It was revealed at last night’s School Board Redistricting Public Comment Meeting that the revised plan’s newly created Snoqualmie school board seat won’t materialize until January, 2014. Two years later than many assumed.
Snoqualmie’s growth (evidenced in census data) and state law require re-drawing director district boundary lines every 10 years to match population changes. SVSD is just finishing up their redistricting process. They are completing it now to establish new districts before the November election June filing deadline.
In the revised plan, Marci Busby’s North Bend district is essentially merged with Scott Hodgins district. The lost district is then replaced by a new Snoqualmie district – matching the population explosion in that area. Marci’s and Scott’s terms don’t expire until December 2013, though. State law says representatives can serve out terms if their districts change due to redistricting. Only when their terms expire can Snoqualmie citizens residing in the newly created district run for election. Marci and Scott can continue serving in 2013, but they would need to run against each other as the revised proposal has them residing in the same district.
In summary, the SVSD school board appeared to like the new, revised realignment proposal. Members stated they like this plan way better than the original. The board never pursued the Citizen Plan as a viable option, but did say that plan was “brilliant” in that it brought to light the 2,2,1 board structure – a more fair and equal structure. Opposition to this revised plan was not as strong when compared to the overwhelming disapproval of the original proposal. Knowing this, it appears the revised recommendation will be adopted at the May 26th school board meeting.
The only surprise of the night was the revelation that the new Snoqualmie school board seat cannot be filled by a Snoqualmie citizen until January 2014, as state statute guarantees Marci Busby the right to serve out her term until December 2013.
There are many important school board decisions in the next 2 1/2 years. Some that more directly impact Snoqualmie students. The annexation of Snoqualmie’s only middle school, more boundary changes due to that annexation and new school bonds are just some examples. Having Snoqualmie representation is critical during these two years. This delay in filling the new seat with a Snoqualmie resident is disappointing. There is, though, opportunity for Snoqualmie representation in 2012. That happens if a Snoqualmie citizen chooses to run against incumbent, Craig Husa, in November’s school board election. And wins. Is anyone ready for that challenge? Only time will tell…..