What suddenly happened to all of our money?

In Betty Wiest, BOE elections, Jacque Harlowe, new jersey fiscal crisis, VC on March 21, 2009 at 4:40 pm

Maybe some of this Board of Ed reduction is long overdue reduction of bloated waste. But I have some questions: Why are we in a crisis? Our taxes didn’t go down. The budget didn’t go down. Why are we making it one year and failing the next?

Same question for the Village council. What suddenly happened to all of our money? Did we give it away to charity? Was it invested with Madoff? Why are we suddenly in dire consequences?

At the Daily Treat today, we discussed B. Weist’s letter to the Editor in which she pats herself and Jacques Harlow on the back for something or other in today’s Ridgewood News. Presumably this is in anticipation of the Weist Harlow campaign slogan of bring back the good old days, and she is just the person to take advantage of gathering storm clouds for her own benefit. But, did this council spend our way into the red? Or did the prior council (the one Betty was booted from)? Just what happened? Where did the money go? Who is going to be held accountable and when?


  1. Does anyone have an opinion on former superintendent John R. Porter, Jr. ?

  2. Why? What’s he been up to lately?

  3. I tried to read that budget that was online, but you need to be a forensic accountant to figure it out.

    This is a good question, where does all the money go?

  4. And its not even a question so much of tracking down what will go or already did go out the door — the real question is what’s the difference between this year and last? What happened to the money coming in? Have our revenues declined? (I know my taxes haven’t gone down.) Have we been losing money each of the past few years and no one told us? Have we been deficit spending?

  5. Who really does the books, anyway?

  6. I asked the same question of Dr. Fishbein and Mrs. Brogan. Mostly it’s expenses that went up — last year special ed was over $1 million over budget due to students newly being classified and students moving into the district. When students are classified as special ed the district is required to provide whatever services their IEP specifies. The rest is due, from what I recall, to expenses going up more than the allowable tax revenue increase. I believe the answer to the “what happened” was in Dr. Fishbein’s column in the newspaper a couple of weeks ago and is also available on the district website.

  7. The books are done in the Business Administrator’s office but there is an annual audit by an outsider. I would imagine the auditor’s report is available as a public record. I remember seeing it on the agenda of a Board of Education meeting recently.

  8. 546 — that’s helpful, thanks.

  9. Beware the audit. Enron was audited and so, it appears was Bernie Madoff. A school district not far from us was also audited, but the audit did not turn up the fraud that was ongoing for years before. That person just made a mistake and got caught.

    So beware the “audit.”

  10. ooh…enron…bernie madoff…the BOE

    all were audited. the first two collapsed — therefore, the BOE is about to collapse

    hmmm, yes, your logic is flawless…

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