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  • Tuesday, February 26, 2008

     

    Metro TALK -Florice Hoffman to hold an Ides of Fundraisers

    Metro TALK ______________
    A community service of the
    Greater Orange Communities Organization



    The Florice Hoffman for Orange Unified School Board Committee is hosting a March 15th fundraiser for the local community activist who has had her sights on an OUSD Trustee position. The Anaheim Hills resident had said she would run for OUSD Trustee Steve Rocco’s old OUSD Trustee Area 6 position. Now with the Nichols Trustee Area Realignment, Rocco has been voted out of his area into OUSD Trustee Area 7 (Trustee Rick Ledesma’s area). Still with us?

    While we are not sure which incumbent should beware the Hoffman Ides of March happening, local soothsayers unconfirmed reports have Hoffman buying a town home in the new Sun Cal development in Orange which would put her in OUSD Trustee Area 3, currently held by OUSD Board President Wes Poutsma. In any case (with apologies to Shakespeare):

    Friends, Greater Orange Residents, and countrymen, lend us your ear…
    Florice has been actively fundraising and plans to bury her opponent, not praise him!


    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION or to RSVP
    Florice Hoffman for Orange Unified School Board Committee
    Fundraiser March 15th , 2008 2 pm-4 pm
    714-282-1191


    Villa Park E.S. Historical Buildings Comment Deadline
    The deadline for written comments on the proposed demolition on the Villa Park Elementary School historical buildings by Orange Unified are this Friday February 29th. Written comments can be submitted to Michael Christensen at the Orange Unified School District Offices. For further information see the City of Villa Park website CLICK ON: VPES


    Friendly Fundraiser for Orange Senior Center
    The Orange Elderly Services Board will be holding their annual Friendly Fundraiser at Pat and Oscar’s at Main and Town and Country roads in Orange (across from Main Place Shopping Center). The Friendly Fundraiser is an easy place to meet local elected officials as well as the always active Orange Elderly Services Board. The Friendly Fundraiser will take place Wednesday May 7th, 2008 from 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm. Cost is $25 per person, $40 a couple. Please RSVP at 714-538-9633.



    Metro TALK is a community service of the
    : Greater Orange Communities Organization:
    :GoCo:

    Wednesday, February 20, 2008

     

    OUSD's Godley just doesn’t get it

    Metro Views
    Giving Voice to the Greater Orange Communities
    Viewpoints from the Greater Orange Communities

    Orange Net News /O/N/N/ Editorial:

    OUSD Superintendent Dr. Thomas Godley just doesn’t get it:
    No you’re not less of an employee…
    You are more of an employer


    In the Tuesday February 19th Orange County Register story, Buy out could aid Orange Superintendent, Orange Unified Superintendent Dr. Thomas Godley makes another one of his famous “me too” statements. The article quotes Godley’s

    “I am an employee of the district. Am I any less of an employee?"

    Dr. Godley just doesn’t get it. His is not less of an employee, but more of an employer. As the CEO of the district, his retirement announcement followed by a retirement buyout- seems a lot like insider trading. In addition, the fact that the buyout is being extended to persons with only five years of service with OUSD (Godley will have 5 years and four months at his June retirement) appears very self-serving. The information that the proposed OUSD Supplemental Retirement Plan would be extended to himself by way of a five-year minimum with the district is not in the Agenda Item. That part of the plan was kept secret but reported by Orange Net News and is now confirmed by Godley himself.

    Godley’s desire for us to believe his total lack of self-interest is incredulous. He also states in the same article:

    “We won't look at it individually by employee, We'll look at it as a group and see if it would be an overall savings.”

    As the district’s leader, and taking his newspaper comments into account, it is clear to us that Dr. Godley did look at an individual employee- himself! As the district leader, Godley decided who would be eligible for the Retirement Plan. The buck stops with Godley as he chases buck after buck of the OUSD taxpayers.
    In the article his Assistant Superintendent of Business Services states that under the proposal 300 employees are eligible. What makes them eligible is not reveled. How many of those employees are “Five year” employees and how many five year employees can really afford to retire after working just five years? Ninety eight employees are needed to make the plan work. It is apparent to us that 99% of those employees will be employees with many, many, many years of dedicated service to the Orange Unified community and we expect just ONE employee with five years of OUSD experience to take $15,000 extra educational tax dollars a year.

