilities have used fundraising to fully fund their existence. Nearly every student in the school will use the track facility for physical education during fair weather. Additionally, I would like to point out that the track and field program has had many individuals donate both their valuable time and dollars. 
 Finally, I would like to address the importance of all students having the opportunity to compete in a high school sport. Peer reviewed research points to the fact that competing in sports builds many positive attributes to young adults participating; building confidence, sportsmanship, and the ever-valuable ability to interact with one another. Over the years, I have personally seen the local high school track and field program be the most inclusive sport offered at the high school level. Currently the program serves approximately 75 students of a varying range of abilities – giving all an opportunity to participate.
 The most crucial point would be to check your facts: reach out to the individuals who can answer your questions. Reach out to the school district superintendent and trustees; reach out to those involved with the track and field program. Ask questions. Do not just take the opinions of those who are completely uninformed, but of those who are knowledgeable. 
 Pay it forward as the generation before us. My vote is yes!
Gina Applegate
Weiser, Idaho


Signal American

18 E. Idaho St.
Weiser, ID 83672
PH: (208) 549-1717
FAX: (208) 549-1718

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