|BANNER ADVERTISING PAYS ONLY FOR WEBSITE
**********A Most Worthy Cause...************
Friends of the Lakeshore Library
7346 Highway 261
Buchanan Dam, TX 78609
April 5, 2000
We would appreciate a donation toward a new building for the Lakeshore Library, an extremely worthy project for our community.
As you probably know, Lakeshore Library is in a dilapidated facility which is about half the size needed for our community. Our Librarian is unable to accept donated books unless she removes current volumes. The meeting room (which facilitates elections, various clubs, exercise groups, fund-raising projects, etc.) has increased tenfold in usage during the past five years.
The Friends of the Lakeshore Library is an IRS-approved non-profit group devoted to the development of the library, your donation is tax deductible.
The "Friends" group was formed from the original volunteers who repaired the present building and interested patrons of the library and meeting room. The Friends have raised money for maintenance and improvement of the building and are currently involved in various fund-raising activities to see this need fulfilled. Llano County Commissioners are financially unable to assist in this endeavor and have rejected plans to build an addition to the current building. The Commissioners say, quite correctly, that the building is in such deplorable condition that no add-on would be wise.
We can all pull together and accomplish this goal. Please write a check today and mail it in the enclosed envelope. The Pledge form enables you to remember loved ones or you might want to honor someone for their anniversary, birthday, etc.
Young or old, we need our library. Learning should be a lifelong experience.
Friends of the Lakeshore Library Building Fund
Llano Independent School District
200 East Lampasas
Llano, Texas 78643
March 10, 2000
Mr. Tim Chorney
Rt. 2, Box 464A
Buchanan Dam, Texas 78609
Dear Mr. Chorney:
I received your letter dated February 29, 2000, and am pleased that you have accepted the invitation to tour our schools. We will be available on Thursday, March 23rd at 1:30 p.m. When planning your schedule, please allow approximately 30 to 45 minutes for the tour.
We look forward to meeting with you and showing you our facilities and needs for the future growth of Llano I.S.D..
Jack Patton, Superintendent
200 E. Lampasas
Llano, Tx. 78643
Tim Chorney, Publisher
The Llano Ledger
Rt 2 Box 464A
Buchanan Dam, Tx. 78609
Re: Published Response
February 29, 2000
Dear Mr. Patton:
Thanks for your quick response to my earlier letter of Feb. 18. I published your letter of Feb. 25 as well as a full response to your questions in the February 28, 2000 Newsletter edition.
It can be found on _The Ledger website by clicking on Newsletter Text V29. You'll also find a "few" questions of my own for you. If you care to respond, I'll certainly publish your remarks in their entirety without editing.
I accept your gracious invitation to visit LISD facilities. Would you kindly personally conduct the tour, please? Besides clearing the air, it will give us a chance to chat, and more importantly, provide an opportunity for you to answer numerous additional questions regarding the egregious waste.
Would you be available Tues. Mar. 21 or Thurs., Mar. 23 at 1pm? If not, kindly suggest another more convenient date and time.
My readers are indeed concerned with the schools and the outrageous continuing increase in the tax burden. A personal meeting and tour would provide a snowballing readership with some badly needed answers to numerous long-standing unanswered questions.
Tim Chorney, Publisher
The Llano Ledger
*****LISD Saga Goes On And On And On....*****
Just read how LISD plans to bribe its older workers in order to encourage them to leave employment and find it a bit perplexing. Here's the problem:
First, LISD is offering 38 teachers 75% of their annual salary to "retire". Assuming the average annual salary is $30,000, that amounts to $171,000 a year for a total of $855,000 over the five-year program period. Where's the money coming from? The reason proffered for getting rid of the 38 teachers who "qualify" is two-fold: to better maintain the experience level of teachers and, to save money. How does one maintain the experience level of teachers by getting rid of the most experienced ones and employing younger and less experienced teachers in their place?
LISD's "give away program" is stated as an attempt to "limit a mass exodus of a number of veteran teachers who are nearing retirement age", but wouldn't offering them a significant bonus to quit bring about the very thing LISD is trying to avoid, i.e. a mass exodus of experienced teachers?
According to LISD, "military experience counts as part of the 25 years "service to qualify for the program." If this were true, then they would not necessarily be getting rid of "veteran teachers" but possibly veterans with little teaching experience. Since it is my understanding Texas prohibits granting military preference as a consideration in school employment, how may military service legitimately be considered to grant other employment benefits? I'm all in favor of benefits to veterans but my concern is, is it lawful in this instance and, does it achieve LISD's stated purpose "to maintain the experience level of teachers" and "to save money"?
With a shortage of teachers throughout the state, and Llano is no exception, will those more experienced teachers be reemployed by LISD as substitute teachers? If so, why get rid of them in the first place and where's the cost savings in that?
LISD states the program "can save the district hundreds of thousands of dollars a year." Well, maybe yes--maybe no. Perhaps it's significant that LISD claims the program "can save" as opposed to "will save". I've been informed a few teachers will leave employment under the program, but most will not. If this is true, how can the program save the district hundreds of thousands of dollars a year as claimed?
And what does LISD intend to do after the 5 years are up, -- start the program all over again and encourage more experienced teachers to leave employment? Most teachers get their credential around age 23. Add 25 years teaching experience and you have a person 48 years old (young, in my book) being offered an incentive to quit employment.
This is a non-negotiated benefit offered to a select few, which LISD is not obligated to offer, so why assume an unnecessary cost? Paying people not to work is hardly the way to reduce costs and increase efficiency. It sounds more like playing Santa Claus with taxpayers' money.
To add insult to injury, I recently read where LISD is now waiving the $1,500 fee it had previously charged transferring students from outside the district. The reason given was the district has to pay to the federal and state government the aggregate amount of $3,800 for each student it accepts. A reflection of the government-run "public education" system no doubt. But rather than burden Llano taxpayers further, why not charge enough to cover these costs or not accept transfer students in the first place?
Harvey H. Klee, Esq.
Bluffton March 8, 2000
Publisher's Note: Wonder if Superintendent Jack Patton has a response? What about it, Jack? Care to comment? I'm deeply grateful to Mr. Klee for eloquently addressing several interesting issues in this letter as well as in two others posted yesterday on Reader Letters Vol 2. He has saved me a significant amount of time and effort, and I'm indeed appreciative. T.C.