    In the Register article Godley is also quoted as saying:
    "I'm not asking for anything special," he added. "And if the district hires somebody below my salary, I could be a savings."

    Raise after raise, Godley pushed the bar of the OUSD Superintendent’s salary ever higher as the OUSD Board majority just last August voted to approve raises in order to keep Godley. As the OUSD Board extended Godley’s three year contract with a raise, they added extra bonuses (not performance based) like a 2% yearly automatic longevity raise. Then in September and December, Godley got “me too” raises after OUSD finished negotiations with the two employee unions. To now state that it would be a savings to hire the next Superintendent at a lower salary is a pompous and insulting statement to the Trustees who entrusted the financial well being of the Orange Unified School District to Godley and acquiesced to his continuous salary demands.

    The Orange Unified School Trustees should reject the five-year minimum requirement for the Supplemental Retirement Plan. If the plan is approved with the five year requirement, Orange Net News will for the years ahead will keep an ongoing monthly record of the $1250 a month benefit paid out to Godley under the plan.

    Let the OUSD Board know how you feel email them at
    board@orangeusd.k12.ca.us

    Community comments from OC Register/ OC Blog/ Orange Net News

    Katiel wrote: Shame on Doctor Godley. Wasn't it bad enough to give himself such a huge raise the beginning of the school year? Let us hope that the school board will do the right thing, because we can rest assure that Godley won't


    GoDucks wrote: The superintendent is being favored over lesser paid employees by using only 'final salary' to calculate the incentive. Using years of service as part of the formula or simply capping the incentive to something reasonable for the majority of the targeted employees makes more sense. Paying $15K per yesr extra to a relatively short tenured employee who is already planning to leave is embarrasing. And his comments are disingenuous. If the plan wasn't approved the district is just as likely


    ocdac7 wrote: Let's see what our 'populist' board member Rocco think of this.

    cook said: Apparently Rocco is the only one of the board trustee’s who can see the grand theft going on with baseless wages increases and pension spikes, and I thought that SAUSD was screwed up.

    redperegrine said: It is ironic that the Board can be sooooo embarrassed by Rocco - and will swallow anything else.


    Eric Wrote: Please take back Godley's money. Pay no handshake under 10 years' service and only to teachers. There is no money for highly paid officials.


    For the Orange County Register Story on Godley CLICK ON:
    OC Register


    For the Orange County/ Red County Blog Story on Godley CLICK ON:
    OC BLOG

    For the Orange Net News story CLICK ON: ONN

    Viewpoints from
    Orange Net News____________

    Metro VIEWS
    is an open forum to express viewpoints on local Greater Orange issues.
    Views expressed in Metro VIEWS are not necessarily the views of the NETWORKS that ECAST or post them.

    Tuesday, February 19, 2008

     

    In justifying Taxpayer Handout Godley declares: "I am an employee of the district."


    Orange Unified Schools INSIDE SPECIAL REPORT
    a news service of Orange Net News /O/N/N/

    In justifying Taxpayer Handout Godley declares:
    "I am an employee of the district. Am I any less of an employee?"


    An Orange County Register story reports that Orange Unified Superintendent Thomas Godley is fighting for the lifetime 6% retirement buyout: “Godley said Tuesday that he should be considered for the benefit.”

    The story quotes Godley as follows: "I am an employee of the district. Am I any less of an employee?" he said. "We won't look at it individually by employee, we'll look at it as a group and see if it would be an overall savings.”

    The story goes on to quote long time Godley supporter Trustee Kathy Moffat:

    “Trustee Kathy Moffat said she still needed to study the plan before Thursday's vote, but defended the idea.
    "We are facing major budget crises," she said. "Every district should be looking at ways such as this to save money and ease the pain."


    Moffat’s declaration of a “budget crisis” comes despite her votes over the last three months of pay increases to Godley, teachers and administrators. The OUSD Administration provided documentation to the Board for each of the raises that they could afford the pay hikes.

    In the same article, OUSD Assistant Superintendent of Business Services is attributed with the following bleak budget prognosis:

    The district might be forced to slash its budget up to $13 million next year if the governor's statewide education cuts move forward, said Jon Archibald, assistant superintendent of business services.


    To read the OC Register Story:
    Buyout plan could aid Orange Unified superintendent
    District officials say it could save money overall;
    critics wonder about its timing.

