neighborhood just isn't the same

Four York City School Board members spent about $2,000, mostly on food and cabs, at a seminar in California last month -- and that sum does not include air fare, hotels, conference fees and a fifth board member's expenses. Full Story
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bewildered

Seattle, WA

#1 May 17, 2009
So, Mr. Powell, the same MR. Powell that fails to attend 40 percent of city school board meetings, allegedely due to his "long cummute to Harrisburg" and his even "longer commute to Washington D.C." whom cannot find time to attend local school board meetings, found time out of his busy and hectic work and social schedule to attend a conference in San Diego?!? And why? To learn how to better educate our children in the City of York?!? And how does a side trip to the zoo accomplish this?

Not too mention, these members failed to communicate anything that they supposedly learned to the administrative staff of the distict!

All on the taxpayers dime!!

So,$2000 is the tally thus far, and we are still waiting on another member to submit her expenses!!! Now basically, one homeowner's taxes for the year covered what these clowns spent on this trip for school board members to fly to San Diego order $45 pizzas and go to the zoo!

What about the airfare??? Who paid for that???

And we constantly wonder why our city schools FAIL???

MR. POWELL, YOU WOULD LEARN FAR MORE ABOUT YORK CITY SCHOOLS IF YOU WOULD ATTEND A LOCAL SCHOOL BOARD MEETING THAN YOU COULD EVER LEARN IN SAN DIEGO!!

And that folks, is the simple truth of it all!
Illogical

Woodbury, NJ

#2 May 17, 2009
Being a person who has taken MANY business trips, these costs seem to be more the excessive. Does the district not have a limit for meals each day (as most businesses do)? Are there not guidelines for costs incurred during a business trip? Personal site-seeing while in the area on a trip are not typically covered by the business. I guess there are some questions left unanswered.

Since: Aug 08

Lebanon, PA

#3 May 17, 2009
$50 for breakfast seems high.
In The Know

Richmond, VA

#4 May 17, 2009
More pre-election propaganda and part of the continuing campaign against Hiawatha Powell.

The insiders want his scalp.

Dallastown's School Board was involved in a controversy over spending 11-thousand dollars on a school board association meeting in Florida a few years ago.

And Dell Computer sponsored a trip for Central York officials including school board members several years ago. Were there any reinbursements there?
Joe

Felton, PA

#5 May 17, 2009
I can understand air-fare, food (with limits) and hotel. But if your hotel is right across from the convention center, there is no need for cab fares (except to and from the airport) and all those side trips ought to be out of the individuals expense!
King of all Blacks

Monroe Township, NJ

#6 May 17, 2009
If you think these prices are high, I suggest you stay around York county and by all means stay away from; New York, Chicago, Miami Beach, LA, DC, and I pray you never go to London or the country of Japan.
For all the free volunteer time board members put into the district making policy for workers who earn big bucks, I have no problem with them enjoying a good vacation trip a couple times a year. Personally, I think board members should be paid like city council members.
Ms Grundy

Slingerlands, NY

#7 May 17, 2009
Obviously the school district is out of control. Why do they permit each individual to arrange their own flight and hotel reservations? Wouldn't arranging the flights ahead of time from the same airport provided the most cost effective airfare? And why not have them all stay in the same hotel. A business would have given them an allowance of so much per day for food. Taking taxi rides all over Southern California, ordering $50 room service breakfasts and pizzas sounds like personal expenses to me. It's not the money as much as the thumbing their noses at the taxpayers that is so bad.
used to live in the city

Wilmington, DE

#8 May 17, 2009
Except for 'In The Know' the above post are right on target. Adding to them are questions of why they didn't go together and carpool to an airport and try to get a better rate for the airfare? Past boards carpooled. As far as Powell's travel distance to the airport, it sounds as if he charged the district for his commute from York to D.C. and then to the airport. More personal business?

The transportation and food cost were outrageous. If the hotel was across the street from the convention center then why use have transportation cost other than to and from the airport? Ever hear of walking. Most of our students do it everyday to and from school in all kinds of weather. They were there to do a job not play around.

There was no reason for a $75 meal or room service. Most of the students in York City have families that eat on $75 or less for a whole week! Room service is being lazy. Of course the locals are going to send you to the expensive places. Ever hear of tourism and making money?? Ms. Atwater and Mr. Foust should be commended on their good dining choices.

I certainly hope that the information from the meeting was shared with the district administration. And likely it was shared at a board meeting. Oh and here I go "picking" on Mr. Powell again, those meetings they have a few times a month..the ones you don't have time to attend but you can use taxpayers' money to go to the zoo in San Diego and run all over California to eat $75 meals.

Personally I have always thought these trips to be a waste of money. What's wrong with getting together with local boards and discussing how to education the children and run the schools more efficiently? We all have similar problems in this area that are not the same nor can they be dealt with the same way as any district in California, Alaska or Utah. Work on what is wrong here. Educator, parents and students have given you plenty of places where that work needs to begin.
Philyd

Harrisburg, PA

#9 May 17, 2009
Powell should be fired on the spot.

