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I thought all in Island County would be very interested in this story in the Seattle Times today by Seattle Times staff reporter Zarah Fatah about three young Women from Freeland
They are on their way to compete in the Black Sea International ROV Competition and Exhibition in Romania — the largest underwater robotics competition in Europe. Teams will compete to see whose robot can rescue an underwater mannequin diver and defuse an underwater mine. The top three will be taken out to a real shipwreck, where their robots must retrieve hidden treasure.
The three young girls are Haley McConnaughey, 14, older sister Hannah, 17,and Annika Hustard age 13. who competed in her first robotics competition in May. The more I read about these young girls the more I realized how amazing they are in their life styles, i.e.
Since the OBAMACARE was foisted on the citizens of our once great nation, several large employers, ranging from restaurants and fast food establishments to colleges that rely on part time instructors with lots of part-time employees have announced plans to limit their employees to 25 hours per week in response to Obamacare. While they’ve taken a lot of criticism for doing this, it’s worth looking at why Obamacare incentivizes employers to do exactly what they’ve done. In short, they are not taking advantage of a “loophole” — they are simply responding to the law’s requirements and its definition of a “full-time” employee.
The “Affordable Care Act” requires “large” employers – those with 50 or more full-time-equivalent employees – to either provide “qualified” health coverage for all of their full-time employees, or pay an annual penalty of $2,000 per full-time employee (after the first 30) if they don’t provide such coverage. If they do provide coverage but it’s not “affordable,” the penalty is $3,000 per employee who finds it “unaffordable” (with a cap at the penalty they’d pay for not offering coverage at all). Read the rest of this entry »
Press release, 5/31/13:
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Effective prioritization of transportation funding, protecting the tax-exempt status of municipal bonds and opposing unfunded federal mandates were among the legislative priorities that Commissioner Kelly Emerson advanced before members of Congress and administration officials during the National Association of Counties’ (NACo) Rural Action Caucus (RAC) “fly-in” advocacy effort, April 23-25, in Washington, D.C.
“It’s critical that our federal representatives hear directly from county representatives expressing rural America’s interests,” said Emerson. “With Congress needing to make deep spending cuts, considering higher taxes and fees and imposing new federal regulations, they need to understand how these decisions will affect our county and the communities we serve.”
Many say our education system is broken.
The teachers’ unions says they need more money to fix it, BUT AN INCREASING NUMBER OF CITIZENS DISAGREE WITH THOSE CLAIMS.
A tech-savvy and caring parent could create a curriculum based upon state and fed standards and prep a child better than most public schools. Many are doing exactly this with “home schooling“:
One of the original goals in the late 1800s of expanding public schools was to create an environment for the influx of immigrants to become “Americanized” and for the system to act as a center for social interaction.
Sometimes, pulling out one’s crystal ball and making a prediction just seems too tempting a proposition. Therefore, I predict that on May 28, the Oak Harbor School Board will crown Lance Gibbon as Superintendent for the OHSD, and they will give him a three-year, regular (i.e. “permanent”) contract when they do so.
In doing so, the OHSD will step squarely into former Oak Harbor City Councilman Bob Morrison’s prediction about Gibbon’s eventual ascent, which he made to me shortly after Lance Gibbon first accepted the job as Assistant Superintendent for the OHSD: Bob’s take: “Rick Schulte was a Roger Woehl-trained man, and Lance Gibbon will be a Rick Schulte-trained man”. Read the rest of this entry »
Some of those who voted “no” have long-believed that the OHSD’s problems cannot be solved with more money. To demonstrate that point, we’ve received a series of letters containing first hand experiences within the Oak Harbor School District, along with permission to publish these letters here at Island Politics.
I suspect his own bio did him in.
In arguing for a “clear-headed” path to “change the dominant narrative arrayed against us“, he vomited:
“It is time—way past time—finally, inexorably, and unalterably to say “no”—not “no, but” or “no, and” but simply “no.””
The Washington voting rights act of 2013 would potentially provide the Oak Harbor Navy community a full-fledged full-time voice on the Oak Harbor School Board, but the OHSD’s Superintendent and incumbent school board directors have decided to oppose this legislation. The real reason they have done so? They do not want Oak Harbor on such a vector because they do not want to lose the ability to hand pick at-large public education sycophants who will simply go-along-to-get-along whenever asked to increase local property taxes in whatever amount the school district desires. Read the rest of this entry »
UPDATE (below, within article): Have you recently heard these local cries from the Oak Harbor School District (OHSD): “We have no money for textbooks!?!” and “Our paper supply is being rationed!?!” How can this be? This certainly is NOT due to lack of funding. What it has to do with is money mismanagement and the diversion of funds AWAY from the children and into the adult pockets that oversee children. This year, the money managers of the OHSD will burn through $57 MILLION dollars for 5,400 students.
