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541 - 560 of 578 Comments Last updated Dec 19, 2012
no merger 2

Little Falls, NY

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#570
Oct 13, 2012
 
Make your vote count wrote:
Make sure you vote, It is your right !!!
The question people do not ask is how will we get the biggest bang for our buck now or then?
Keep one thing in mind while ready the following. Government funded programs are just that. If ran a business like the government you would not be in business.(ie, General Motors) They could not sell there products to fund the promises from many many years before the same as government funded programs
(ie ,school systems etc.)
Everyone has the right to VOTE either a emotional or personal choice it is yours, make sure you vote!!!
Lets talk capacity levels. The true CURRENT numbers show that if the Merger happens.
Fisher elementary school will at 51% capacity
Barringer Road elementary will be at 102%
Herkimer elementary will be at 59%
Jarvis school will be at 91%
Herkimer High school will be at 60%
Ilion High school will be at 82%
All schools and staff should be utilized at maximum 100% capacity.
If the annual budget is 64,000,000 divide it by 6 schools that is 10.7 million per school.
If you average all schools at this point you will only be getting 72% bang for your buck.
A true merger is to save money and look out for the tax payer and the students. This combined district will spend $18,265 dollars per student, after laying off 14 teachers and closing Remington school in Ilion.
School boards over the many many years have caused the issue at hand. It is your choice you have the right to VOTE do it and make it count. Get involved.
Excellent comments. Merger or No merger we need to be fiscally responsible. That includes legislators in Albany, local school districts and tax payers. My no merger vote is based on the fact that there are too many unanswered questions. Perhaps smeone can help me to better understand. When I asked these questions at the village meetings no one could answer them for me.

1. Where is Albany going to get the proposed incentive money? 2. How can a state with an aging and shrinking population generate enough revenue to maintain the status quo? In otherwords when will the state realize we need to change the way we do things.
3. Are there Key Performance Indicators tied to the money? Is the newly formed school district required to reduce costs in order to receive additional financial aid?
4. Other than reducing teaching staff what other cost reductions are there in the merger plan?
5. How can a state that is required to annually vote on the budget able to guarantee money 14 years down the road?
6. Were other schools that recently had merger votes promised money by the state? If not, why?
7. How does the state allocate the lottery money that is intended to go to schools? Is there a better way to allocate those funds?
RestAssured

Little Falls, NY

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#571
Oct 13, 2012
 
The only people who will have less money in their pockets if this goes through will be the taxpayers. The Administrators, Educators and the Unions will benefit most. All of this will be at the expense of our kids.I'm not sure how you make tenured teachers better.Especially when they will receive higher pay for doing the same below standard job our kids are receiving now. It's like hiring the same crappy contractor who messed your house up the first time back for a second chance.I could care less about Cosmo or his wife or who ever else is at the troth. Only the pigs get slaughtered. Sorry folks,I'm not buying it. I'm a "NO" October 18th
FocusedonFacts

New York, NY

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#572
Oct 13, 2012
 
clb wrote:
A few people lost their jobs last year. A hell of a lot more are going to lose their jobs if the merger goes through. If you are worried about saving jobs you are looking at it totally wrong. Jobs will not be saved no matter what happens. If you want a merger to save your family member's job you are dead wrong. Herkie has it right. If you look at some of these salaries, benefits, expenses, purchases, etc. you can see why the schools have no more money. A merger would only make it worse over time because the extra state aid will dry out within 10 years and then what! Oh you won't have kids in there in 10 years so you don't care what happens then. They are already planning so many new programs to try to bribe the kids and parents into voting for the merger. A bigger school system means bigger expenses whether you want to face the truth or not. The merger is like getting more credit cards with larger credit limits in order to continue your current lifestyle. Someday it will all catch up. What will solve the problem is a good housecleaning. Vote no for the merger and force the Herkimer school district to watch expenses and not overpay for work that should cost 1/3 of what they are being charged.
The merger job cuts are less than what we normally lose each year - less than the number of jobs that are lost each year due to retirements, moves, etc. It was planned that way in the proposal. More jobs will be lost without the merger. The merger is like getting a raise for 14 years, allowing you to pay down debt, and save some too. There is no 'credit'. If you want a bare bones school with no choices, bigger classes, no clubs, no sports, no kindergarten, no musicals (none of those are mandated)and high taxes, go ahead and vote no.
FocusedonFacts

