Last year I had the privilege of working with concerned Falmouth residents to stop the state-mandated school merger of Falmouth and SAD 51. I came to appreciate the strength of a grassroots effort. We were successful, and Falmouth voters convincingly rejected the proposed merger. However, the state consolidation law remains in force and our stand-alone status could be denied by some future education commissioner. Therefore, I ask you to join me in voting yess on Question 3 to repeal the school district consolidation laws.
There is a statewide grassroots effort to repeal this poorly conceived and written law. As of September, they have raised about $6,300 from many small donors, individuals and towns, in their David-vs-Goliath fight against this law. Interestingly, there is also a group opposing consolidation repeal. They have raised $241,000 from a very small number of large businesses and an even smaller number of individuals (mostly from out of state). I can only assume that Gov. Baldacci leaned on the business donors to financially support this disastrous consolidation law. Whatever their motivation, I doubt these businesses know or care about educational issues in Falmouth, or in any Maine community for that matter. Maine Beer & Wine Wholesalers Assoc. ($25,000 donation to stop repeal) may know something about adult beverages, but what do they know about individual challenges school districts face in educating their children? Please reject this intrusion into our educational system and vote yes on Question 3.