    CLICK ON: OC Register Godley

    This SPECIAL REPORT produced by
    /O/N/N/
    Orange_NetNews@yahoo.com
    “Independent, Local, News and Viewpoints”

    Ecast on the
    INTERNET COMMUNITY GROUP i/))) cg
    A 21st Century Communications System
    Produced by the
    Orange Communication System /OCS/

    Sunday, February 17, 2008

     

    OUSD Superintendent Godley’s salary will go from Good to Great

    Metro Views ____________
    Giving Voice to the Greater Orange Communities
    Viewpoints from the Greater Orange Communities

    OUSD Superintendent Godley’s salary will go from Good to Great with a “Golden Handout” from OUSD Taxpayers

    Imagine after working in the private sector for only 5 years, accumulating six retroactive raises (four in the last six months), then after announcing your retirement giving yourself a 6.5% bonus for the rest of your life. A similar too-real-to-believe scenario is being played out right now in Orange Unified as Orange Unified Superintendent Dr. Thomas Godley, who announced his retirement just two weeks ago, this week tries to push through a Supplemental Retirement Plan for teachers and administrators who have only put in five years of time as employees of the district. We believe it is not a coincidence that sources report only five years of employment with the district will be needed to take advantage of the up to a 6.5% bonus payment for life. Godley will have just over five years as an OUSD employee as of his June 30th, 2008 retirement date. The Orange Unified School Board is scheduled to vote on this Golden Handout paid for by the taxpayers of Orange Unified at this week’s Thursday February 21st OUSD Board Meeting.


    The Supplemental Retirement Plan on the agenda is commonly known as a “golden handshake”. The bonus idea is to save money by enticing older long term staff (who have the highest salaries) to retire early and replace them with younger less expensive employees. The plan , Agenda Item 12 C, is a vaguely worded agenda item that is short on facts and details. Similar plans have been offered in the past to save money, but those plans targeted long-term dedicated OUSD employees who have given a lifetime of service to the children and community of Orange Unified. Offering them a retirement “buyout” was fiscally and ethically responsible and a win-win proposition. Those early buyout plans were not proposed for the benefit of any particular employee. To now present a plan that gives almost $15,000 a year bonus for life to Superintendent Godley, who only worked for OUSD for a little over five years, is not a golden handshake, but a golden handout courtesy of the Orange Unified taxpayers. Allowing Godley, who has announced his retirement, to now make the Supplemental Retirement Plan apply to him is not a buyout, but a sell-out of OUSD taxpayers.


    When the current majority of the OUSD Board was elected in the Orange Recall, the very first action of these Board members was to rescind the golden parachute granted in an eleventh hour vote by the outgoing defeated Board Trustees to top OUSD Administrators who were complicate in OUSD’s Lost Years. For these same OUSD Trustees to now capitulate to a bureaucratic golden handout would be nothing short of hypocritical and nothing short of fiscally irresponsible with the educational tax dollars they are entrusted with.

    Clearly the majority of the OUSD Board was happy with the performance of Dr. Godley. He knew that and received raise after raise, praise after praise. The OUSD Board extended his contract just last year and compensated him for staying. Clearly this Board was played as Godley will not stay. It appears to us the Board realized that they had been played just two weeks ago when they sat stone faced during Godley’s retirement announcement.

    Are Supplemental Retirement Plans a wise budget move? In the past they have proven to be so, however to now offer a plan to employees that have only worked for the district for five years is clearly a bureaucratic budget ploy for one last raise for the outgoing Superintendent courtesy of the children of OUSD.

    The Greater Orange Community Organization urges a responsible Supplement Retirement Plan to save money and reward long term employees for their dedication to the OUSD Community, not what amounts to a life-time retirement bonus for Superintendent Godley.

    A five year employment requirement for a Supplemental Retirement Plan is a thinly veiled Godley Golden Handout to reward a brazen budget manipulator (how many other five year employees will retire?). If the so called OUSD Godley Majority approves a Supplemental Retirement Plan with a minimum five year employment requirement it will not just be hypocritical, it will be fiscally irresponsible.