A single quarter-page ad against the Oak Harbor Maintenance & Operations (M&O) levy appeared (buried) on page 12 of the Whidbey News-Times’ 26 January edition. Having just left the Oak Harbor School Board as an elected School Board Director, David McCool wasted no time penning a letter-to-the-editor attacking his former constituent - a reading teacher – and the WNT wasted no time in printing his letter-of-attack. The ad had been bought and paid-for at the Whidbey News-Times by a single individual, a private citizen, using a personal credit card. McCool called the ad “shameful” because, he says, whoever paid for the ad did not “have the courage to take personal ownership”. McCool also purports it to be “political fantasy” that the school levy is in any way connected to teacher TRI-Days. McCool is an outright LIAR. Read the rest of this entry »
(Updated: see below within article) After first labeling me a Fascist, tin-foil-hat-wearing kid-hating bully in the Whidbey News-Times Facebook forum, Oak Harbor High School Teacher Kevin Kindelberger next penned a letter to the editor which received the title “The school levy is not a scam”. His was the second letter published in the News-Times in an attempt to counter my letter titled “Proposed levy is a scam, vote against“.
Teacher Kindelberger’s apparent modus operandi is simply to claim “I assure everyone that not one of these accusations (by Bill Burnett) has any truth to it”, referring to articles written by me and which he has apparently read here at Island Politics. Read the rest of this entry »
Updated (below): Peter Szalai, the Oak Harbor Education Association President, penned a letter to the editor in which he denies that the teachers’ union he leads will receive additional Time, Responsibility and Incentive Days (TRI-Days) as part of the Oak Harbor School District’s proposed doubling of its Maintenance and Operations (M&O) Levy.
I had outlined my claims in a letter which the newspaper titled “Proposed levy is a scam, vote against“. Mr. Szalai’s letter, written in direct response to my letter, received the moniker “Calling levy ‘a scam’ is shameful“
In reality, Mr. Szalai’s letter solidly re-confirms that the teachers’ union is purporting a scam. Moreoever, it’s essentially the SAME kind of levy scam that Ed Beeksma, the gentleman whose name adorns Oak Harbor’s Beeksma Gateway Park, also wrote to the newspaper about over 20 years ago in Oak Harbor, when he was an elected local school board director.
Let’s examine the actual facts of this latest proposed local K-12 property tax levy and the TRI-Day scam. Read the rest of this entry »
Updated (below): A four page color flyer paid for by the Oak Harbor School District (OHSD) recently hit everyone’s mailbox on North Whidbey, boldly pretending NOT to be campaign literature for OHSD’s impending M&O levy.
Within that taxpayer-paid-for document, all five of our elected Oak Harbor School Board Directors signed their names claiming that the OHSD budget has had “no money for textbooks”, despite the fact that Washington State perennially provides revenue SPECIFICALLY for such items on a Full Time Equivalent (FTE) per-pupil basis.
Either all five of these people are either too stupid to be on a school board, or they think we, the public, are illiterate idiots, or all five of these elected officials are outright liars. In any case, the OHSD is being mismanaged and deserves ZERO public support, monetary or otherwise. Read the rest of this entry »
Updated: After first ringing my front door bell and then immediately volunteering to having just read an unambiguous “vote no” letter-to-the-editor that I had sent to Whidbey Marketplace and News, Greg Goebel - whose wife Mary L Goebel (aka Lynn Goebel, an OHSD teacher already receiving $9,406 in “bonus pay” and one of two people heading up the Maintenance and Operations levy campaign for the Oak Harbor School District) – felt he needed to to ask me personally if I would place a pro-levy sign in my front yard. Greg Goebel‘s actions and request of me are only as reasonable as if I had gone directly across the street to the home of the two OHSD teachers who live there and had asked them to remove their two pro-levy signs from their front yard.
Below is the letter that Greg Goebel claims to have first read and then decided would be his “in” with me after ringing my door bell on a Saturday morning: Read the rest of this entry »