[Vision2020] [Bulk] Re: Weitz Lawsuit: A Challenge

Jeff Harkins jeffh at moscow.com
Sun May 13 21:39:55 PDT 2007

M. Schou,

The actions of the MSD would appear to be unlawful.  Here is an 
excerpt from the relevant Idaho Statute (one of the many provisions 
that may apply in this dispute:

(5)  The board of trustees of any school district that has, for at least
seven (7) consecutive years, been authorized through an election held pursuant
to chapter 4, title 33, Idaho Code, to certify a supplemental levy that has
annually been equal to or greater than twenty percent (20%) of the total
general maintenance and operation fund, may submit the question of an
indefinite term supplemental levy to the electors of the school district. Such
question shall clearly state the dollar amount that will be certified annually
and that the levy will be for an indefinite number of years. The question must
be approved by a majority of the district electors voting on the question in
an election held pursuant to chapter 4, title 33, Idaho Code.

I, for one, do not condone the acceptance of an illegal act by a 
governmental entity, regardless of their motivation.  This taints the 
entire legal process and governmental structure.  If MSD wants a tax 
increase, do it correctly or don't do it at all.

And yes, I have been told that the district was well aware of the 
problems long before the levy and apparently decided to go ahead.  I 
trust that the truth of this will surface during the adjudication.

And yes, our community will now have a chance to consider the 
ramifications of the permanent levy in light of other governmental 
entities that have a need for public resources.  Here is something 
that you might want to ponder - given an annual increase of $ 
1,970,000 in the M & O levy for an indefinite period would tie up a 
total of about $40,000,000 in taxpayer resources.

The levy won by approximately 300 votes - certainly not a 
mandate.  And they won what appears to be an illegally conducted 
levy.  That is how you claim victory?

Last time I checked, local school districts are non-partisan elections.

And, please don't reduce your arguments with personal ad hominem 
attacks - you don't know me, I don't recall ever meeting you and I 
have never endorsed the laffer curve.  Keep that kind of nonsense out 
of our conversation (or let's not have a conversation) - focus on an 
adult discussion of the issues.  I am perfectly comfortable with 
discussing the issues - I am not at all interested in grovelling in 
the dirt with you.

At 07:52 PM 5/13/2007, you wrote:
>>  Weitz is to be commended, not vilified, for taking the first steps
>>necessary for us to engage in serious dialogue about our public
>>infrastructure investments - and to place the responsibility for those
>>investments where it belongs - with the taxpayers.
>In what world, Jeff, does seeking to overturn the will of the voters
>constitute "beginning a dialog"? One would expect that the dialog has
>already been had -- those seeking the levy won. It seems to me that
>conservatives are only in favor of frivolous lawsuits when it supports
>their faith that the fulcrum point of the Laffer curve is at 0%.
>-- ACS
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