Letter: Sagebrush report is incomplete

Thank you for your coverage of the recently released report from Capitol Advisors Group on the proposed transfer of students living in the western portion of La Cañada out of Glendale Unified and into La Cañada Unified.

The citizens committee UniteLCF! began working with both districts three years ago to seek a territory transfer. After months of negotiations, the two school districts jointly issued a proposal that recommended a student transfer phase-in and approximately $6.5 million to GUSD over a number of years. Several months later, that proposal was unilaterally discarded by GUSD, which upped its claims to an estimated $23 million. That proposal was quickly characterized by LCUSD as “untenable” and financially ruinous.

This goes to the heart of our objection to the Capitol Advisors report. How could a negotiated framework for a transfer presented to the public in March 2014 suddenly more than triple the claimed monetary impacts to GUSD? I fully expected Capitol Advisors to evaluate GUSD’s monetary claims for reasonableness. Without opining on the legitimacy of GUSD’s financial claims, I find the Capitol Advisors report to be incomplete and flawed. It does little to advance the process.

Tom Smith
Chair, UniteLCF! – One City – One School District
La Cañada Flintridge

Published in the La Canada Valley Sun, May 6, 2016.

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