This entry is part 1 of 3 in the series "Kramer vs. Kramer" to "Kramer vs. Ramsey"

Here’s a great a tidbit from tonight’s school board meeting agenda:

D.3 Communication Strategy for Fair Assessed Valuation

Comment: Over a two-year period, the assessed valuation for property in the West Contra Costa Unified School District declined by 19% resulting in substantial hikes in property taxes for property owners in making payments on the district’s bond measures. During the last year property values have increased substantially while re-assessments of properties have not kept pace as required under a key modification to Proposition 13 (1978). The communication consulting firm, Whitehurst/Mosher has been retained to support the district’s effort to have assessed values comply with the Prop 13 requirements.

John Whitehurst and Jill Nelson-Golub from Whitehurst/Mosher will provide a report to the Board on how the district engage local officials and communities to ensure that the 2014 assessments are aligned with Prop 13 values.

So, basically, the West Contra Costa school district wants to use money that could be used for instruction to hire consultants to pressure local government officials to raise the assessments on people’s properties, so taxpayers pay more in taxes overall, but the percentage rate on school bonds is lower than it would be otherwise, so the school district can say they’ve held down the individual rates, so the electorate (presumably at the next Presidential election) must approve yet another (7th) bond measure that raises taxes more… With the passage of the Local Control Funding Formula, our district will even be able to hire an extra team of consultants for this.

I am totally verklemt. I love this school district! Where else can I see such a unique political science experiment in progress. Well, there is a price for admission for some of us. What can Charles Ramsey not get away with?