The above writer has changed her position: see “Why I Changed My ‘No’ to a ‘Yes’ On the ICSD School Budget,” Ithaca Times May 9-15, page 6.
https://issuu.com/ithacatimes/docs/050918 <https://issuu.com/ithacatimes/docs/050918> > On May 6, 2018, at 3:08 PM, Sandy Wold <sandra.w...@gmail.com> wrote: > > Opinion Submission to Ithaca Times: Why I'm Voting NO on the ICSD Budget: the > Need for a Climate-Appropriate Budget and Why We Need to Talk About The 3 > Elephants in the Room (936 words) > > Dear Members of the ICSD School Board: > > I expect to attend and comment at the ICSD Budget Hearing meeting tomorrow > evening, and want you to have my thoughts about why I oppose the budget ahead > of time. I will also name and speak of the three elephants in the room: the > urgent need for Carbon mitigation and sustainability and social justice > education, the equally urgent and important need for methane mitigation and > plant-based nutrition education, and Cornell's ongoing underpayment of taxes > and the impact that has on the lack of affordable housing for working > families, child poverty, the trauma eviction causes children, and child > homelessness. > > First Elephant: ICSD needs a CARBON-NEUTRAL PLAN and needs to integrate > SUSTAINABILITY and SOCIAL JUSTICE into all aspects of classes and school > culture. Given there is less than 1.5 years to meet the Paris Accord > Agreement, that we are nearing 1.5 degree Celsius, that 1.9 degrees Celsius > is not going to be that much different than 2.0, that scientists predict 2.0 > will leave our children with an unlivable planet by 2050, and that we need a > new mindset to solve problems stemming from the old paradigm, I vote NO on > any budget that lacks a Carbon-neutral plan in the budget. In short, I > propose we shorten the 5-day school week by at least one day to divert money > that would otherwise be spent on salaries ($11,000,000+) and water/sewer, > electricity, and transportation fuel, to finance and promptly begin to > install solar panels, efficient lighting, ground or air-source heating > systems, and zero-emission buses. All ICSD staff (including administration) > would necessarily take a 1/5 pay reduction in order to finance our transition > to carbon-neutral schools. This is not just for the common good, but for all > ICSD long-term job security. > > I further propose that the mayor and superintendent declare a state of > emergency for our city, county, and state and call on the governor to ensure > state funding will not be interrupted due to lack of student attendance. > Students staying home would have online reading assignments on the topics of > climate science, sustainability, plant-based nutrition, and engage in > moderated online discussions on race relations. Moderation would be done by > scholars and community leaders who would take live questions by Tweet, such > as the one held at the Brooklyn Historical Society in response to Ferguson > (CSPAN, 2014). In addition, students could also opt to spend the day > shadowing adults who work in sustainability and report back to their school > or class via podcast or Youtube channel. Food security for students who do > not have enough to eat at home shall be addressed. Lastly, when back in > school, the learning that happened on the day off would be documented and > connected to all subjects. > > In addition to carbon-neutral and energy conservation planning, I recommend > we not buy the proposed 8 full-size gasoline buses ($500k each). Rather, let > us lessen the demand on the ones we have and/or buy 5 zero-emission buses > ($800k). I also recommend we begin to replace all ICSD fountains with Elkay > wall-mounted fountains ($961 each), which filter out lead and other harmful > contaminants. It would be even more climate-friendly if we could find a > filter fountain without refrigeration. > > The second elephant in the room is METHANE MITIGATION. With or without NYS, > ICSD should promote and embrace Meatless Mondays to educate ICSD staff, > students, and families (K-12) about the health and environmental benefits of > eating less animal products. ICSD should offer plant-based nutrition > education to counter the racial and ethnic bias in the US Dietary Guidelines > and educate about how racism, racial bias, and government policies resulted > in cultural destruction and the loss of community-specific food production > methods. They should also educate how the US Dietary Guideline programs > promote excess chronic disease in minority communities and perpetuate > poverty. Finally, ICSD should educate ICSD how to ameliorate the negative > impact of federal guidelines and food support programs on the health of > minority communities. To not do this is to be complicit with animal > agriculture industry and pharmaceutical greed. > > The third elephant in the room is CORNELL'S UNDERPAYMENT OF TAXES and > "voluntary contribution." Many towns complain that universities