    We know that the OUSD Board still listens to the public.
    To weigh in on this issue email your opinion to the OUSD TRUSTEES at:
    Board@orangeusd.k12.ca.us

    Viewpoint from
    The Greater Orange Community Organization

    Metro VIEWS
    is an open forum to express viewpoints on local Greater Orange issues.
    Views expressed in Metro VIEWS are not necessarily the views of the NETWORKS that ECAST or post them.
    GreaterOrangeCO@gmail.com
    Orange Communication System /OCS/

    Saturday, February 16, 2008

     

    GODLEY TO RETIRE...NOW IT’S GOLDEN HANDSHAKE TIME !

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    a news service of Orange Net News /O/N/N/ Independent insight into OUSD

    GODLEY TO RETIRE...
    NOW IT’S GOLDEN HANDSHAKE TIME !

    Two weeks after announcing at the February 7th Orange Unified School Board meeting that he will be retiring as of June 30, 2008, Orange Unified School Board Superintendent Thomas Godley’s administration will be presenting a Supplemental Retirement Plan to be voted on at the February 21, 2008 OUSD School Board meeting. The Supplemental Retirement Plan (commonly referred to as a “golden handshake”) is agenda Action Item 12c (page 11) and states:

    “The plan provides an enhanced retirement benefit for those employees who elect to retire June 30th, 2008. the basic benefit is estimated to be 6.0 to 6.5% of the employees final salary schedule placement (depending on the final plan design) divided by 12 paid monthly for life.”

    Sources close to the OUSD Administration report that the Supplemental Retirement Plan will be structured to award the lifetime 6 to 6.5% extra pay to any OUSD administrator or teacher who has been with the district for 5 years or more. At his retirement date in June, Godley will have been with the district just over 5 years.

    Godley made his official announcement of his pending June 30, 2008 retirement in the Closed Session of the February 7th OUSD Board meeting. Less than an hour later in Open Session, Godley read from a prepared text outlining his retirement as a somber OUSD Board listened. The five member majority of the OUSD Board (known as the Godley Majority) that routinely heaped mounds of kudos on the Superintendent while giving him raise upon raise in the preceding months leading up to the retirement announcement was unusually quiet. Shortly after Godley’s announcement Trustee Kathy Moffat, one of Godley’s most outspoken supporters, excused herself from the meeting stating that she was ill.

    With tension obviously high among the Board members, during the meeting’s Board Recognition of the Community segment, Godley nemesis Trustee Steve Rocco asked to speak and was quickly verbally trounced on by Board President Wes Poutsma and Trustee Kim Nichols who tried to deny Rocco a chance to speak on a procedural rule during a typical protracted Rocco introduction to his topic. However, the two trigger-happy trustees then had to eat crow as the often controversial Rocco this time only spoke about his attendance at the City of Santa Ana’s Martin Luther King Day parade celebrating Black History Month and encouraged all to attend the parade next year. The seemingly expected Rocco rubbing-of–the-salt-into-the-Godley’s-leaving-wound never materialized.

    The next day Friday February 8th, Godley was previously scheduled to address a gathering of 140 Orange Unified teachers and administrators at the controversial William Daggett Consultant two-day teaching conference in San Diego (OUSD taxpayers footed the bill for over $20,000 on hotel rooms alone not counting conference fees, mileage and other costs, but that’s another story). At the early morning OUSD only meeting, Godley announced his retirement (the story had already been broken by Orange Net News the night before) and also announced the June retirement of OUSD Assistant Superintendent for Educational Services Dr. Ken Jones.

    If approved by the OUSD Trustees this week, the “golden handshake” Supplemental Retirement Plan could add close to $15,000 a year to Godley’s retirement pay (at the 6% rate). In June 2006, Godley received a 4.75% retroactive raise. Then in August 2007 the next pay hike for Godley put his salary over $242,000 annually and included an unprecedented automatic 2% annual longevity raise, and a yearly $2500.00 bonus for having his doctorial degree, in addition that pay hike was also retroactive.

    Next, the Godley Majority gave Godley a 3.5 % pay hike in the Superintendent’s salary with all other district administrators at the December 13th , 2007 Orange Unified School Board meeting just four months after the unprecedented pay hike to Godley’s contracted salary. That retroactive pay hike of 3.5% went to July 2007, one month before the August retroactive pay hike.

    Then at the January 17th, 2008 meeting, Godley asked the OUSD Board to approve another .25% retroactive raise for the district administrators. The Godley Majority again voted to grant the raise. Following that raise at the last Board meeting Godley announced his retirement, now at this Thursday’s meeting the OUSD Administration will ask for the 6-6.5% “golden handshake” plan for this year’s retirees which if approved will give Godley another 6-6.5% lifetime pay hike for only five years of service to the Orange Unified School District.