I spent two weeks in Los Angeles on a company charge account and racked up about 1/2 the amount he did...

Fiscal responsibility should be a requirement for ANY "governmental" position. He clearly lacks that.
Common Sense Needed

Somerset, KY

#10 May 17, 2009
Why did they not all fly out on the same flight?
Why did they not rent a van for the five day commute?
Why pay Hiawatha Powell for mileage to Washington DC when he resides there?
I tip my hat to Tom Foust who did not rip the district for food, the rest of these should learn from his example.
It's no wonder that you all are the talk and joke of the city. Wake up and face reality.
lofty goals

Mountain View, CA

#11 May 17, 2009
Philyd wrote:
Powell should be fired on the spot.
I spent two weeks in Los Angeles on a company charge account and racked up about 1/2 the amount he did...
Fiscal responsibility should be a requirement for ANY "governmental" position. He clearly lacks that.
How can you be fired from an elected position. Can he be removed from office by impeachment?
Interested

United States

#12 May 17, 2009
In the age where the kids lack supplies that they need to be educated how can you Mr.Powell respectfully submit these outrageous receipts? How can you submit mileage to DC where your family resides? Your mileage should of been your home in DC to the airport? Where is your morals? Do everyone a favor, take one for the team & let another person that actually cares about the kids to take your spot on the board. I am not sure how you go to sleep each night with a clear conscience? City families are struggling & you have a $50 breakfast, thats alot for 1 person, or did your wife come with you?
ustaxpayer

United States

#13 May 17, 2009
Another in your face, just because we can!, shut-up and pay your taxes, example.
gluttons for punishment

Monroe Township, NJ

#14 May 17, 2009
Powell is an absolute disgrace. There is something very unsavory about his tenure on this board. The "King" is wrong on this one. If Powell was actually meeting up to his responsibilities as a board member then maybe I could live with some of this expense, but he has proven himself to be woefully incompitent when it comes to directing this district towards meeting the educational needs of our students. He should resign or thrown off immediately.
In The Know

Stafford, VA

#15 May 17, 2009
used to live in the city wrote:
Except for 'In The Know' the above post are right on target. Adding to them are questions of why they didn't go together and carpool to an airport and try to get a better rate for the airfare? Past boards carpooled. As far as Powell's travel distance to the airport, it sounds as if he charged the district for his commute from York to D.C. and then to the airport. More personal business?
The transportation and food cost were outrageous. If the hotel was across the street from the convention center then why use have transportation cost other than to and from the airport? Ever hear of walking. Most of our students do it everyday to and from school in all kinds of weather. They were there to do a job not play around.
There was no reason for a $75 meal or room service. Most of the students in York City have families that eat on $75 or less for a whole week! Room service is being lazy. Of course the locals are going to send you to the expensive places. Ever hear of tourism and making money?? Ms. Atwater and Mr. Foust should be commended on their good dining choices.
I certainly hope that the information from the meeting was shared with the district administration. And likely it was shared at a board meeting. Oh and here I go "picking" on Mr. Powell again, those meetings they have a few times a month..the ones you don't have time to attend but you can use taxpayers' money to go to the zoo in San Diego and run all over California to eat $75 meals.
Personally I have always thought these trips to be a waste of money. What's wrong with getting together with local boards and discussing how to education the children and run the schools more efficiently? We all have similar problems in this area that are not the same nor can they be dealt with the same way as any district in California, Alaska or Utah. Work on what is wrong here. Educator, parents and students have given you plenty of places where that work needs to begin.
I'm not a Powell fan, but this information is only being released now because of the election coming up and the planned hearing on Powell's removal from the school board.

Its no coincidence.

The release of this information is deliberate and planned.
figures

Cranford, NJ

#16 May 17, 2009
weak tax base....go figure.
Get Over It

Columbus, OH

#17 May 17, 2009
The timing of this story does seem deliberate, but that is irrelevant. I am also confused as to how a man who cannot attend board meetings due to pressing family concerns was able to attend a conference in San Diego. I believe each member of the board should be able to justify their trip expenses to the public at the next board meeting.

School board members do volunteer their time and services, but they should do so because they want to make the district better for the students. Attending meetings, giving sound input and working with other board members like adults rather than children are all qualities each board member should possess. If Mr. Powell - or any other board member - feels this is too much to ask, then he should resign and allow someone who cares to take his seat.
used to live in the city

Wilmington, DE

#18 May 17, 2009
In The Know wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm not a Powell fan, but this information is only being released now because of the election coming up and the planned hearing on Powell's removal from the school board.
Its no coincidence.
The release of this information is deliberate and planned.
Looks like they should get rid of more than Powell. For school board directors they don't seem too bright when it comes to math/budgets and common sense.
city sos

Cranford, NJ

#19 May 17, 2009
Powell is a pig!!! He lives in DC but charged 212 miles to the airport, did he get lost in his hood??? He can't show up to board meetings but can fly across the country for a meeting??? This clown needs to go at the meeting this week.
mother of two

Philadelphia, PA

#20 May 17, 2009
Our tax $ well spent once again! This school district sucks!

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