Letters

No Inequity?

Jul 12, 2017

To the Editor:

In reading Tom Tallon’s letter (“School Funding Tricks,” 6/21), I was amazed that he apparently sees no inequity in the funding formula for the Southern Regional School District. He writes: “The cost per pupil is the cost per pupil, period. A student from Ship Bottom costs the district the same as a student from Stafford.” On that, I would agree with him.

However, he goes on to write: “It is only when a statistical sleight of hand is applied that the illusion of inequities appears.” Really? Ship Bottom, which has the lowest cost per pupil of LBI towns, pays $51,300 per pupil it sends while Stafford pays $4,100 per pupil. Those are the facts, not a “statistical sleight of hand.”

Messrs. Danna and Songer (6/28) are right when they say “the situation is equally unfair to every LBI taxpayer.”

No one is talking about “messing” with the funding for the school district, simply correcting the inequitable formula for paying for that funding.

The LBI taxpayers fund 80 percent of the school budget while sending approximately 10 percent of the students and having only minority representation on the school board. If Mr. Tallon sees that as equitable or “sleight of hand,” I certainly wouldn’t want him negotiating on my behalf.

Messrs. Danna and Songer’s letter informed me that Mr. Tallon is a councilman in Ship Bottom. Even though he was not speaking on behalf of Ship Bottom borough, his position in its governance should have been made known to the reader by him.

John J. Prout Jr.

Brant Beach

Editor’s Note: Tom Tallon did identify himself as a Ship Bottom councilman in a follow-up letter (“As Fair as Can Be,” 7/5).

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