    Watch for the Orange Net News special news series called:
    The Godley Years: From Good to Great?

    Moffat Wrong Again
    In December 2007 an indignant OUSD Trustee Kathy Moffat bristled at the fact local Villa Park citizens were tipped off to OUSD plans to demolish the historic landmark buildings at Villa Park Elementary School by “a blog”. As Moffat denied that OUSD intended to demolish the buildings, she announced “the blogs are wrong again”. Orange Net News quickly responded to Moffat’s misleading statements with an editorial: OUSD TRUSTEE KATHY MOFFAT WRONG AGAIN.

    Now two months later the local print media is printing what Orange Net News first reported back in December, OUSD is planning to demolish the historic buildings. Will Moffat also announce to the community that the main stream media is wrong also?
    To see the main stream media stories on VPES historic demolition CLICK ON:
    OC REGISTER VPES and
    OC REGISTER HISTORIC BUILDINGS


    INSIDE the OUSD Budget
    “We’re a $220 million dollar business; we’re going to spend the money somewhere.” -OUSD Trustee Wes Poutsma 9/22/05

    INSIDE’s EDUCATIONAL
    TAX DOLLARS WATCH 2008:
    $300,000 Total
    2008 Attorney Fee Tally:
    2/07/08 Parker & Covert $100,000
    11/15/07 Parker & Covert (for 1/08 to 6/08) $200,000
    $300,000

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2007: $704,090.00
    2007 Consultant/ Speaker Fee Tally:
    4/30/07 Debra Ford Speaker Fee $ 4,090
    4/30/07 Danny Brassell Speaker Fee $ 3,500
    3/8/07 Dr. Daggett Speaker Fee $ 9,000
    9/27/07 Dr.Daggett Speaker Fee $ 35,000
    11/15/07 OCDE High Priority Consultants $115,000
    Total $166,590

    2007 Attorney Fee Tally:
    1/18/07 Parker & Covert (1/07 to 6/07) $175,000
    (6/07-12/07) $200,000
    2/08/07 Miller, Brown, and Dannis $ 7, 500
    2/22/07 Parker & Covert $ 45,000
    5/10/07 Miller, Brown and Dannis $ 50,000
    7/19/07 Parker & Covert $ 60,000
    Total $537,500

    2007 Administrative Conference/Travel: hidden since 6/8/06*

    *JUNE 8th, 2006 Trustees VOTE to Give OUSD Superintendent the power to APPROVE Travel Requests taking this item OUT of the PUBLIC AGENDA

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2006: $849,717.00*
    2006 Consultant Fee Tally: Total $176,400
    2006 Attorney Fee Tally: Total Approved $655,000
    2006 Administrative Conference/Travel: Total $ 18,317 *
    * JUNE 8th, 2006 Trustees VOTE to Give OUSD Superintendent the power to
    APPROVE OUSD Travel Requests taking this item OUT of the PUBLIC AGENDA
    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2005: $978,300.00:
    Total 2005 Conference Administrator/Board Fees: $ 7,500.00
    2005 Attorney Fee Tally: $730,600.00
    Total Watched 2005 OUSD Consultant spending: $ 270,200.00


    Next OUSD Board Meeting
    Thursday February 21, 2008. For more information
    CLICK ON: BOARD AGENDA 2/21
    OUSD CLOSED SESSION STARTS 6:30 PM ,
    Regular Session: 7:30 pm
    For more information call the OUSD Superintendent’s office at 714-628-4040

    For budgeting questions call Business Services at 714-628-4015

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD
    is an independent news service of /O/N/N/

    Orange_NetNews@yahoo.com
    “Independent Local Insight”

    Ecast on the
    INTERNET COMMUNITY GROUP i/))) cg
    A 21st Century Communications System

    Wednesday, February 13, 2008

     

    Orange’s youth deserve an A on tobacco restrictions

    Metro Views _____________:GoCo:
    Giving Voice to the Greater Orange Communities
    Viewpoints from the Greater Orange Communities

    Orange’s youth deserve an A on tobacco restrictions

    This week, thanks to the enforcement efforts of the Orange Police Department the City of Orange received a “C” in its efforts to enforce laws that restrict tobacco sales to young people. While a “C” appears a weak grade, compared with other Orange County cities the average C was way above average for the American Lung Association of California State of Tobacco Control local report card. However, Orange youth deserve the city receiving an A in enforcement efforts.

