To The Editor:
The looming fiscal and educational insolvency facing the Potsdam Central District is one reason I am running for a seat on the Board of Education – but it is not the most important reason.
The quality of the PCSD will have a direct impact on the ability of SUNY Potsdam, Clarkson University and Canton-Potsdam Hospital to recruit and keep good professors and physicians. The colleges, the hospital, and the PCS are the economic backbone of Potsdam. When one has trouble, they will all be negatively impacted. Therefore, like no time in recent memory, Potsdam Central needs a Board that recognizes the significance of the problems facing the district and their impact on the local economy.
How will Potsdam Central address its fiscal and educational crisis? Should a merger be considered? Could PCSD become a magnet school? What are the university presidents and hospital CEO advising? Is the public being kept well-informed so they are supportive when change must be undertaken?
Potsdam Central is at a critical crossroads. Ideas aimed at protecting the educational/fiscal health of the district must be studied with diligence but with an eye toward the need to take action soon.
I recently attended a Town Meeting where many citizens expressed deep concerns about unaffordable tax increases likely to result from property revaluations. Some were in tears (fearing they could not afford to stay in their homes) while others stated their businesses could not absorb a significant tax hike.
Potsdam Central, as one taxing entity, needs to be sensitive to the fiscal pressures on community members and businesses. We dont want people forced out of their homes and we dont want businesses moving elsewhere. Such events only worsen the fiscal problems facing Potsdam Central.
Even though it is a particularly difficult time to serve on a board of education, I have decided to be a candidate for the PCS BOE. The public will be asked to vote Tuesday, May 21 on the school district budget and for Board of Education members. Please take the time to vote.
Ann Martin Carvill