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In this atmosphere of uproar over public employee unions serving themselves with taxpayer’s money, it’s mind-blowing to think that the Teacher’s Union is blatantly attempting a further power grab of our school system.

This November, two of the five seats that make up the Coast Community College District Board of Trustees are up for election. The Board has oversight of Orange Coast College, Golden West College, and Coastline Community College, which serve more than 50,000 students in Newport Beach and nearby cities.

The union already controls three of these seats (one held by Jim Moreno, who is up for re-election in Area 1), and is attempting to grab a fourth by financially backing Lynne Riddle for the vacant Area 5 seat. By adding Riddle to the board, the union will gain unprecedented power over how public funds are spent, and based on the past, you can bet it won’t be on students!

To give you an idea of what we are in for if the union gets its way, this board has recently:

●               Refused to declare a financial emergency, which would force their union backers to renegotiate their contracts.  Last year faculty union members received a raise while over 60 classes were eliminated, and thousands of taxpayers lost their jobs.

●               Spent millions of dollars building luxury offices with reserved parking spaces for themselves.  They are the only group of trustees that even have offices.  Meanwhile, 26,000 OCC students are waitlisted for classes.

●               Hired the board chairman’s former law firm to the tune of $540,000 per year when these services can be provided internally for free.

●               Taken control of two college bookstores away from the students and allocated those funds for their own pet projects.

We need to make a stand and stop this madness! We need people on the Board who will represent the students, and not just enrich themselves. Many distinguished faculty members even realize that this has gone too far, and have gone against their union to endorse the other candidates.

As we have seen with our federal government, too much power in the hands of one interest group allows public servants to run amok.  Please help stop this tide of special interest takeovers by turning away Lynne Riddle and Jim Moreno in November!

 

Paul Prioleau

 

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