Non-residents of school districts writing against levies?

Who is Jeff Heckathorn, and why did he feel he needed to write statements opposing 14 of the 23 school and fire district levy propositions on the Feb. 8 special election (“Voters to decide fate of critical school funding measures,” The Herald, Jan. 16)?

Obviously he can’t be a resident of all those districts. Another levy opponent, Kathy Gill, wrote against levies in two different school districts. Look at your voter’s pamphlet and you can see.

Reading through the various statements, it seems like the opponents freely plagiarized from one another. “McCleary should have solved this, and until these levies are always voted down, the Legislature will never get the message.” “The districts are trying to sneak taxes in by using a legally established date for the vote.” “The district will find a way to pay for expenses if we take the money away.” “They should pay for replacement roofs from capital funds, not from operations and maintenance.” “Everett should have kept on using 40- to 90-year old buildings, with computer cables stapled to the walls, instead of bringing the central administration together in one place.” And, so on.

It would seem that being a resident in a taxation district should be required in order to submit a statement against. The pro-statements all appear to have been written by concerned citizens who are involved and knowledgeable concerning their districts’ needs. They are the ones to listen to.

And, yes, I remember the dark days after consecutive levy failures in Snohomish, when literally every sheet of colored construction paper had to be counted by parent volunteers helping with class projects.

Joel Niemi


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