Writer: Schools always want more
The ink on Gov. Ralph Northam’s proposed biennial budget had barely begun to dry when the Virginia Educators United released their press release claiming that the $1.2 billion increase in state public education funding “falls far short of what is desperately needed.”
Touted by the governor as the largest ever increase in public education funding in Virginia’s history, this organization proves what most of us already know: That no matter how much money is spent on public education, they want more.
In Lynchburg alone, the governor is proposing a $3.3 million increase in state funding for 103 fewer K-12 enrollments. This, without any local funding increase, would raise the LCS budget more than 3 percent and, coupled with the declining enrollments of 1.3 percent fewer students, means a 4.3 percent increase in per pupil expenditures. Not bad considering my Social Security check will be increasing 0.9 percent next year.
Calling educators’ compensation “a disgraceful situation,” the VEU “is demanding a 20% increase in pay.” And just to prove it is not about caring for the children, the VEU is demanding “that Virginia must stop aiding in the attempts to privatize our public schools and create proactive policies to protect us in the future.” Furthermore, “restoration of collective bargaining rights should serve as a highly attractive strategy for policymakers in Richmond.”
So, as the state moves to eliminate the right to work provisions that have allowed Virginia to be one of the best states for business, be prepared for collective bargaining, teacher union strikes, runaway school expenditures and even less teacher accountability.
Make your voices heard
Are your Second Amendment rights and your voice in the City of Lynchburg being swept under the rug? Well, it sure seems that way.
City Council voted 4-3 in favor to hold a public hearing for you to speak about your Second Amendment rights. Shame on the mayor and the city manager for refusing to hold the public hearing in a facility large enough to accommodate the hundreds planning to attend the Jan. 14 hearing. Overflow rooms in City Hall with big screen TV’s? Really? What about the elderly, the handicapped and those who cannot walk blocks to park their cars? This simply is not fair and will not work.
This is a public hearing, and the citizens of Lynchburg deserve the opportunity to be heard in a fair and accommodating manner. Almost every city, town and county in Virginia has declared themselves a Second Amendment Sanctuary except Lynchburg. The time is now for your voices to be heard, and it is only fair for the City Council to provide a facility large enough for their citizens to speak. Please contact your City Council members and voice your opinion.
Lynchburg is “A great place to live, work and play.” We would like to keep Lynchburg “A safe place to live, work and play”