New York, NY

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#573
Oct 13, 2012
 
RestAssured wrote:
The only people who will have less money in their pockets if this goes through will be the taxpayers. The Administrators, Educators and the Unions will benefit most. All of this will be at the expense of our kids.I'm not sure how you make tenured teachers better.Especially when they will receive higher pay for doing the same below standard job our kids are receiving now. It's like hiring the same crappy contractor who messed your house up the first time back for a second chance.I could care less about Cosmo or his wife or who ever else is at the troth. Only the pigs get slaughtered. Sorry folks,I'm not buying it. I'm a "NO" October 18th
Teacher's salaries in this area are at the bottom of the pay scale for the state. Herkimer's Supt. salary is too. Herkimer has an interim now - but they need to hire if this merger falls. See what kind of candidates you get to fill that spot, with the lowball salary that is in that budget. Sometimes, with luck, there is a passionate person who loves the Valley and doesn't care that they could make way more one county over, but more often, you get what you pay for.
RestAssured

Little Falls, NY

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#574
Oct 14, 2012
 
FocusedonFacts wrote:
<quoted text>
Teacher's salaries in this area are at the bottom of the pay scale for the state. Herkimer's Supt. salary is too. Herkimer has an interim now - but they need to hire if this merger falls. See what kind of candidates you get to fill that spot, with the lowball salary that is in that budget. Sometimes, with luck, there is a passionate person who loves the Valley and doesn't care that they could make way more one county over, but more often, you get what you pay for.
We are seeing the candidates we have. Tell me how they will better themselves by throwing more money at them? Your thread belies the true intentions of the Pro-Merge and you have made my point for me. It's more about higher wages than the kids. Thank - You
Kids deserve better

Little Falls, NY

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#575
Oct 14, 2012
 

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RestAssured wrote:
<quoted text> We are seeing the candidates we have. Tell me how they will better themselves by throwing more money at them? Your thread belies the true intentions of the Pro-Merge and you have made my point for me. It's more about higher wages than the kids. Thank - You
Would you be willing to have a 1st year heart surgeon operate on you because he/she was cheaper. Or would you be willing to look around for the one with 10yrs under their belt. I believe Mr. Tangorra is a short way away from his Phd. That ,to me, is bettering themselves. To be a better educator. Dedicated to our schools and our children. He didn't have to go for more education. He already has a job.
RestAssured

Little Falls, NY

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#576
Oct 14, 2012
 

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Yes.... Mr. Tangorra and his lovely wife continue to better THEMSELVES at our expense. What does he teach? Will his PHD make the "educators" teach better.You seem to want to make this about Mr Tangorra. I stated Earlier I'm not interested in his self serving motives.Just seems to me if we are going to level the playing field with a Merge of three districts. It might be wise to hire some new blood from outside our area who can spotlight our problems objectively.Without the mommies and families getting in the way.This is a fundamental problem around here, we keep changing companies and continue to keep the same CEO's with their golden parachutes on board.
Here's an Idea. Let's call this new contract the "Stick and Carrot Method". How about all district employees take a pay freeze for three years. If graduation rates and test score rise 20% then we reward administrators and educators with the same percentage reflected in their paychecks.With Truly verifiable methods of course.If they fail us again they take the same percentage of failure in the form of a cut.Seems reasonable. Make these folks prove themselves to the taxpayers.Imagine that, Employees being held accountable for work performance. I don't think there is a voter out there who wouldn't want to reward great performance. We all know the Union or Educators will never do that.So I'm still a 'NO"
be cautious

Little Falls, NY

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#577
Oct 14, 2012
 

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Rest Assured you make some excellent points. I don't know Mr. Tangorra but if he is the most qualified candidate then he should be considered for the position. It is not uncommon for people to continue their eductaion to advance their careers. And yes, continuing education can make you a more qualified candidtate and better employee that is why employers encourage it. If he is not the most qualified we should cut our losses and pay his contract. If he is found to have violated his contract, as some have suggested, then we should not pay his contract and let him take legal action. Public employees need to be held to the same standards as private sector employees. Across this country private sector people have seen their wages and benefits drastically cut. There needs to be Performance Indicators in place to determine if the teachers are doing their job or need more education to keep up with the changing world.

