I have made the very difficult decision regarding my service to our community on the USD 259 School Board. I expect my service at the Kansas Senate to be exciting, enjoyable and consuming. Our state is designed to be governed by a citizen legislature, where legislators have strong ties to their District through business, non profit organizations and other ventures. It is in this way that the legislator learns how law impacts their constituents.
I cannot, in good conscience, leave the USD 259 School Board at this time. I plan to complete my term through January 2018.
Our state is essentially well past broke. We are borrowing from ourselves, putting bandaids on open wounds. The Supreme Court’s ruling on the adequacy portion of the Gannon Case and the to-be-developed school funding formula will not immediately fix our problems. We must identify our priorities and implement comprehensive tax reform. While better days are surely ahead, this will be a difficult budgeting season for USD 259. With no additional money and yearly rising costs, we expect to be facing additional budget cuts.
Asking the Board to take the time to conduct interviews to replace me, coupled with the enormity of getting up to speed this quickly to make informed decisions is simply not realistic. The KS Legislature’s choice to move elections from the Spring to the Fall, extended my term by six months and has complicated the job of Board Members. The current needs of the District are only one of those difficulties. Other legislators hold local positions as well. This is not an unusual choice.
Many qualified candidates have expressed interest in my seat, I am hopeful that these individuals will follow the work of the Board closely and will choose to file for the Fall election. As always, I stand ready to mentor any and all who have an interest in serving their community in this way.