Note: The Connecticut Media Group is not responsible for posts and comments written by non-staff members.

Boughton and city council are wrong to “punish” the board of education

City Council ad-hoc committee on school administrator salaries: 08.25.10

Cross post from HatCityBLOG

On Thursday, Mayor Boughton and the members of the city council plan to overstep their boundaries as elected officials by punishing the board of education for giving raises to four non union administrators.

The question isn’t whether the school board’s June 9th decision to give a 2.5 percent raises was responsible…as someone who’s still shaking his head over the board’s decision to give two principals a nine percent raise back in 2009. What’s outrageous is the fact that one separate body of government is taken upon itself to punish another separate body of government.

The mayor, city council, and board of education are separate bodies of local government elected by the people. After the city council reviews and approves the education budget, it is the board of education responsibility to spend the money in any way they want to choose. The mayor and/or city council DOES NOT have the line item authority when it comes to the board of education. In turn, the board of education does not have the authority to punish the city council when it comes to questionable decisions they make in terms of the overall city budget.

And in terms of the money the mayor is crying foul about…we’re talking about peanuts.

News-Times editorial 07.09.10:

The board had approved the raises for the schools superintendent, deputy superintendent, assistant superintendent and finance director at a June 9 meeting. The board revisited the decision at a June 24 meeting, and upheld it.

Schools Superintendent Sal Pascarella is offering to return his increase to the education budget, after he pays taxes, to be used for the new literacy center.

The net increase, without Pascarella’s raise, comes to about $10,000 in a $114.1 million budget.

Mayor Boughton’s suggestion, which was referred to committee last week by the City Council, amounts to posturing.

Remember, the mayor and members of the city council do not attend every board of education meeting, therefore, they have no knowledge of the day to day decision making by the board that goes into operation of the school budget.

For a part-time mayor that’s spent a majority of his time running for state office and a city council that has a LONG history of questionable spending decisions while turning a blind eye to accountability, this latest move is outrageous to say the least.

…to be continued.