In regards to Kids Deserve Better analogy of a heart surgeon, I want the most qualified and years of service does not always equate to most qualified. In addition, he did have to continue his education in order to qualify for a position in a larger school district. If the merger goes through he may not have a job.



Kids deserve better

Little Falls, NY

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#578
Oct 14, 2012
 
RestAssured wrote:
Yes.... Mr. Tangorra and his lovely wife continue to better THEMSELVES at our expense. What does he teach? Will his PHD make the "educators" teach better.You seem to want to make this about Mr Tangorra. I stated Earlier I'm not interested in his self serving motives.Just seems to me if we are going to level the playing field with a Merge of three districts. It might be wise to hire some new blood from outside our area who can spotlight our problems objectively.Without the mommies and families getting in the way.This is a fundamental problem around here, we keep changing companies and continue to keep the same CEO's with their golden parachutes on board.
Here's an Idea. Let's call this new contract the "Stick and Carrot Method". How about all district employees take a pay freeze for three years. If graduation rates and test score rise 20% then we reward administrators and educators with the same percentage reflected in their paychecks.With Truly verifiable methods of course.If they fail us again they take the same percentage of failure in the form of a cut.Seems reasonable. Make these folks prove themselves to the taxpayers.Imagine that, Employees being held accountable for work performance. I don't think there is a voter out there who wouldn't want to reward great performance. We all know the Union or Educators will never do that.So I'm still a 'NO"
I agree with many points. One problem. We can't change existing contracts. But with a new school system you now can put these very points into all new contracts. At all levels. Starting fresh can make a world of difference in both personnel and attitude. I know change is hard but we can't condemn something if we haven't at least tried.
be cautious

Little Falls, NY

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#579
Oct 14, 2012
 

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Kids deserve better wrote:
<quoted text>
I agree with many points. One problem. We can't change existing contracts. But with a new school system you now can put these very points into all new contracts. At all levels. Starting fresh can make a world of difference in both personnel and attitude. I know change is hard but we can't condemn something if we haven't at least tried.
agreed, if the merger passes we need to make sure that whether you were for or against we all stand united, accept the outcome and make sure things are done right. if it does not go through we should continue to work together as communties to improve our futures. this is more than just about our schoools it is about our community and childrens future. I am the poster child for what this area once had to offer. I graduated high school locally, graduated from HCCC and SUNY Utica. I am fortunate enough to hold a high paying job in the valley. I have traveled all over the US and to numerous foriegn countries. Not many opportunities like that left. Instead of tearing each other down we should be doing our best to improve what we have and stop crying about what we don't. Thank you for constructive responses not every dialog has to be vicious and insulting. The reality is the valley is not what it once was but it is still my favorite place. Both because of the people and the beauty of our region. I don't think most people realize what a beautiful area we live in, just look around sometime.
FocusedonFacts

New York, NY

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#580
Oct 14, 2012
 
RestAssured wrote:
<quoted text> We are seeing the candidates we have. Tell me how they will better themselves by throwing more money at them? Your thread belies the true intentions of the Pro-Merge and you have made my point for me. It's more about higher wages than the kids. Thank - You
You are not seeing the choices that you will have if Herkimer has to hire. That position is not filled - it is an interim. If this merger does not go through, Herkimer will have to hire a permanent Supt. Good luck getting good candidates with the dollars allocated for that in the Herkimer budget. This merger does save money on administrators - if you only need one supt. There is over $200,000 saved right off the bat. Do the math. My point on teachers's salaries is that we pay less than almost every other area in the state so DON'T blame this mess on the teachers. Duh. Unless you want to run a school with volunteers. Or don't give a crap about the quality of education in this area.
no merger 2

