Reporters have a skill to make complex stuff easy to understand, but I’ve have a hard time with the school district court case from the beginning.
I’m not a Law & Order viewer so maybe I need a broader background in legal issues.
The following statements in today’s Daily Times (DT) add to my confusion:
DT: The school board passed a resolution to authorize their attorney to execute a settlement. The settlement agreement had been announced in court last month.Me: Six out of eight board members gave their blessing for their attorney to tell the courts it’s okay to go ahead with a settlement that was agreed to last month.
DT: Preliminary and final approval for the settlement finalizes on August 15.Me: The school district attorney's okay starts a new process. There is a preliminary and final procedure the courts must take to make some last minute changes, I guess.
DT: As part of the settlement, $9.7 million was added to Chester-Upland funding.Me: The state was so sure Chester-Upland was going to say yes that they fronted them $9.7 million which is part of the settlement that won’t be fianlized until August. Or, will they be adding $9.7 million to the already approved budget now that the board has agreed on the settlement that won’t be finalized until August?
DT: The secret settlement requires the state to provide $30 million of relief to Chester-Upland from current financial liabilities to vendors, staff and charter schools.Me: Does that mean Chester-Upland doesn’t have to pay those bills and those folks will never get paid? Or, does that mean the state is going to pay those bills?
DT: The board did not disclose the terms of the settlement. Settlement figures to be disclosed to the public once the final agreement is executed.Me: We’ll never know what the board agreed to, but we will know what the final approved settlement is. Shouldn’t the board get to vote on the final settlement agreement? But wait! Go back to the top. DT said the settlement agreement had been announced in court last month. Therefore, it's not a secret. So, what's the secret?
Maybe it’s just me, but why would anyone be asked to agree on anything that isn’t finalized? That’s like me telling my contractor to install a new stainless steel double sink in my kitchen. He then proceeds to install a white porcelain double sink, and I have no recourse.
I’m going to start watching Law & Order reruns.