    It should be noted that the tobacco enforcement efforts were not rated average (called PC 308 sting operations) , it was the lack of commitment of the local ordinances and revenue support that held the grade down. The report stated about Orange’s efforts:

    Police Department does perform PC 308 stings. An ordinance that instituionalizes such checks and provides revue for them will be required to maintain or improve the grade in the future.

    A clear model for a community commitment to the problem can be easily found next door in Santa Ana which was the only Orange County city receiving an “A” in preventing Youth Access to tobacco.

    Orange has world class hospitals (including one for children), a world class university, and nationally recognized tourist and shopping destinations. Orange should be just as proud to have a nationally recognized effort to prevent youth access to tobacco abuse. Now is the time for our city leaders to take the steps to make Orange a leader in the health of our young people because a failing grade on this report card really is really failing our children.


    The Greater Orange Community Organization________

    ALSO SEE…
    ORANGE P.D. helps city earn C grade in tobacco rating CLICK ON: ORANGE PD GRADE

    Metro VIEWS
    is an open forum to express viewpoints on local Greater Orange issues.
    Views expressed in Metro VIEWS are not necessarily the views of the NETWORKS that ECAST or post them.

    Tuesday, February 12, 2008

     

    ORANGE P.D. helps city earn C grade in tobacco rating


    Metro TALK ______________:GoCo:
    A community service of the
    Greater Orange Communities Organization




    ORANGE P.D. helps city earn C grade in tobacco rating

    The Orange Police Departments enforcement stings using youth decoys (PC 308 stings) to enforce state tobacco sales laws helped earn the City of Orange a “C” grade in the annual American Lung Association’s Tobacco Control report card.

    The annual American Lung Association of California State of Tobacco Control local report card was presented this week at a news conference in Los Angeles. Cities were graded based on what local ordinances or policies had been passed in five categories (recreation areas, outdoor dining, entryways, outdoor service areas, multi-unit housing) and tobacco retail licensing ordinances aimed at reducing illegal sales of tobacco to minors. Orange’s future rating is dependent on the city instituting an ordinance to institutionalize the Orange P.D.’s efforts. Other Greater Orange communities did not fare as well. Villa Park and Anaheim both received “F” grades. One bright spot in Orange County was Santa Ana with efforts to curb youth smoking receiving an “A”.

    However Orange, Villa Park and Anaheim all received a zero and an “F” grade for the secondhand smoke rating labeled “smoke free air”. In Orange County, only the city of Laguna Beach earned an overall “C” grade for both categories. In a press release, the American Lung Association stated that some communities have adopted smoke free outdoor ordinances, including parks and dining areas, but protections are still lacking for the hundreds of thousands of Southern California residents who live in multi-unit housing. Secondhand smoke can cause heart attacks, lung cancer, emphysema, and asthma. For elderly citizens, especially those with chronic diseases like diabetes and heart or lung conditions, even small amounts of secondhand smoke can delay their healing and/or sicken them. In apartment buildings, up to 60 percent of the air in each unit is from other units.

    To view Orange County city tobacco scores CLICK ON:
    ORANGE COUNTY GRADES

    Thursday, February 07, 2008

     

    OUSD SUPERINTENDENT announces Retirement

    SPECIAL REPORT
    Godley Announces Retirement

    Orange Unified Superintendent Dr. Thomas Godley announced his retirement effective June 30th, 2008 at the February 7th, 2008 OUSD School Board Meeting. Godley's choice as OUSD Superintendent without interviewing other candidates was one of the first splits in the Citizen's Board that was elected after the Orange Recall. The OUSD Board Trustees later split into the so called Godley Majority and minority members that split over issues such as the Santiago Charter Revocation, legal fees, budgeting priorities, and pay hikes to the Superintendent. Despite two back-to-back school bond measures being defeated, a school modernization program has been underway under the Godley administration.

    Godley used a business model approach to finishing a district-wide streamlining started by his predecessor Dr. Robert French. Godley's Good to Great business model was never fully implemented and became merely another abandoned slogan as he and the Godley Majority on the Board continued to deal with the election of the controversial OUSD Trustee Steve Rocco.