Little Falls, NY

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#581
Oct 14, 2012
 
FocusedonFacts wrote:
<quoted text>
You are not seeing the choices that you will have if Herkimer has to hire. That position is not filled - it is an interim. If this merger does not go through, Herkimer will have to hire a permanent Supt. Good luck getting good candidates with the dollars allocated for that in the Herkimer budget. This merger does save money on administrators - if you only need one supt. There is over $200,000 saved right off the bat. Do the math. My point on teachers's salaries is that we pay less than almost every other area in the state so DON'T blame this mess on the teachers. Duh. Unless you want to run a school with volunteers. Or don't give a crap about the quality of education in this area.
Obviously you didn't read the merger study because it shows a $600,000 increase in administrative costs and a $1,600,000 reduction in teacher salaries through cuts for a net savings of $1,000,000. Hope those high paid administrators are qualified to teach those extra courses you have been promised because there won't be any teachers to teach them. And certainly the teachers have to assume some of the responsibility.

FocusedonFacts

New York, NY

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#582
Oct 14, 2012
 
no merger 2 wrote:
<quoted text>
Obviously you didn't read the merger study because it shows a $600,000 increase in administrative costs and a $1,600,000 reduction in teacher salaries through cuts for a net savings of $1,000,000. Hope those high paid administrators are qualified to teach those extra courses you have been promised because there won't be any teachers to teach them. And certainly the teachers have to assume some of the responsibility.
Your math needs a refresher. Right now, Herkimer offers some very small class sections that will not be able to be maintained with further budget cuts. Put those kids in the same class with kids from Ilion and Mohawk, and now you have a full class needing only one teacher instead of 3- this is efficient use of staff. And re: Admin - one of those is a temporary director of Transition ($90,000). And if you see page 34-35, you will see that the State has a new mandate that involves administrative time - one that all of the teacher bashers should like. It is the APPR, the new teacher evaluation system. Even with the merger we are at a higher teacher to administrator ratio than recommended by State Ed for that MANDATED process. Are you aware of all of the State mandates for reporting that is required of Administration or do you visualize the 'good old days' when the principal actually had time to walk the halls?
Green and White

Herkimer, NY

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#583
Oct 16, 2012
 

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It is obvious you people need to know the facts and there is hidden information in the study to make it look better than it is.

For example. Page 26
All schools show HIGH estimates for capacity levels.
Enrolemnet is declining why would you use HIGH estimates.

Page 26 still

All school capacity levels for each location are provided seperately except for Fisher and Barringer RD. These are combined. Why?
Answer: The Fisher school will hold 578 kids. and there will only be 297 kids that is only half full. That school costs 6-7 million dollars to be open weather there is 1 student or if it is full of students. Is that worth you tax money. The reason they kept this school open is so that the Mohawk people would vote yes. If they closed this school and kept reminton school open it is dead in Mohawk.

Also Barringer Rd school will hold 584 students and there enrollment is 594 students 102% capacity which is ok. If ilion residents knew this they would vote NO.

That is just one example. So in the study it shows 894 students and the capicity of the Fisher and Barringe rd schools together is 1162 and they show the capicity level at 76.9%

With that said, make your decision if you really think they are telling you the truth. If you want more I can give them to you.

Vote No and they can live with there lies.
surprise surprise

Somerville, MA

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#584
Oct 16, 2012
 

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Read the study on the Herkimer School site and you will see that everything they promised is baised on recommendations. This is why NO is the answer. Herkimer and Ilion can split Mohawk students in future. That's all that needs to be done and life will be good once again. Politics, Politics!!!!
Facebook

United States

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#589
Dec 16, 2012
 

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surprise surprise wrote:
Read the study on the Herkimer School site and you will see that everything they promised is baised on recommendations. This is why NO is the answer. Herkimer and Ilion can split Mohawk students in future. That's all that needs to be done and life will be good once again. Politics, Politics!!!!
And what are your thoughts now???
friends of the merger

Herkimer, NY

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#590
Dec 16, 2012
 

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vote no on raising the tax cap
just saying

Boston, MA

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#591
Dec 17, 2012
 
Crickets......
Facts are Helpful

Little Falls, NY

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#593
Dec 17, 2012
 
friends of the merger wrote:
vote no on raising the tax cap
The public does not vote on raising the tax cap. A majority of the BOE approves raising the tax cap.
friends of the merge

Liverpool, NY

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#594
Dec 17, 2012
 
yes we know that, i was telling the board to vote no otherwise it would never be overwritten dopey

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