It’s time to explain the entire shortage of funds scandal, if there ever was a shortage of funds.

The public will no longer accept a simple press release or another weak article in the Gainesville Times.

First, we need a clear time line of events. Who knew what when. The current set of dates contradict themselves. One report says the accounting errors were in 2004 – 2005. Another statement says 2007-2008.

We need and we want a first date. When was the shortage first suspected. An exact date. Documents showing who discovered the anomaly. Who did they contact.

What was the first projection, when it was found, in dollars? How much money was alleged to be ‘missing’ at the first projection of a ‘loss.’

How many times did this loss projection figure get changed? Who changed it. When was it changed. An exact dollar amount each time the estimate changed.

We need to know what adjustments to the budget were made, when those were made, and how much were those adjustments.

How much did our state legislatures give away in tax cuts? When did those exemptions take place.

How much money was taken back from the city school budget by state mandated cuts in school funds.

How much did expenses increase, since so many people say it was a problem of ‘over spending.’

How much did the economy change the budget? Things like $4 per gallon price for gas and fuel. The surcharges from Georgia Power and the rapid increase in fuel cost were unforseen by everyone. Unless Carl Rogers wants to take credit for seeing into the future, again.

It is not too much to ask that those questions get answered in a final report to the citizens, teachers, administrators, and students.

Wait too long, and someone will file an Open Records Act (ORA) request. It’s cheaper to fess up without the legal pressures of ORA deadlines.

Advertisements