Letter: Rifle EDC supports 4A, 4B | PostIndependent.com

Letter: Rifle EDC supports 4A, 4B

On behalf of the board of directors of the Rifle Regional Economic Development Corp., I am writing this letter of support for Garfield Re-2 ballot initiatives 4A and 4B.

 Currently, the Garfield Re-2 school district receives approximately half the mill levy override dollars per pupil as our neighboring school districts. Garfield Re-2 teachers are paid, on average, $10,000 less than teachers in our neighboring districts, and the Garfield Re-2 school district loses approximately 250 staff members every two years.  

This amount of turnover has a significant impact on the quality of education our students receive and is costly to the district, as they must continually devote taxpayer dollars to recruiting and training new teachers. There is also overcrowding at Highland Elementary and Cactus Valley Elementary, which has resulted in students having to spend their school days in modular units. This presents safety issues for students and staff.

One of the biggest assets to economic development in a community is the quality of the schools. Issues 4A and 4B are reasonable requests that will allow Garfield Re-2 to be competitive with our surrounding school districts in teacher compensation and keep our students safe inside our school buildings. In addition, a financial oversight committee has been created through the District Accountability Committee that will ensure funds are directed to these uses.

 Please join us in voting yes on 4A and 4B and providing the local support we need for great schools.

Michael Langhorne,

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executive director

Rifle Regional Economic Development Corp.