Putting The Unified Back Into BOUSD.

BOUSD put Measure K on the ballot and all hell broke loose.

Proponents launched “Yes On Measure K” flooding neighborhoods and public thoroughfares with signs, mailboxes with oversized postcards, inserting themselves into our dinner hours with unsolicited robocalls. They hung out on street corners distracting traffic waving signs and passing out flyers, advocated boycotting downtown businesses with ill conceived letters accusing a local developer of buying elected officials and interfering in local politics and created a Facebook page where anyone with opposing views, contrary to the spirit of the first amendment, was blocked.

Opponents launched “No On Measure K” and prominently hung four giant banners and flooded public thoroughfares with signs, attended back-to-school nights and walked neighborhoods handing out flyers, hung out on street corners distracting traffic waving signs and passing out flyers and created a Facebook page challenging every message coming from the opposition.

A self-righteous bunch reactivated their “Reject Negative Politics In Brea” Facebook page and proceeded to attack every No on K sign, banner, flyer or attempt to get their message out. Their pro-K bias was blatant. They continued this masked propaganda until a couple of unattributed third party signs showed up that were truly negative politics. Only then did they suspend activity.

The BOUSD Board of Directors, especially the incumbents running for reelection, were notably silent though state law allows them to support the bond measure on their own time. Neither the Board or district staff conducted or participated in any public forum debating Measure K.

Both sides took to Nextdoor with posts about Measure K that became inflamed with personal attacks, unfounded allegations and unsupported assertions. Comments were repeatedly tagged for review when, as it turned out, the only offense was often the expression of an opposing opinion. Once friendly cyber-neighborhoods sharing coyote sightings, lost puppy alerts and selling used furniture, became bloody battlegrounds pitting neighbor against neighbor.

The “Yes On Measure K” Facebook page has now become “Take Brea Back” and the “No On K” page is now “Brea Watchdogs” – could they be any more divisive?

fb_savebreaTake Brea back from who? From that nasty ol’ developer hell bent on becoming the King of Brea? Exactly how does that benefit our kids or the BOUSD? (Ed Update: 11/29: The facelift continues, suggesting the group is formed “to provide information about local issues, concerns, elections and government activities that affect quality of life in the City of Brea.” – They have extended their ban prohibiting me from posting on their page.

fb_watchdogWatchdogs? Watching who? Watching what? I thought you promised to become part of the solution should Measure K fail to pass. Exactly how does perpetuating an adversarial stance benefit our kids or the BOUSD? (Ed Update: 11/29: Not to be outdone, the “Watchpuppies” group also claims to be an informational resource about local issues, particularly BOUSD. Like their nemesis Take Brea Back, they have also prohibited me from posting on their page.

Yesterday Joe Rollino resigned from the Board. Why? He already announced he would not be seeking reelection in 2018. Did he finish remodeling that beach house earlier than expected? Is there any chance Bill Hall might take the easy way out too?

Would Rod Todd dare apply to fill the vacancy after failing to get reelected? If Jason Kraft and Joseph Covey both apply to fill the vacancy, who does the Board select… the candidate with the most votes? What if a new name gets tossed into the ring?

On par with unfunded pension liabilities, putting the “unified” back into BOUSD is the top priority. Not how many apartments should Hines be entitled to build. Not how to rein in the loose canon on city Council. Not term limits, tiered water rates, parking citations on trash day, where to put a porkchop on a country road, Brea Envisions struggle for relevance or how to preserve those damned hills everyone is so up in arms about.

Its the preservation of Brea’s most valuable assets. Our kids and the BOUSD.

unified BOUSD

 

Election 2016.

Election 2016Election 2016 is the year that ugly came out. For a city to become so divided, so uncivil, so unwilling to rationally approach the facts when the future of several generations is at stake is unconscionable. I have to own my share of that, a shamefully large number of my friends and neighbors do too.

I needed to say that. No one is off the hook… no one. Some, from both sides, crossed lines that ought never be crossed. Shame on you. You’re insensitive halfwits with no concern for any point of view but that Bizarro world you live in.

Here’s a thought for you… when a tree falls in the forest, it does of course, make a sound… because, you need to realize, it is not all about you.

My position on Measure K has been pretty clear – No. Measure L deserves mention as well, reduce school board from 7 to 5 members – Yes.

Moving on now…

Election 2016Having kicked this around with friends and after harassing Marty for over a year, I decided to vote for Marty SImonoff for an unprecedented sixth term. For many reasons, volatility in local politics, economics, development and population, we need a strong rudder on the ship of state. I believe Marty, along with support from Glenn Parker, thanks to their history and wisdom, give us that trustworthy guidance.

Election 2016Four years ago Christine Marick and I found ourselves more at odds than not. Like many, I felt the dysfunction poisoning Council and staff either sucked Christine into it’s vortex or was too loud for her to shout over. Regardless, Clean Sweep cleared her way to become a strong, well seasoned member of Council. Watching her rise to the challenges earned Mayor Christine Marick my vote.

Election 2016Winning a seat on Council again in 2014, Glenn Parker created an opening for City Treasurer. By Council appointment, this was filled for many months by Bill Christensen who resigned for personal reasons a few months ago. Again Council made a very short term appointment of Rick Rios to complete the term.

Rick decided to run for the office challenged by Planning Commissioner George Ullrich. Having a history of sorts with both, having looked their credentials over very closely and sensing what I believe their motivations to be… my confident vote is for George Ullrich.

Election 2016In my blog back on October 6th, “Measure K: The Pros & Cons” I expressed my support for Jason Kraft and Paul Ruiz for the BOUSD Board of Directors. Their campaigning since clearly shows they have a better grasp of what faces Brea schools today and how best to address the academic, infrastructure and financial challenges that threaten the district than any incumbent seeking another term.

Election 2016The only thing thats changed is that I have also decided to vote for Joseph Covey to fill the third slot. Joseph and I share opposing views on Measure K but he has demonstrated a much better grasp of the district’s priority issues and is better prepared than any incumbent to be a problem solver.

Election 2016: Closing thought.

As Dennis Miller says, “That’s my opinion and I’m sticking to it.”

I’m not suggesting you adopt my choices but that you invest the time and energy needed to make a considered vote as well.