    Orange Net News will continue its exclusive coverage of the Orange Unified School District with a special review of the Godley Years in upcoming reports.

    Monday, February 04, 2008

     

    VOTE!


     

    Voting Options for Decline To State voters

    Decline to state (also known as non-partisan) voters may request a Democratic Party ballot or American Independent Party ballot at the polling station.

    If they do no ask for one of those parties, they will be issued a non-partisan ballot that contains only state propositions and local measures and contests.

    Orange County Registrar of Voters Neal Kelley issued the following statement:

    “We want to make sure voters understand what their options are if they have decided to register to vote without a Party affiliation," said Neal Kelley, Registrar of Voters. “We have educated voters through direct mailers and their sample ballots, but many do not realize their options until they arrive to vote,” he continued.

    The polls open tomorrow at 7:00 a.m. and close at 8 p.m.

    Sunday, February 03, 2008

     

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    a news service of Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    Independent insight into OUSD

    OUSD opens a semantic can of worms about the
    Legislative Coalition…

    “If it isn't broke, don’t try and fix it”
    -Orange Unified Trustee Rick Ledesma comment on
    Legislative Coalition reclassification 1/17/08


    The Orange Unified School Board spent most of the January 17th meeting discussing and apparently agreeing that Orange Unified’s unique Legislative Coalition Committee would continue to operate as it is with just a semantic name change. The change was to a Citizen’s Advisory Board from the long standing moniker of “a Committee of the Board”. The OUSD Administration position was that under the OUSD Board policies the designation of “a Committee of the Board” did not exist. During the discussion, long time community activist and Legislative Coalition member Christina Bayles addressed the Board asking whether Board Policy could be updated to specifically pertain to the Legislative Coalition’s unique status since the Board Policy outlining Citizen’s Advisory Boards appeared to her not to exactly fit the way the current Legislative Coalition Committee works. A longwinded response from OUSD Superintendent Dr. Godley seemed to imply that the OUSD Administration was sticking with the Citizen’s Advisory title and was not interested in another policy change.

    While most of the OUSD Trustees and OUSD Superintendent Dr. Godley continued to insist that the change was semantic in nature only, Trustee Rick Ledesma asked that the “human side” of the situation to be considered. Ledesma pointing out that he has not always agreed with the Legislative Coalition and that many members of that group also worked against him in the last election, however despite differences, he stated he strongly supported the mission of the Legislative Coalition and pointed out that the committee had empowered many community members to involved with OUSD. Ledesma called for the Board to hold an informational meeting with Legislative Coalition members to communicate fully about any questions or concerns the committee members may have over the redefinition. Ledesma pointed out he understood the administrative reasoning, but countered there was a “human side” to the situation that he felt needed to be addressed fully. Trustee John Ortega agreed with Ledesma and tried to separate the Legislative Coalition item from the other committee items in the long discussed motion. Board President Wes Poutsma denied Ortega’s request as Poutsma tried to move the meeting along. After almost 40 minutes of discussion, Poutsma’s ruling to limit debate came under fire from Trustee Kathy Moffat who stepped up to defend Trustee Lissa Smiths’ right to chime in after Smith had accidentally been over looked by Poutsma. In the end, the vote for the confusing motion was an unusual 4 yes (Moffat, Nichols, Smith and Poutsma) and three abstentions (Ortega, Ledesma and Rocco). However, it wasn’t over yet. Ledesma’s explanation of his vote to abstain (he felt an Information Item involving the committee was needed before a vote on the Action Item) became another point of a contention from Moffat who apparently took exception to Ledesma’s vote explanation as a criticism of the process.

    VILLA PARK E.S. HISTORIC BUILDING DEMOLISHMENT EIR
    The public hearing for the Villa Park E.S. historic buildings Environmental Impact Report will be Wednesday February 13, at 7:00 pm at Villa Park Elementary School. This is another step towards the OUSD Staff goal of demolishing the historic buildings. The December 13, 2007 OUSD Board Agenda (page 30) stated:

    “Two buildings remain from the original school on Villa Park Elementary School campus. The buildings have been determined to be structurally unsafe. They are vacant and have been fenced off to prevent unauthorized entry. Because the buildings are unfit for occupation and represent a safety hazard, they should be demolished as soon as possible”.