and big > businesses like Amazon contribute to gentrification, loss of affordable > housing, poverty, and homelessness due to evictions for non-payment of rent. > See Seattle/Amazon clash (Slate, May 2018). The Green Street Parking Garage > Project may be our last strong-hold on this topic. While most of the wealth > in Ithaca is held by white academics and white real estate developers, our > poverty rate is the third highest in the state, and that is not acceptable. > The working poor have been forced to move 30-45 minutes away, making their > children (our ICSD children) more vulnerable to the rise in gas prices and > food insecurity in many areas. We need a formula that is transparent and > correlates Cornell wealth with our poverty rate and a formula that itemizes > the City services that Cornell staff and students have on our roads, > water/sewer, and fire/police, plus the accelerated deterioration of > infrastructure. Cornell's voluntary contribution of $6.2 million per year is > considered very low compared to other universities, and is inadequate. Given > our lack of affordable housing and that we have the third highest poverty > rate in New York State, this is not acceptable. > > In conclusion, like the air we breathe, sustainability, equity, and social > justice need to be woven into every school and City decision. Please see > links below for background info, and I look forward to seeing you tomorrow. > Sincerely, > > Sandy Wold > Ithaca, NY 14850 > ICSD Budget Hearing: Monday, May 7, 2018 at 6:00 PM in the District Office > Board Room at 400 Lake Street. If you cannot make it, there is a tele-Town > Hall meeting that same night at 7pm. > > http://www.ithacacityschools.org/districtpage.cfm?pageid=214 > <http://www.ithacacityschools.org/districtpage.cfm?pageid=214> > https://datausa.io/profile/geo/ithaca-ny/ > <https://datausa.io/profile/geo/ithaca-ny/> > http://www.ihstattler.com/static/february2008/view.php?a=_nCornellContributions > > <http://www.ihstattler.com/static/february2008/view.php?a=_nCornellContributions> > http://www.ithaca.com/news/cornell-compared-ithaca-mayor-calls-out-his-alma-mater-on/article_e8e56ab4-93e9-11e3-90ed-0019bb2963f4.html > > <http://www.ithaca.com/news/cornell-compared-ithaca-mayor-calls-out-his-alma-mater-on/article_e8e56ab4-93e9-11e3-90ed-0019bb2963f4.html> > https://shadowproof.com/2018/05/02/labor-progressive-organizations-seattle-ramp-pressure-amazon-fund-affordable-housing/ > > <https://shadowproof.com/2018/05/02/labor-progressive-organizations-seattle-ramp-pressure-amazon-fund-affordable-housing/> > http://www.restroomdirect.com/elkay-water-cooler-LZS8WSLK.aspx?gclid=Cj0KCQjw5fDWBRDaARIsAA5uWTjmFLnRoiUjBIi_wF_lN9EKQZh_1C0GuJilDgUxlFvkaHfu4t8sqL8aAuiCEALw_wcB > > <http://www.restroomdirect.com/elkay-water-cooler-LZS8WSLK.aspx?gclid=Cj0KCQjw5fDWBRDaARIsAA5uWTjmFLnRoiUjBIi_wF_lN9EKQZh_1C0GuJilDgUxlFvkaHfu4t8sqL8aAuiCEALw_wcB> > http://www.restroomdirect.com/pdf/Elkay/Elkay%20LZS8WSLK,%20LZS8WSSK,%20LZSDWSLK,%20LZSDWSSK%20Spec%20Sheet.pdf > > <http://www.restroomdirect.com/pdf/Elkay/Elkay%20LZS8WSLK,%20LZS8WSSK,%20LZSDWSLK,%20LZSDWSSK%20Spec%20Sheet.pdf> > --- > CLIMATE CHANGE ACTION YOU CAN TAKE: Divesting from animal agriculture by > switching to a plant-based diet can help our planet transform. A vegan diet > is heart-healthy, non-violent, anti-colonial, and sustainable! Pledge the > Ithaca 10 or 30-day (Plant-based) Vegan Challenge! > www.facebook.com/groups/IthacaVeganChallenge/ > <https://www.facebook.com/groups/IthacaVeganChallenge/> > Instagram #VeganPlanet2020 > --- > Sandy Wold, sustainability educator/artist > B.S. Chemistry/Biochemistry, University of Florida > M.S. Science Education, UC Santa Cruz/SUNY Cortland > https://www.linkedin.com/in/sandy-wold-877114a7/ > <https://www.linkedin.com/in/sandy-wold-877114a7/> > https://sandy-wold.squarespace.com/ <https://sandy-wold.squarespace.com/> > -- > Cayugabirds-L List Info: > Welcome and Basics <http://www.northeastbirding.com/CayugabirdsWELCOME> > Rules and Information <http://www.northeastbirding.com/CayugabirdsRULES> > Subscribe, Configuration and Leave > <http://www.northeastbirding.com/CayugabirdsSubscribeConfigurationLeave.htm> > Archives: > The Mail Archive > <http://firstname.lastname@example.org/maillist.html> > Surfbirds <http://www.surfbirds.com/birdingmail/Group/Cayugabirds> > BirdingOnThe.Net <http://birdingonthe.net/mailinglists/CAYU.html> > Please submit your observations to eBird <http://ebird.org/content/ebird/>! > -- -- Cayugabirds-L List Info: http://www.NortheastBirding.com/CayugabirdsWELCOME http://www.NortheastBirding.com/CayugabirdsRULES http://www.NortheastBirding.com/CayugabirdsSubscribeConfigurationLeave.htm ARCHIVES: 1) http://email@example.com/maillist.html 2) http://www.surfbirds.com/birdingmail/Group/Cayugabirds 3) http://birdingonthe.net/mailinglists/CAYU.html Please submit your observations to eBird: http://ebird.org/content/ebird/ --