Many Poway citizens recently received a mailer from Poway Unified School District regarding how the district ought to prioritize funding for school improvements. The mailer announced that PUSD was considering placing a new local bond measure on the March 2020 ballot, hoping to generate $448 million to “repair and improve local schools.”
Though the initiatives mentioned appeared wholesome at first glance, the proposed $448 million seems like a hefty sum, especially considering the fact that the district is already quite well-funded.
However, bigger questions were raised under the headline of “Strict Financial Accountability.” The first claim vaguely suggested that oversight, independent audits, and a detailed project list would “ensure the money is spent as promised.” But we’ve heard this before—vague explanations have been made by union-based organizations over seemingly “needed” funds to exploit taxpayers in the past.
Doing things “for the kids” is always a surefire way for institutions to get money, and citizens should be mindful of this typical money grab when examining school-related bond measures. Nobody wants to watch schools go without the funding they need, but everyone should be aware of the difference between necessary and discretionary spending.