School leaders concerned about tax proposal bill which would prohibit providing ballot info to voters

A sign hangs in the door of an Armada school days before residents approved a bond issue in November. Under the new law, placement of such signs or distribution of literature within 60 days of a ballot proposal could be outlawed. (Digital First Media file photo)

By Frank DeFrank
frank.defrank@macombdaily.com

Legislation that would prohibit school districts and other public bodies from disseminating information about tax proposals within 60 days of the vote was panned recently by school and government officials.

Michigan’s election laws prohibit the use of tax dollars to advocate a position on bond issues, millage proposals and other tax-related ballot proposals.

But school districts, municipalities and other entities historically provide information about the upcoming election to voters. The new law would require that practice be halted two months before the vote.

Proponents contend its passage will prevent overzealous public bodies from trying to influence voters.

“We already have laws that prohibit us from using public funds for propaganda,” said Stacey Denewith-Fici, superintendent of Warren Woods Public Schools. “(The proposed law) would make it illegal to share factual information. Why would we not want voters to have factual information?”

Many of Denewith-Fici’s colleagues voiced similar concerns, some in pointed language.

“It’s a sad day when we cannot send unbiased, factual information to our constituencies,” said Ron Roberts, Chippewa Valley superintendent. “It’s un-American.”

Lakeview Public Schools Supt. Karl Paulson was even more harsh in his criticism. He called the measure an attempt by the “one-party, central government in Lansing … to have a desire to control all aspects of the local systems of government.”

The proposed law flies in the face of wide-sweeping efforts in recent years to provide residents more transparency about their government, said David Richards, Fraser superintendent. Continued…
Attached to an unrelated bill, the legislation was passed by both the state House and Senate. It now awaits the signature of Gov. Rick Snyder.

Michigan’s election laws prohibit the use of tax dollars to advocate a position on bond issues, millage proposals and other tax-related ballot proposals.

But school districts, municipalities and other entities historically provide information about the upcoming election to voters. The new law would require that practice be halted two months before the vote.

Proponents contend its passage will prevent overzealous public bodies from trying to influence voters.

“We already have laws that prohibit us from using public funds for propaganda,” said Stacey Denewith-Fici, superintendent of Warren Woods Public Schools. “(The proposed law) would make it illegal to share factual information. Why would we not want voters to have factual information?”

Many of Denewith-Fici’s colleagues voiced similar concerns, some in pointed language.

“It’s a sad day when we cannot send unbiased, factual information to our constituencies,” said Ron Roberts, Chippewa Valley superintendent. “It’s un-American.”

Lakeview Public Schools Supt. Karl Paulson was even more harsh in his criticism. He called the measure an attempt by the “one-party, central government in Lansing … to have a desire to control all aspects of the local systems of government.”

The proposed law flies in the face of wide-sweeping efforts in recent years to provide residents more transparency about their government, said David Richards, Fraser superintendent. Continued…

 

Source: School leaders voice concerns about tax proposal bill – News – Source Newspapers

Advertisements

So… manspreading, presser, vape and other words on 2015 Banished Words list

So, Lake Superior State University has started a conversation with stakeholders of the English language. The university has identified a a number of other problematic words… follow the link to read the entire list.

Source: Manspreading, presser, vape on 2015 list of Banished Words | Michigan Radio

Michigan Radio reports that some Republican lawmakers want another road funding battle in 2016 

Some Republicans in the state Senate want to throw out the road funding plan lawmakers passed in 2015 and replace it in 2016.

A new proposal in the Senate would repeal a $1.2 billion funding plan that squeaked through the Legislature just a couple months ago. It would instead raise Michigan’s sales tax rate from six percent to seven percent and dedicate all the new revenue to roads.

Read more about the plan here: Some Republican lawmakers want another road funding battle in 2016 | Michigan Radio

Sorry NYTimes. We’re Onto You.

Emily Talmage who blogs under the moniker SAVE MAINE SCHOOLS posted this morning (Dec. 31, 2015) that this date the New York Times published an editorial claiming that our high school diplomas are meaningless.

Oh how I just wish I had a subscription so I could cancel it.

Go here for her entire post and try not to throw up on your device’s screen: Sorry NYTimes. We’re Onto You.

Posted on December 31, 2015

Will Universal Background Checks Solve The Problem Of Gun Violence? It’s A Start.

by mikethegunguy

According to rumor, the White House will shortly close a legal loophole that currently lets a large number of guns move from one set of hands to another without a background check.  Evidently Obama will issue an EO that redefines what it means to be a gun dealer by substantially reducing the number of private transfers that can be made, thereby forcing gun owners to acquire a federal license which will effectively require that every gun transfer beyond a minimum number go through a NICS-background check.

