LPOSD’s Shifting Levy Defense
After LPOSD’s permanent levy passed on November 5 by a super-slim margin, a shocking revelation a couple of days later showed that LPOSD had failed to put legally required language on the ballot that would have advised voters that the levy would cost them $214 per $100,000 of taxable property value if passed.
Voters had not yet received their property tax bills at election time (they were mailed November 12), so were unaware of exactly how high their permanent financial burden would be. This is why the Legislature had required the clarifying ballot language during the 2019 session and made it effective July 1.
LPOSD ignored that requirement. Its Chief Financial Officer, Lisa Hals, created the levy ballot language and submitted it to the school board on August 13. It was approved without objection or question about the omission of the legally required language by the superintendent and the board members.
When the truth came out, Superintendent Albertson stonewalled with a slippery, lawyerly statement that admitted no wrongdoing: “The board believes that the school district has complied with all applicable law.”
On December 23 a citizen filed a lawsuit (at his own expense) to stop the levy based on the faulty ballot. Immediately a new LPOSD lawyerly statement emerged, claiming the school district “acted in good faith” but there was a “technical error”. And, by the way, multiple taxpayer-funded lawyers are fighting on LPOSD’s behalf.
Once again, LPOSD is proving its lack of accountability, and of course at taxpayers’ expense.
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