The Madison School Board approved (6-1) additional spending using Fund 80 (property taxes not subject to state revenue caps, in other words, local taxes that can go up as fast as the District approves) to create new rec sports programs:
- Sandy Cullen:
Ruth Robarts, the only board member to vote against the spending increase, expressed concern that using Fund 80 to restore programs that have been cut from the portion of the district’s budget subject to revenue cap feeds “the perception that Fund 80 is a slush fund.”
Robarts asked that a public hearing be held before the board took action, but a motion to table the measure failed.
Board President Carol Carstensen said board members agreed to cut the number of freshmen and junior varsity teams with the understanding that MSCR would try to create a recreational sports program to provide opportunities for more students to participate in athletics.
- Cristina Daglas:
Three board members voiced concerns before the funding was approved. Member Ruth Robarts, the sole dissenter, tried to table the proposal until after a public hearing could be held. The table motion failed 5-2. Member Shwaw Vang said he was wary many of the district’s neediest students still would not be reached and member Lawrie Kobza said she was concerned about costs of the sports-related aspect already in MSCR’s budget.
But despite concerns, a majority of board members felt it necessary to push the program’s development ahead. Board President Carol Carstensen said the only reason she agreed to the elimination of no-cut freshman sports months ago was because of the possibility of this extramural program.