The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

October 23, 2012

Too many questions about Sidney project

The Daily Star

---- — Aside from a brief article Sept. 26 and one other newspaper’s article, and a vague mass mailing, very little information has been disseminated to all residents regarding a district vote in Sidney Central School. A $7.7 million capital project is proposed along with a $1.5 million capital reserve fund. There have been no public presentations specifically dedicated to this vote, no public question-and-answer sessions and no line-by-line budget.

Therefore my questions are: Why does the district continue to “focus” on a new athletic field defeated by voters last year when academically the district has now descended to the bottom 10 percent of the state with two “focus” schools, with the district identified as a “focus” district by the state Department of Education? What does “install new athletic fields” mean? Is it the “artificial turf” defeated by voters last year that is being banned state by the state and worldwide because of hazardous health and environmental issues? Is it natural grass turf? Why don’t the figures add up? Is the athletic field $3 million or $5 million? Are we paying for artificial turf with a life expectancy of 8-10 years with a 15-year bond? Is the $1.5 million capital reserve being set aside for $122,500-$130,000 annual maintenance of artificial turf? Why has an already-defeated proposal been bundled with other proposals?

The district had until today to present detailed information, not an “overview,” to all district residents. Did it happen?

When Sidney was an academic leader in the state, a legendary Sidney math teacher once taught his students “Pie are squared. No, pie are not square. Pie are round.” What a great math lesson and life lesson. Voters should be informed before they vote. Each and every resident is entitled to detailed information.

Patricia Smith