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  • Tuesday, May 24, 2016

     

    PETITION DENIED for PANORAMA HEIGHTS

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD      
    a news service of
     Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    Panorama Heights transfer petition denied by Orange County Committee on School District Organization
    The Petition to transfer the Panorama Heights neighborhood to Tustin Unified was denied by the  Orange County Committee on School Organization (OCCSO) after holding two Public Hearings on the proposal on Tuesday May 17th.  Only six of the eleven committee members were present and voted at the two public hearings.

    The Orange Unified School Board had overwhelmingly voted at their May 26, 2016 meeting to oppose the petition (Trustee Mark Wayland was the only OUSD Trustee in favor of allowing the transfer) after the OUSD staff's fiscal report on the potential revenue lost to OUSD with the Panorama Heights transfer was $404,797 annually.

    In the first Public Hearing presented at the Orange Unified District Office, the three petitioners, Marlene Graham, Katie Mayberry and Jennifer Lampman  gave a PowerPoint presentation to the  OCCSO arguing that the transfer would unite the Panorama Heights neighborhood with the Tustin community and allow the neighborhood children to attend school together. They also argued that the community identifies with the youth, religious, and retail institutions in Tustin.

    OUSD's legal representative Spencer Covert presented OUSD's case to the OCCSO. In his PowerPoint, Covert reviewed the financial impact on OUSD including the impact to the district's declining student enrollment.   Using an excerpt from a realtor's video ( CLICK ON: Panorama story with video )  the committee members were shown how close the neighborhood is to OUSD's Panorama Elementary School and City of Orange retail areas.  Covert presented arguments why the proposed transfer failed five of the 9 criteria that must be met as required by the California Education Code for a transfer: Criteria 2 (substantial community identity); Criteria 3 (equitable division of property and facilities); Criteria 6 (distribution of educational programs); Criteria 9 ( a negative financial impact); and Criteria 8-that the petition was designed to primarily increase property values.*

    *One of the petitioners- Jennifer Lampman is a realtor that does business in the area. 
    (Click on: Jennifer Lampman Realtor)

    After the OUSD presentation, Tustin Unified Superintendent Dr. Gregory Franklin reported that Tustin Unified took a neutral position on the transfer.    

    Fourteen people spoke during public comments for the first hearing.  Eight in favor, three against and three from a neighborhood known as  Lower Panorama Heights that asked to be included in the original petition for transfer.  The petition to transfer to Tustin Unified would create an OUSD territorial island of Lower Panorama Heights within the Tustin Unified area. The Lower Panorama situation was the topic of questions from the commission.

    As required, a California Environmental Quality Act checklist was presented by the Orange County Department of Education staff and the requested transfer was found to have no adverse environmental impacts.

    In the second public hearing at the Tustin Unified District Office, the petitioners in their presentation added information about the proximity of the neighborhood to Tustin Unified Schools and how the OUSD busing is not needed because parents drive their students to school.

    Then OUSD attorney Spencer Covert addressed property values and  the three Tustin Bonds and the entrances and exits of the Panorama Heights neighborhood.  OUSD Assistant Superintendent Dr. Gunn Marie Hansen reported on the exemplary OUSD schools and programs.

    In their rebuttal, the petitioners again tied their petition to the neighborhood children and argued that OUSD's financial situation had not changed since 2012 when the Rocking Horse Neighborhood was allowed to transfer to Tustin Unified from OUSD.  Mr. Covert rebutted about the current OUSD financial situation compared to 2012 and the differences in the two transfer petitions.

    Questions from the commissioners included questions about interdistrict transfers, property values and the Lower Panorama Heights neighborhood.

    The Commission voted that three of the nine criteria were not met: Criteria 2 (substantial community identity) by a vote of 6-0; Criteria 3 (equitable division of property and facilities) by a vote of 4-2; and Criteria 9 ( a negative financial impact) by a 4-2 vote.

    With three of the nine criteria not met, the petition was denied.

    Inside the May 26, 2016 Agenda
    The Orange Unified School Board will meet on Thursday May 26, 2016 in a regular session.

    The Agenda includes:
    Killerfer Site items:
    Facilities Bond Update:
    Budget items:

    NEXT OUSD BOARD MEETING May 26, 2016
    Next OUSD Board Meeting -OUSD BOARD ROOM
    CLOSED SESSION- 5:30 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 7:00 pm
    For AGENDA-CLICK ON: OUSD AGENDA

      
    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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