Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Council candidate Leonard Katzman responds to a letter submitted by PCC member Paul Ross.
Dear fellow Portsmouth residents: This is in response to the letter from PCC member Paul Ross on Oct. 28. Mr. Ross was responding to the article in which I had sharply criticized the PCC for intentionally spreading misleading information. In the original article, I provided an example to show exactly how what the PCC presented as a "fact" was clearly incomplete and deceptive. I pointed out the whole truth. Mr. Ross has responded to this fact check with nothing more than a personal attack, calling me a "disparaging individual." Not once does he refute my statements about the PCC's use of misleading data. Not once does he defend the PCC's "students per teacher" statement that I laid bare as deceptive. I stand by what I wrote -- that the PCC …
Thursday, October 14, 2010
The Portsmouth Concerned Citizens (PCC) held a political forum Wednesday night at Portsmouth Middle School.
The Portsmouth Concerned Citizens (PCC) held a political forum Wednesday evening at Portsmouth Middle School. Both Town Council and School Committee candidates answered questions from both the PCC and public. Jeff Richard served as moderator. Each candidate was given a two-minute response time. Below are excerpts from the final part of the three-part forum. Following are answers from school committee candidates. The current school committee voted to forgo a Caruolo 'suit. Would you consider a Caruolo 'suit in the future and why? John McDaid: "Caruolo is a difficult action to take by any town. School committee members are agents of the state. They are required to have a balanced budget. The Caruolo is a state law that allows school …
Thursday, October 7, 2010
The school department will present a 'deficit reduction plan' at the next School Committee meeting on Oct. 12. Meanwhile, both the PCC and SOS react to Tuesday's special election results.
Portsmouth's voters have spoken, soundly defeating a referendum Tuesday that would have restored $765,301 that the Town Council cut from the Fiscal Year 2010-11 school budget. In light of the outcome, school officials are now planning to present a deficit reduction plan to the School Committee next Tuesday. Superintendent Susan Lusi and School Finance Director Mark Dunham did not return calls for comment on Wednesday, but Lusi e-mailed a brief statement to Patch. "The Portsmouth community has spoken," she said. "The administration will be bringing a deficit reduction plan forward for the School Committee's consideration at its meeting of October 12." Although it is not clear what cuts that plan would be recommending, school officials …
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
An effort to give the schools $765,301 is rejected by 57% of Portsmouth voters.
Voters chose to not restore $765,301 to the school department's budget in Tuesday's special election. Fifty-seven percent of Tuesday's voters rejected the effort to give the schools more money. The final tally of votes was 2,198 for Option 1 (to leave the budget alone) and 1,690 for Option 2 (to increase the budget). Option 1 read, "1. The Portsmouth Town Council appropriation for the School Department Budget shall remain unchanged in the amount of $35,527,720.00." Option 2 read as follows, "The Portsmouth Town Council appropriation for the School Department Budget shall be increased by $765,301.00 to a total appropriation of $36,293,021.00." A copy of the special election ballot is attached at right. Voters turned out in large numbers to …
Voter turnout for the special election expected to be 50 percent higher than September's statewide primary.
Despite the chilly autumn air and brief rain showers, voters turned out in large numbers for Tuesday's special referendum election. Lines of voters quickly formed to enter the polling site at Town Hall. Parking spaces were sparse at the Aquidneck Island Christian Academy as police directed traffic in and out of the school's parking lot. As of 10 a.m., Registrar of Voters Madeleine Pencak reported 759 ballots being cast throughout town, an increase of nearly 50 percent over the turnout at the September statewide primary when only 392 ballots had been counted by 10 a.m. in town. Pencak said she expected 30 to 40 percent of voters to turn out for this special election. Both candidates for office, as well as members of the Save Our Schools …
A referendum will go before voters today, Oct. 5, at a special election. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
A referendum asking voters to restore $765,301 to the school department's budget will go before voters at a special election to be held this Tuesday, Oct. 5. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Residents are being asked to note the time of the polls. Unlike a statewide election, the polls will close early at 8 p.m. The polling locations are as follows: Precinct 2701—Prudence Island Fire Station Precincts 2702 and 2703—Portsmouth Multi Purpose Senior Center, 110 Bristol Ferry Road Precincts 2704 and 2705—Common Fence Point Community Hall, 933 Anthony Road Precincts 2706, 2707 and 2708—Portsmouth Town Hall, 2200 East Main Road. Precincts 2709, 2710 and 2712—Aquidneck Island Christian Academy, 321 East Main Road The special election is …
Monday, October 4, 2010
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Susan Lusi released the following information Monday, as well as a reminder to residents to vote in Tuesday's special referendum election.
Monday, October 4, 2010
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Susan Lusi released the following information in an e-mail on Tuesday. The following is published verbatim: Partial Information: The Rest of the Story: Partial Information: The Rest of the Story: Partial Information: The Rest of the Story: Partial Information: The Rest of the Story: Assertion: Reducing sports, music, and art to our children will only save $66,000; the remaining $700,000 is earmarked for salary increases. Facts: Assertion: The School Committee failed to disclose a $400,000 budget surplus from FY 2010 until all the referendum signatures were collected. Facts: Assertion: After the School Department filed a Caruolo action, the Medicaid Reimbursement account of around $230,000, "magically" …
Sunday, October 3, 2010
E. Richard Carpender talks about referendum information being discussed by others.
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Tuesday Portsmouth voters will vote on a final school budget. I believe it is essential that the funds be restored and I know there are others who disagree. I respect their right to that opinion. However, I urge voters to carefully review the information that is being cast about by some who would like to see the referendum fail. School Committee Member Cynthia Perrotti, School Committee candidate Jonathan Harris, PCC President Larry Fitzmorris, as well as Town Council candidate and PCC member Joe Robicheau, and John and Eloise Stalk have disseminated information that is inaccurate, misleading and blatantly false. School Committee member Perrotti says that we should just except what the Town Council gave us and make it work. She says that …
Friday, October 1, 2010
David Croston, School Committee candidate, voices his opinion on the referendum.
Friday, October 1, 2010
For all of you tired of reading about the referendum, I am more than tired of correcting the misinformation campaign against it. The Portsmouth voters are smart and I should leave well enough alone, but there is a lot at stake and I would hate to leave a loose end. If anyone would like to question my facts, please challenge me. To date, I see no comments on my previous opinion piece. I write today to correct the misinformation in Ms. Perrotti's Patch.com opinion piece. Just last night, I had a discussion (more like words) with Ms. Perrotti of the real damage this misinformation has to people, jobs, reputation and our community. I believe this misinformation is purely politically driven, but you decide! Last evening, I had asked her to …
Both sides of the referendum debate buy ads, post signs to prepare for this Tuesday's special election.
A referendum asking voters to restore $765,301 to the school department's budget will go before voters at a special election to be held this Tuesday, Oct. 5. If approved, the referendum would authorize a total school budget of about $36.3 million. The referendum would also increase taxes about 20 cents per thousand dollars of assessed value, or an additional tax hike of $71.44 annually for a $350,000 home. As school officials prepare for the outcome, both the Save Our Schools organization and the Portsmouth Concerned Citizens are taking steps to remind people to get out and vote. SOS, led by Dave Croston, has taken out ads in local newspapers and will hold small "visibility campaigns" this weekend before Tuesday's election. "We have a …