'Facts' warrant defeat of Lindbergh's Prop A
March 23, 2005 - To the editor:
Lindbergh School District CFO Pat Lanane's statement that homeowners may pay more taxes if they don't vote yes on Prop A's 65-cent tax hike reminds me of the telemarketer who called our home to sell a $29 million dollar vacation time-share in a "soon-to-be-built'' condo in the Florida Everglades.
He said if I would send him a blank check, he would fill it in for a lower amount, but I would have to hurry as prices were sure to go up.
The voters of south county know that a tax increase means money out of their pocket no matter what. Regardless of who is taxed or how the tax is collected, it is the consumer that pays that tax. The Proposition A tax increase could mean more than $29 million dollars out of the pocket books of Lindbergh residents over the next five years.
The facts are clear. Lindbergh maintains one of the largest reserve funds in the state, a whopping $22.25 million dollars of taxpayers' money that is not being used for education. That's 120 percent more than recommended by the Missouri State Teachers' Association.
Lindbergh claims to have the "lowest tax rate,'' but fails to tell you that they have one of the highest assessed property values per student.
While median household income has de-clined by 3.1 percent since 2000, Lind-bergh has the highest administrator sal-aries of their benchmark districts — an average of $96,820 each with the superintendent's salary increasing 34.2 percent to $157,500 for the same period.
I asked the telemarketer if he couldn't find more honorable work than conning people out of their money and he said, "I am trying hard to reform.
"After all, I used to be a school district administrator.''
James Smoot, chairman
for Responsible Education