    Other January 17th meeting items
    Agenda Item 12 C - pay hike for OUSD Administrators PASSED 4-2 Yes-Moffat, Nichols, Ortega, Smith and Poutsma. No- Ledesma and Rocco
    Agenda Item 13 A- Independent Audit Report on OUSD’s finances view this on line: CLICK ON: OUSD AUDITS

    Agenda Item 13 B-
    Year 2/ 2nd Quarter Status of Three Year Strategic Plan
    This report led to a discussion of the problem of rejecting outdated and incompatible technology donations from well meaning community members and how explaining why the district cannot accept the donations is a delicate matter that needs to be communicated and explained in an inoffensive way.
    Consent Item 14 D - $7,500 more to the Center for Demographics PASSED 6 Yes, 1 No (Rocco)

    AGENDA REVIEW: February 7th,
    2008 OUSD Board Meeting

    Action Item 12 B (page 9): forming a District Advisory Committee to recommend disposal of surplus real property. The seven members will be: Diana Flores, Jan Miller, John Miller, Jim Reichert, Dan Slater, William Steiner and Ann Truex .
    Consent Items (page 50): law firm of Parker & Covert $100,000 to “assist the District in litigation of ongoing special education matters”.

    Community DONATIONS: Dirt Devil Vacuum to Canyon H.S. from Garth and Victoria Webber; Printer and Scanner to Villa Park H.S. from Kerry Wright; Running Springs PTA- $12,000 for Smart Boards; Yorba PTSA-$500 for Top Torro T-Shirts; Canyon H.S. Band Boosters- $6140 for stipend; Olive PTC- $402 art supplies; El Modena ASB- $1651 for salary support. For a complete list of Community DONATIONS see the OUSD Agenda pages 16-17.


    INSIDE the OUSD Budget
    “We’re a $220 million dollar business; we’re going to spend the money somewhere.”
    -OUSD Trustee Wes Poutsma 9/22/05

    INSIDE’s EDUCATIONAL TAX DOLLARS WATCH 2008:
    $300,000 Total
    2008 Attorney Fee Tally:
    2/07/08 Parker & Covert $100,000
    11/15/07 Parker & Covert (1/08 to 6/08) $200,000
    TOTAL $300,000

    INSIDE’s EDUCATIONAL TAX DOLLARS WATCH 2007:
    $704,090.00 Total
    2007 Consultant/ Speaker Fee Tally:
    4/30/07 Debra Ford Speaker Fee $ 4,090
    4/30/07 Danny Brassell Speaker Fee $ 3,500
    3/8/07 Dr. Daggett Speaker Fee $ 9,000
    9/27/07 Dr.Daggett Speaker Fee $ 35,000
    11/15/07 OCDE High Priority Consultants $115,000
    Total $166,590

    2007 Attorney Fee Tally:
    1/18/07 Parker & Covert (1/07 to 6/07) $175,000
    (6/07-12/07) $200,000
    2/08/07 Miller, Brown, and Dannis $ 7, 500
    2/22/07 Parker & Covert $ 45,000
    5/10/07 Miller, Brown and Dannis $ 50,000
    7/19/07 Parker & Covert $ 60,000
    Total $537,500

    2007 Administrative Conference/Travel: hidden since 6/8/06*

    *JUNE 8th, 2006 Trustees VOTE to Give OUSD Superintendent the power to APPROVE Travel Requests taking this item OUT of the PUBLIC AGENDA

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2006: $849,717.00*
    2006 Consultant Fee Tally: Total $176,400
    2006 Attorney Fee Tally: Total Approved $655,000
    2006 Administrative Conference/Travel: Total $ 18,317 *
    * JUNE 8th, 2006 Trustees VOTE to Give OUSD Superintendent the power to
    APPROVE OUSD Travel Requests taking this item OUT of the PUBLIC AGENDA

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2005: $978,300.00:
    Total 2005 Conference Administrator/Board Fees: $ 7,500.00
    2005 Attorney Fee Tally: $730,600.00
    Total Watched 2005 OUSD Consultant spending: $ 270,200.00

    Next OUSD Board Meeting Thursday February 7, 2008.
    To view the agenda CLICK ON: AGENDA

    OUSD CLOSED SESSION STARTS 7:00 PM , Regular Session: 7:30 pm
    For more information call the OUSD Superintendent’s office at 714-628-4040
    For budgeting questions call Business Services at 714-628-4015
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