http://pleasantonweekly.com/print/story/print/2013/01/11/letters


Pleasanton Weekly

Opinion - January 11, 2013

Letters

U.S. vs. Hirst

Dear Editor,

In the interest of accuracy and fairness it should be noted that the plea agreement from which your newspaper took virtually all of its Jan. 4 article ("Pleasanton attorney admits forgery, lying to IRS") contemplates punishment of six months home detention, a fine of approximately $30,000 and that I retire from the practice of law. This is a far cry from the maximum punishment which you reference on two occasions in your article.

It is also relevant that there was no tax loss to the government nor did I profit by so much as a nickel. Further, nowhere in the plea agreement is the word "forged" or "forgery" used. The sentence will be imposed on April 19 after the probation process is completed.

William A. Hirst

Our many amazing administrators

Dear Editor,

As a Pleasanton resident for 45 years with six children who graduated from Pleasanton schools and grandchildren currently attending, I have been happy with the district, especially the teachers who are innovative and dedicated while enduring the pressures of parents and a central office that expects high performance. However, lately I am less than enamored of the school board and superintendent's cabinet. While teachers, classified and custodial staff haven't had a raise in five years, they granted Luz Cazares, Assistant Superintendent, Business Services, an enormous raise, a retirement boost, and virtually a lifetime dental, health and vision package.

Jeff Bowser, Chris Grant, Joan Laursen and the cabinet must live on a different planet than the rest of us. The rumor was that San Ramon Unified, a district of equal excellence, might snatch Luz up if we weren't careful. Seriously? If Luz resigned, Pleasanton would have hundreds of applicants. There is no shortage of amazing administrators seeking work in districts like ours. Thankfully two members of the school board have sense and integrity -- thank you, Jamie Hintzke and Valerie Arkin, for holding your ground. When are the others up for re-election?

P.S. PUSD should have defended Amador Valley Principal Jim Hansen's wise decision to not allow students to have their gratuitously idiotic pictures in the yearbook. Why fear the ACLU? They were wrong. Being in the yearbook is a privilege for students who actually attend Amador, not a venue for former students to be cute and/or look like imbeciles. They can post that stuff on Twitter or Facebook.

Ben McEntee

Comments

Posted by Jill, a resident of Birdland
on Jan 11, 2013 at 2:32 pm

Great letter to the editor from Ben McIntee.

Ben says "Jeff Bowser, Chris Grant, Joan Laursen and the cabinet must live on a different planet than the rest of us. "

Totally agree.

What we have now is the fox guarding the hen house. Two of "those foxes" terms are up in 2014. We need to make sure some concerned residents run for those seats. Once we replace one or both of the foxes with somebody from this planet,Jamie and Valerie will have the extra vote(s) needed to return the control of the district back to the residents. Until then, the district will do whatever they want, no matter what the residents think. Should the current fox control try to vote on additional administrator contracts like this, we need to start a recall process. I am afraid that the foxes will be approving very lucrative contracts for their friends before they leave office, including clauses that cost the taxpayers a lot of money to fix.