Disquieting vote for the school district’s capital budget proposal

Manuela Michailescu

As published in Blue Stone Press, December 21, 2018 issue, page 15

To the Editor:

Thanks to the coverage in Blue Stone Press – November 16, 2018 issue, page 12, “RV school district hosts public Q&A for capital budget proposal” – it became clear to those who could not attend that public meeting held on November 8, that:
— there was no hard copy of the proposal available upon request before that meeting;
— there was no itemization in the proposal (readily available at that time);
— the school district seemed determined to pass this budget no matter what (no plan B was presented and the answer to the question regarding the proposal not passing was “we’ll put the project back up for another vote”).

Most residents were not aware of this vote, unusually scheduled for December 11, in the middle of the holiday season. The school district did its best to burry in its mailer, under the many details of needed repairs, the most important information, regarding the “stadium” – a new artificial turf multi-purpose field lighted for night games, hosting events and generating revenue.

And now about the real problem…

After 17 years of voting in the area, I cannot recall any instance when there were NO LISTS of voters’ names and addresses, and NO IDENTIFICATION of those coming to vote. I definitely remember that I was identified in the past when voting at the school; I had to present a photo ID or proof of residency, and the signature was also matched with the one on record.

Now, it looked like anybody was able to vote and be included in the total number of 1,327 voters. The result was very close, 685-Yes and 642-No.

How was the validity of the votes checked? How were the voters’ names matched with the addresses declared? Answers are needed because, even if the Board of Education adopted a legal voting alternative, it did not feel right to me and many of those who voted!

The opportunity for fraud is obvious as NO CONNECTION can be made between a sheet of paper considered “ballot” and the voter; how can voters be sure that “No” votes were not replaced with “Yes” votes?

In my opinion, RVCSD made a mockery of the voting and lost people’s trust in the school voting process.

Manuela Michailescu
Kerhonkson

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