Are Dirty Politics at Play with the Special Election for the NCSD Bond?


Did the Natrona County School District #1 Board of Trustees set up a quasi PAC to campaign for their -May 6th 2014- special election?

Read about the special election here

Read the breakdown of monies allocated to Natrona County Schools here

Paula Reid, Treasurer of the NCSD #1 Board of Trustees

Paula Reid, Treasurer of the NCSD #1 Board of Trustees

Well, considering the address [611 Shannon Dr. Casper, WY 82609] on the mailers being sent out to Natrona County residents from “Citizens for Strong Natrona County Schools”, is that of the Treasurer of the NCSD #1 Board of Trustees, Paula Reid one would think so.

But the mailers coming from Paula Reid’s residence aren’t the only thing that is questionable.

Take a look at the following post from the Natrona County School District Chronicle:

 

Follow the PAC Money:

Citizens For Strong Natrona Schools is the political action committee (PAC) organized by Natrona County School District Board of Trustees to campaign for the bond measure. According to their campaign contributions receipts report they have received $37,760 in contributions, as of April 28th. Here’s the breakdown:
• 8 of 9 Board Members ($1,000 ea.) – $8,000
• NCSD Administrative Staff & Former Trustees – $4,750
• Individuals (20) – $5,026

Board members, administrative staff and two former trustees contributed $12,750 which is 72% of contributions. An additional $5,026 or 28% was contributed by only 20 individual citizens totaling $17,776 in contributions from “individuals”. 

Sixteen businesses and organizations contributed a total of $19,910. 
• George K. Baum & Company Denver, CO – $5,000
• Casper Swim Club Casper, WY – $4,500
• Architects, Contractors & Suppliers (14) – $10,410

George K Baum & Company is the investment banking firm that will underwrite the bond if approved. Lending money is obviously an incredibly lucrative business! It is also interesting that four of the businesses including the primary architect and general contractor reported their office as being outside the state of Wyoming.

The report also records $74 in “pass the hat” contributions. That seems a feeble amount for a PAC that promotes itself as a “citizen group” for the enhancements. By our calculation only 13% of the total contributions came from individual private citizens. Ponder this information and consider two questions before you vote:
1. Should NCSD Administrators and Trustees be this heavily involved in political action rather than educating students?
2. Where are the citizens behind this heavily financed façade of signs, mailers and propaganda campaign?

The PAC wants you to believe that “everybody” is voting for the bond. Don’t be fooled, the real majority does not support the PAC. Join the crowd; Vote FOR Accountability – Vote No on May 6th! Please Share with your Natrona County Friends.

 

The bottom line is, if this bond is really that great, and really truly needed, why not wait until the general election just 6 months away?

NCSD thinks you and I don’t realize that there is historically VERY low voter turn outs to special elections… And in Natrona County, most polling places are at schools. The teacher’s union already came out in favor of the $33 million bond, and union members won’t even have to leave work to go vote.

This special election is riddled with conflicts of interest. This is cronyism at its finest, and it is under the guise of “it’s for the children.”

Currently, Natrona County schools are in the 44th percentile when it comes to school performance in Wyoming. Natrona County currently spends more per student than any other district in Wyoming, AND Wyoming spends more per student than any other state in the Union and yet Wyoming has some of the worst performing schools in the country.

That being said, if money translated to better education, then Natrona County, WY should have the BEST schools in the entire country, yet they aren’t even in the top 50% of schools in Wyoming, a state ranked 35 out 50 when it comes to school performance.

A low voter turnout is expected. It is crucial that Natrona County Voters educate themselves fully on this issue and weigh it against the suspicious manner in which this special election is being carried out.

This may be a special election but it is just as important as the general election. Make sure you make time to vote on Tuesday, May 6th [from 7 am-7 pm]. You can find information on absentee voting here, voter registration [in Wyoming you can register to vote on Election Day], and find your polling location here.

 

Click here to see who Natrona County School District Bond website lists as following people as “directors”

Contact these Natrona County legislators and ask them how they feel about this bond issue and the special election:

gerald.gay@wyoleg.gov; steve.harshman@wyoleg.gov; kendell.kroeker@wyoleg.gov; Tom.Lockhart@wyoleg.gov; Bunky.Loucks@wyoleg.gov, Tom.Reeder@wyoleg.gov; Tim.Stubson@wyoleg.gov; Tom.Walters@wyoleg.gov; jameslee.anderson@wyoleg.gov; Bill.Landen@wyoleg.gov; Drew.Perkins@wyoleg.gov; Charles.Scott@wyoleg.gov

 

These elected Natrona County School District #1 Board of Trustees members need to be held accountable.

 

Dave Applegate, Chairman

821 S. Beech StreetCasper, WY 82601

234-8975 (home) 258-0406 (cell)

david.applegate@anadarko.com

**** Term Expires 2014 ****

 

Elizabeth Horsch, Vice Chair

4425 Coates RoadCasper, WY 82604

235-5895 (home) 472-5427 (fax) 262-6177 (cell)

ehorsch@wyoming.com

Term Expires 2016

 

Paula Reid, Treasurer

611 Shannon Drive Casper, WY 82609

265-0021 (home) 262-3875 (cell)

preidtrusteencsd@hotmail.com 

Term Expires 2016

 

Rita Walsh, Clerk

136 E. 15th StreetCasper, WY 82601

235-3587 (home) 262-8303 (cell)

rwalsh@bresnan.net

**** Term Expires 2014 ****

 

Kevin Christopherson

2063 Skyview DriveCasper, WY 82601

234-0711 (home) 235-3367 (work) 267-6908 (cell)

kevinch@tribcsp.com

Term Expires 2016

 

 

David Driggers

3720 Aspen Place

Casper, WY 82604

337-3112 (home) 337-7382 (cell)

driggers9@msn.com

**** Term Expires 2014 ****

 

Dana Howie

1428 S. Elk Street Casper, WY 82601

234-2824 (home) 267-4162 (cell)

danahowie@msn.com 

Term Expires 2016

 

Pat Keefe

1214 Granada Casper, WY 82601

235-1945 (home) 473-5616 (work) 277-9931 (cell)

patkeefe@bresnan.net 

**** Term Expires 2014 ****

 

Suzanne Sandoval

5320 S. Oak St.Casper, WY 82601

259-2221 (cell)

sandovalsuzanne@gmail.com

**** Term Expires 2014 **** 

 

Read about the special election here

Read the breakdown of monies allocated to Natrona County Schools here