Comment and analysis on all things Charlotte

WBTV Actually Admits School Bureaucrats Flim-Flammed Broke Taxpayers Into an Unnecessary Tax Hike

WBTV just admitted that we raised taxes on half the economically brutalized tax base in this county earlier this year for NO reason other than to grow government for the sake of growing it. MeckDeck cried foul on this weeks ago, after it became clear that Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools grossly exaggerated its supposedly disastrous budget situation in the media only to walk away with an additional $26 million it doesn’t even need.

Finally, this weekend, another member of the local media joins us in reporting the full truth about the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools flim-flam. Hats off to WBTV’s Russell Dedrick for that.

CMS cried broke when it knew it wasn’t, Mecklenburg County Commissioner Jim Pendergraph told WBTV.

CMS officials knew they were going to get about $30 million more from the state before they cried broke, WBTV reported. [Pendergraph] believes if other county commissioners knew that information, the district would have received less than the $26 million the district got from the county.

CMS is now rolling in the dough. The district now has enough money to hire hundreds of people when CMS first told the community hundreds would be laid off.

“We need the money,” Pendergraph said. “$26 million equates to a two and half cents on the tax rate and I think it’s the taxpayers who are taking it on the chin, and it’s about time somebody stood up and said I want my money back.”

Pendergraph believes CMS duped the county.

To believe that this is an accident, you’d either have to be a moron, or Democrat County Commission Chairperson Jennifer Roberts. She says CMS can’t be blamed for estimating wrong. But what is telling is that she isn’t willing to ask that the school system give back the $26 million it doesn’t need to taxpayers, which means she is quite content with the situation.

Meanwhile, in thousands of households across the county suffering from the region’s 11.2% unemployment rate, parents are trying to figure out how to put food on the table and hang on to the homes Roberts and crew are jacking the taxes up on for no other reason than the love of big government. And they are getting away with it because the local media will barely report the story.

After months of coverage of the supposedly dire budget straights CMS’ poor students were in and the educational genocide that was sure to befall them, I’m talking literally dozens of articles and news reports by TV news outlets and the Charlotte Observer, you’d think the local media would be interested in asking the same questions WBTV did, and pointing out that CMS appears to have flim-flammed county taxpayers. Instead there is virtual silence.

Up next? These same media outlets will help CMS cry broke again next year, providing dozens of drama-packed stories and articles so the schools can pull the same flim-flam again. How do I know? The CMS/media cabal did this successfully in 2010, when CMS cried broke but ended up with a budget that was $10 million larger than the year before. Just watch.

Charlotte is already less competitive taxwise than much of the South East and Raleigh for business recruitment. We face more potential upcoming blows to the backbone of our local economy, the banking/finance sector. This is not the time to hike taxes for the heck of it. This community can’t afford it if it wants to compete for jobs and businesses.

6 Responses to “WBTV Actually Admits School Bureaucrats Flim-Flammed Broke Taxpayers Into an Unnecessary Tax Hike”

  • Aug
    15
    2011

    Time to defund CMS. Let a thousand private schools bloom.

    They’ve cried wolf one time too many — next year, we all need to be more proactive about getting the word out that CMS is full of crap when it comes to budget numbers.

  • Aug
    15
    2011

    If only this were novel, but of course it is the mundane norm for CMS. IT is also the norm for the BOCC and the city council to invoke the spector of closed libraries, fires unfought, and crime run amok for lack of police. They’ve been doing it every off election year for a very long time. The irony is that the BOCC itself was gamed, just as they game the citizens.

  • Aug
    15
    2011

    Tara, Great job on your past story and this one. As Tandemfusion points out, financial questions are just as big on the City side–and you are right:

    “And they are getting away with it because the local media will barely report the story.”

  • Aug
    16
    2011

    Clay,
    The problem with your solution is …… who is going to feed all the children if CMS is out of business? LOL.

  • Aug
    16
    2011

    I have a modest proposal to offer on that subject. ;-)

  • Aug
    17
    2011

    Tara, I agree with what you are saying in this article. CMS should give this money back. I would ask you what can be done to put pressure on these county commissioners? We are quickly becoming New Jersey with property taxes.

    Is there any way to challenge these people on this subject?

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