Tuesday, January 24, 2012

APS Board votes to retain current members

"Westsiders" will not be pleased with the APS School Board's redistricting plan, and with good reason.

The fundamental precept in drawing district lines, is to divide up constituents equally.

Beyond that, an effort should be made to keep common interests together in a school board district. You wouldn't want a school board district line to intersect an individual school boundary, for example.

The Rio Grande River is an ipso facto line. The separation of interests cannot be moved any more than the river can be moved. Move on.

The last thing we need to think about when drawing district lines is, whether it will be convenient for the incumbent.

Another ipso facto; self-interest is conflict of interest.

According to the Journal, link;

"The approved plan ensures all sitting board members will continue to live in their current districts – which some board members said was deliberate. Board president Paula Maes said it was good for APS to keep the current board intact".

and, though promoting harmony is not on the list of things one normally considers in drawing district lines, Maes argued;

“One of the things we have going on right now is a very harmonious board, and that is very important for this district, is that its board members get along.”
Though Maes own seat was threatened by more ethically drawn district lines and she voted in favor of keeping her own seat, offered instead of having recused herself;
“... it’s not to make a district where everybody is still in their seat, but ..."
Maes further argued that any board member who wanted to continue to represent a particular bunch of constituents, ought to be able to;
"... if all the people on this board want to run again, they ought to have the opportunity to continue the work we’re doing. And some of these maps caused huge shifts in that.”
In the better plan, Maes would have had to run against another board member if they both wanted to keep their seats.

Kathy Korte, who represents District 2, is reported to have arrived in support of a river boundary based on the will of her constituents, but later voted for the plan that protected Maes' interests. Whether that was coincidental or methodical, is up to Korte's constituents to decide.

Frankly, Korte isn't too thrilled with them either; she took another shot at her constituents for no-showing opportunities to participate in open meetings.
"Korte said ... her constituents ... should have come to meetings if they cared about the redistricting outcome".
Good for her.

Although hard to reconcile with her attitude about people who show up insisting upon an opportunity to ask inconvenient but absolutely legitimate questions; in which case she's good with having them arrested.

Korte spoke the truth when she offered;
“This is a board that will be swayed when presented with a lot of public opinion and comment."
Torches and pitchforks.

Board member David Robbins went on record in favor of denying the existence of the Rio Grande River and in favor of lines that cannot be used in the future, by Westsiders wanting to split away from the APS entirely.

photos Mark Bralley


Anonymous said...

I read all of Paula's positioning but thought she had said she was not running again. This makes it clear she is.

ched macquigg said...

That was my impression as well. It came in the context of her throwing herself in front of the bus on some other issue - I can't remember what.

She was/is? a named respondent in a complaint that she had abused her office. I'd like to know what happened to the lawsuit.