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Joan Laursen-Talks about Donating to School Board Candidates at PUSD Board Meeting

Original post made by Unbelievable, Another Pleasanton neighborhood, on May 10, 2011

I just listened to the school board meeting that is live on TV and Joan Laursen said something along the lines of "You will be asked to donate to School Board Candidates" on the televised PUSD board meeting a few minutes ago.

I have watched many meetings on TV and have never heard anyone using public meetings in Pleasanton as a forum to solicit donations for their political campaign.

Why are elected officials using public air time on TV when they are supposed to be discussing official business? Do they think they are at a campaign gathering? What is next? Will they pass the hat around the audience?

Secondly, did the APT contract just get approved with NO furlough days so that the cuts in pay last year will be restored because there will be no furlough days? How much more will teachers be paid ($2000, $3000, ?) this year than last and how many millions more will it cost the District? If the District is in such a financial crisis, why did the tentative agreement for teachers get approved with no furlough days?

Comments (13)

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Posted by HopLee
a resident of Ponderosa
on May 11, 2011 at 12:01 am

Unbelievable asks, "If the District is in such a financial crisis, why did the tentative agreement for teachers get approved with no furlough days?"

Um, maybe because there are rational, clear thinking people who refuse to be bullied by a handful of semi-literate ignoramuses?


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Posted by steve
a resident of Parkside
on May 11, 2011 at 7:30 am

Hey, hop--so much for pitching in to cut costs and help balance the budget. Once again, you can all spot who the leftists are that post on this website. The M.O. is to attack and belittle people they don't agree with and then resort to name calling. Hop---time to get off the computer and go to school and let the adults take over.


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Posted by John
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 11, 2011 at 8:33 am

And now we have a new police chief who is going to cost us all millions of dollars in retirement and refuses to take a 10% pay cut. The arrogance of all government is disgusting.


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Posted by Don't Twist Words
a resident of Amador Estates
on May 11, 2011 at 9:13 am

That not what she said. She was thanking the community of Pleasanton for all of their donations for a variety of school related causes: Measure G, Measure E, CORE, PTA, and school board candidates.


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Posted by Lemoine Ader
a resident of Lemoine Ranch
on May 11, 2011 at 9:28 am


If Unbelievable and Steve and John say it, it must be good as gold. Don't Twist Words shouldn't let the facts get in the way.... Really? That's not what Ms. Laursen said?


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Posted by Unbelievable
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 11, 2011 at 11:44 am

The meeting was repeated on TV and it is during the CSEA union tentative agreement agenda item.

Laursen starts talking about running for office, getting endorsement meetings with the union, getting endorsement meetings with the Chamber of Commerce and being out in the community. She then says she is blunt and says you will be asked to donate to your schools, you will be asked to donate to school board candidates, you will be asked to donate to CORE, you will be asked to donate for a new parcel tax.

It has nothing to do with thanking people.

Look for yourself at the conclusion of the agenda item on approving the CSEA union tentative agreement. Toward the end of this agenda item, Mr. Faraghan spends several minutes going over the process, Ms. Hintzke asks questions on how the board is involved in collective bargaining process and says she believes the district is not following the board policy as written and that the board was not allowed to provide input on what positions should have been brought back; therefore, the board was not allowed to give input on priorities. It is right after that which was right before the motion to approve the CSEA union contract.


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Posted by I Looked Too
a resident of Downtown
on May 11, 2011 at 11:53 am

Unbelievable is so right. I mean, when Laursen says to the audience that they're going to be asked to donate to different causes and candidates, who but an absolute moron would see that as anything but a blatant underheaded way of using a public forum in order to fleece unwitting tax payers. It's so obvious. Can't you see it? What? No? Okay. Sorry for wasting your time.


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Posted by Start Afresh
a resident of Country Fair
on May 11, 2011 at 3:54 pm

Joan was creating the story where many in the community are contributing to the schools and candidate campaigns, as a way of putting the CSEA furlough days into context. Blunt? Yes. But nothing sinister there. I just wish she would get blunt about the structural costs of seniority based layoffs, longevity salary increases and lack of effective performance evaluations and merit pay. And start *real* change.


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Posted by Pernell
a resident of Ponderosa
on May 11, 2011 at 7:50 pm

Yeah, Start Afresh, but you sure know as well as anybody that there's lot's of sinisterism at work the way they didn't tell seniors about excemptions and gave all the teachers' back they're furlough pay with raises attached. You have to read between the lines and find the truths of the manner. Teachers don't know anything about performances and money and regressivism.. Its' up to us to educate them about our money. *Real* changes begins with the people.


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Posted by Mike
a resident of Highland Oaks
on May 11, 2011 at 9:05 pm

As I believe many suspected in the months leading up to the vote, the battle cry of "Kids First" really meant "Pay Me First!"

Not that I am against getting what you can come pay day, mind you. It's just that I have never liked Doublespeak translations of "self-interest".


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Posted by Mather
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 11, 2011 at 9:33 pm

"all the teachers' back they're furlough pay with raises attached."

That is a complete lie. There were no raises attached. That is a falsehood.


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Posted by Unbelievable
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 11, 2011 at 9:46 pm

The teachers will not be having five unpaid furlough days, like they do now, for the upcoming school year.

They did not agree to any furlough days. Given the school district did not seem to press for furlough days, seems like this so-called crisis in funding was all in their imaginations. If there was a real crisis, they would have forced the APT to agree to five furlough days.

So the teachers will be paid for five extra days the next school year, which means their salaries will be about 2.8% higher for the next school year.


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Posted by Sandy Piderit
a resident of Mohr Park
on May 12, 2011 at 12:44 pm

I attended the meeting and I believe that Unbelievable took Joan Laursen's words out of context. She was telling a story about conversations she had with community members last fall. She was absolutely not asking for donations to any election campaign that is currently under way. (Her term does not end until late 2014, and the next election for school board candidates does not start until the fall of 2012.)

Unbelievable is correct that the tentative agreement with APT that was approved on Tuesday night does not include any furlough days for teachers.

The big IF in the tentative agreement is that negotiations between APT and PUSD, and between CSEA and PUSD, will automatically reopen immediately if the state cuts Pleasanton's revenue limit by more than $399 per student for 2011-2012.

The governor is scheduled to release his May revision of the proposed state budget this coming Monday, May 16. There will be more information about whether negotiations will reopen at the next board meeting on Tuesday, May 24.

I'm expecting that it will happen and furlough days will be considered. That's just my prediction, nothing firm.


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