LETTER: Vote no against North Bergen BOE school funding & reorganization referendum

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In a letter to the editor, North Bergen resident Robert Waldon is urging voters to come out against the North Bergen school funding and reorganization referendum on December 11th. 

Photo via https://horacemann.northbergen.k12.nj.us.

Dear Editor,

A North Bergen BOE flyer and the BOE website both describe a Dec. 11 referendum to decide whether the BOE should buy and renovate the old Hi-Tech H.S. and with the added classrooms, reconfigure the North Bergen school system.

The BOE doe not say how much this will all cost.

It does say the plan “COULD” bring “NO INCREASE IN TAXES” then it contradicts itself, saying “34 Million in long term bonding with offsets to reduce annual costs to taxpayers.”

“Reduce annual costs to taxpayers” does not mean “NO INCREASE IN TAXES.”
How will this bond be paid off?

The flyer says the Township will contribute $1.25 million a year from PILOT funds – which PILOT funds and for how long?

Is the $1.25 million/year dependent on IF the proposed NB power plant gets built, and IF PILOTs are approved by the State?

Will taxpayers be on the hook if neither occurs?

BOE states “Additional state education aid through School Funding Reform Act” – how much, and has it been approved?

Will taxpayers be on the hook if it’s not approved?

BOE described its reconfiguration plan, but there’s a big problem – it makes no mention of the NB Preschool.

The reconfiguration was originally conceived as a means to enable the North Bergen Preschool’s 17 trailers to move out of Braddock Park, allowing preschoolers to go to school in elementary schools.

NJDEP and the National Park Service have told North Bergen the Preschool MUST leave Braddock Park by 08-31-2021 because the school’s park location violates State and Federal regulations.

If the Preschool is not part of the reconfiguration plan, will taxpayers be on the hook for this move?

Voters need more information – VOTE “NO” ON December 11.

Robert Walden
North Bergen resident

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