Oct 6, 2009

We Will

Philip R. Klein's inflammatory and reckless disregard for the truth is obvious in his latest article on the Southeast Texas Political Review (emphasis is Philip's):
How about this - The school district spends thousands on the Chamber of Commerce for LOBSTER AND DRINKS AT A COC FUNCTION?
Philip knows the real truth: he published on September 7, 2009:
This past week, the SET Political Review filed a Public Information Request for all taxpayer money given to the Beaumont Chamber of Commerce. And guess what? Thousands of your taxpayer dollars to educate the "childrens" [sic] of Beaumont have gone to the Beaumont Chamber of Commerce.
  • On September 10, 2008, the district spent $1,000 dollars of YOUR TAXPAYER DOLLARS to enjoy a night at the Spindletop Awards and Banquet. There was no list of who went - but we can only imagine.
  • Then - it was the yearly membership dues? Of $500.
  • Of course - it is time for lobster - and two tickets for lobsterfest were bought. We hope that the poor "childrens" of the Southend [sic] enjoyed their dinner.
  • And finally - $40.00 bucks for .... a volunteer awards luncheon.
Now you might say that just under $1,700 of YOUR TAXPAYER DOLLARS is not a big deal?
Ignoring the blatant racism, simple math determines that the district spent "just under" $160.00 for the tickets to Lobster Fest. The event is the main fund raiser for the Beaumont Chamber of Commerce economic development efforts.

By his original admission, the entire amount given to the Beaumont Chamber of Commerce is less than Philip's new claim of "thousands...for Lobster and Drinks at a COC function."   Much like his mea culpa in Klein v. Gillam, Philip stands by his first statement and he stands by his second statement.

Most of Philip's article involves cases of purported nepotism:
Dr. Thomas (who runs the district) and his wife Linda (Principal Pietzsch-Macarthur Elem.) salaries total approx.$500,000 per year

What you say? Yes - we did not even know that Dr. Carroll Thomas's wife was a principal in the school district. Talk about nepotism? Right in your face nepotisms. 
Philip's grammar lesson for the day: nepotism has no plural form, like the internets.

Klein admits he's not remotely familiar with the basic facts of this case when he professes ignorance of Principal Linda Thomas' employment. He's also unfamiliar with this issue of nepotism in public schools. The Texas nepotism statutes are found in Chapter 573 of the Government Code.

This instance that Klein describes has already occurred. The Texas Court of Appeals in Pena v Rio Grande City found that a Superintendent is not subject to nepotism laws. Since the board of trustees retained the authority to employ teachers and principals, the district could hire the superintendent's spouse.

However, Attorney General Gregg Abbott disagreed in his Opinion GA-123, where he opined that nepotism statutes apply if the Superintendent has the final authority to hire. Abbott also argued that if this power to hire resides in the Superintendent, then he or she is free to hire the relatives of school board members.

In answer to questions on his conflicting opinion, AG Abbott released another opinion.

Bottom line: While Philip is sniffing underwear, he's missed the real issue. Superintendent Carrol Thomas' contract clearly states that conditions for dismissal include:
Failure to put forth a reasonable effort to achieve a good rapport with parents, the community, staff, or the board; however, failure to accomplish a good rapport under the terms and conditions of this paragraph shall not constitute good cause if it is not due to the fault of the Superintendent.

Intentional falsification of records or documents related to the District's activities;
The ultimate decision in this matter lies with the Beaumont ISD Board of Trustees. Considering seats on the board are determined by election, perhaps H.L. Mencken was right.


Anonymous said...

He is so damned stupid.

Anonymous said...

I don't think Klein has a dog in that hunt unless he expects us to believe he lives in Nederland and pays taxes to the BISD.