Letter: Make an informed decision: can you afford $16 million more?

To the Editor:

Do you remember being at the checkout when a young child has a temper tantrum because the parent said “no” to the demands of the child for a treat they want, while the parent is trying to avoid the embarrassment of an ‘out of control’ child in public? Many times the parent will give in, handing the child the treat and saying, “now behave, okay?” Over time, the child will learn to have a tantrum to get the treat they want. The only real solution becomes a firm “NO” with consistent follow-up. When parents take a firm stand and mean “NO” when they say it, balance is restored between parent and child. Peace and harmony at the checkout line is restored.

Likewise, the voters, the “parents” of the Columbia Heights School District, will find themselves again at the checkout counter on Nov. 7, 2017 with the “child,” aka the district, with unrealistic wants; demanding another $16 million after already receiving $10 million in 2014. We have been here far too many times before, too timid to say “NO” when “NO” is exactly what is needed. Restoring the balance of power between voter and school district requires long range vision. The voter needs the courage and strength of character to back up a verbal “NO” with consistent action. A “NO” requires the wisdom to distinguish between one’s wants and needs.

As a public education supporter, community leader, parent, grandparent, and a principled constitutionalist, I will be voting “NO” regarding the $16 million Columbia Heights School Bond Referendum. There are times when being a voter requires tough decisions. Will you join me in a “NO” vote on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017?

Tim Utz
Columbia Heights