Linman resigns Re-1 school board position |

Linman resigns Re-1 school board position

Pete FowlerPost Independent StaffGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

Sonja Linman recently dropped out of the Roaring Fork School District school board race, leaving District D in Glenwood Springs without a candidate.Linman planned to run, but recently accepted a job with the Aspen Community Foundation. Being on the school board could have become a conflict of interest.Linman, who helped form Yampah Mountain High School, was appointed in January to a school board seat vacated by Susan Hakanson.”With a deep sense of loss, I wish to let you know that I no longer intend to run for the District D seat this fall,” she wrote in a letter to the board. “I am excited about the new career opportunity I have accepted with the Aspen Community Foundation, and believe that it is only ethical for me to avoid overlapping interests.”District D covers the northern part of Glenwood Springs and stretches east and west at its north end as far as Canyon Creek and No Name.Linman didn’t return a phone message seeking comment.Bill Lamont picked up a petition to run against incumbent Bruce Wampler on Monday. He said he’s concerned about RFSD schools losing students, especially in Carbondale. He also said there seems to be a low graduation rate in Carbondale. Losing students reduces funding, which reduces teaching positions, which cuts back programming, which loses more students in a vicious cycle, he said. The district office also needs to be more responsive when someone raises an issue, he added.”By being retired and having the time to spend on it I can maybe help build that bridge,” he said. “I was a city and regional planner for 42 years, worked with city councils, planning boards and school boards.”Lamont is also on the county library district board.The other candidate seeking re-election is Brad Zeigel in District B (Carbondale).Being on the school board hasn’t turned out to be the most popular gig in town.The 2005 election was canceled because no outside parties ran against incumbent school board members, Hallford said. Superintendent Judy Haptonstall has said serving on the school board is a tough job that gives no pay while requiring a lot of time and effort.The board makes policy decisions affecting public schools in Basalt, Carbondale and Glenwood Springs, and utilizes a budget with more than half of its revenues provided by local taxes. For the 2007-2008 fiscal year, there’s about $45.25 million budgeted in the district’s general fund. Board members also make decisions about the future direction of the schools and education in the district. Terms are normally four years with staggered elections held every two years.Board members must attend two regular meetings each month that typically last five hours each. They spend time preparing for those meetings and attend other special meetings for another five or six hours a month. They also participate in districtwide committees and boards such as the district and building accountability committees, the family resource center board and the BOCES board.To qualify for election, a candidate must have been a registered voter and resident of the school district for at least one year before the election. They also must live in the district they will represent.Candidates must file a notice of intent to run and a nomination petition. Those can be obtained at the district office at 1405 Grand Ave. in Glenwood Springs. Completed petitions with 50 signatures from registered voters within district need to be submitted to the office before 1 p.m. on Aug. 31. Contact Cyndy Hallford at 384-6009 for more information.Contact Pete Fowler: 945-8515, ext. 16611 pfowler@postindependent.comPost Independent, Glenwood Springs Colorado CO

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