Which brings up the ultimate question, namely, if we had universal background checks, what would this mean in terms of reducing gun violence overall?  Right now the CDC tells usthere are 30,000+ intentional gun deaths and 65,000 intentional gun injuries every year.  There are also 17,000+ unintentional gun injuries, fatal and non-fatal, each year.  We can probably discount most, if not nearly all unintentional injuries because they usually involve the legal owner of a gun and/or his/her children or friends.  We can also discount the 20,000+ suicides, which leaves somewhere around 75,000 acts of gun violence each year for which, in theory, universal background checks should help reduce the toll.  But by how much?

In fairness to the researchers who are concerned with this problem, they were not trying to figure out the impact of universal background checks per se.  Webster and Wintemute have come up with a very comprehensive summary of research on…

Source: Will Universal Background Checks Solve The Problem Of Gun Violence? It’s A Start.

CURMUDGUCATION blog repost: Why Do the Feds Heart Testing?

A grumpy old teacher trying to keep up the good classroom fight in the new age of reformy stuff.

Why Do the Feds Heart Testing?

It has been a fact of educational life for so long, that we don’t take the question out and ask it much any more, but really–

Why is there a federal requirement to give students a standardized test?

Why has that provision, that requirement, that burden been given the weight of federal regulation? Even as ESSA tore down and ripped up many pieces of federal oversight and regulation, that provision was never in doubt. At best, for a while, there was hope that the testing requirement would be reduced, but nobody ever thought that the federal requirement to make give students a standardized test would go away. And it didn’t.

But why? Why does the federal government believe that an important national interest is served by testing every American school student, year after year?

For the rest of this post go here:

CURMUDGUCATION: Why Do the Feds Heart Testing?

The Washington Post Does A Story About Gun Violence And Gets It Wrong Again … mikethegunguy blog repost

The Washington Post Does A Story About Gun Violence And Gets It Wrong Again.

by mikethegunguy

This is not a column that I am going to enjoy writing but what follows still needs to be said. And although I am going to appear to be very critical of law enforcement in the commentary that follows, please take my word for it when I say that I am extremely pro-cop.  And the reason I am very supportive of the men and women in blue is that I have witnessed on numerous occasions their willingness to be the first ones who rush into a location when God knows what is behind that closed door.  But nevertheless I still believe that what follows needs to be said.

To read the rest of this post go here: The Washington Post Does A Story About Gun Violence And Gets It Wrong Again. | mikethegunguy

Making a fresh start in 2016? Make sure you get covered: enroll in health insurance by Jan. 31 | (Eclectablog repost)

Enroll in health insurance by January 15 for coverage that starts February 1. The new year is a time for new beginnings — or at least thinking about them. If you’re considering starting…

Source: Making a fresh start in 2016? Make sure you get covered: enroll in health insurance by Jan. 31 | Eclectablog

New Year’s Resolution: YOU OWE YOU

Thought about making any resolutions for 2016? You know, most resolutions turn into excuses within days or weeks or months. Don’t make any resolutions you already know cannot keep until first you decide what do you want out of your life.

And as Dr. Eric “ET” Thomas, MSU alum and education professor says in this short video… that’s what you can do… earn each day, week, month, year. Earn it for yourself. Not for anyone else.

As Thomas says, you owe yourself that much. No excuses.

Then wake up every day, day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, waking up and going after it… whatever IT is.

You owe yourself at least that much… to know what you want for your life… not just for 2016 but for the rest of your life… day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year for as many days, weeks, months and years as you can earn for yourself.

Know what you want.

What do you want in your life?

In your relationships? In your family? In your job and career? In your health?

My resolution which I made a few months ago was, at this stage of my life, health related… to be as healthy as I can be by never again being an “unconscious eater” – to be conscious of and completely understand that “I am what I eat” and when I looked at myself and my weight and my overall health I really had become what I was eating.

I’ve been overweight and on all sorts of medications most all of my adult life. Part of me had resigned myself to being husky as boy, big and tall as a man. Big boned – what a joke. What a loser I’d become. I had my own culture of being a loser and not a winner. I had all sorts of excuses for myself. I let myself down over and over again, when I deserved better for myself.

But after watching two videos – Dr. Eric Thomas (educator, motivational speaker) and Dr. William Davis (cardiologist and Wheat Belly Diet author) I resolved that I wanted to wake up everyday being conscious of what I was going to put into my body whether I was making my own meal, eating something someone made for me or ordering a meal in a restaurant.

And that’s what you can do… EARN each day, week, month, year. Really. Earn it. You owe yourself that much.

Don’t make ANY resolutions until you know what you want for yourself. Just do the work – as “ET” says, do the “grind” – demand the most of yourself and stop letting yourself down – do what you know you need to do.

For me it all starts with a formula for my health… “grains-be-gone + sugar-be-gone = weight be gone” … and as it turns out “meds-be-gone” too!

I owed me… you owe you.

DR. ERIC THOMAS | YOU OWE YOU

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Oxz060iedY

Mister Journalism…2015 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,300 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 38 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.