Last week, in a letter to this newspaper Joseph Broderick, President of the Bayonne Board of Education, tried to explain away the $18 million shortfall that our school system experienced.
Unfortunately, Mr. Broderick still does not want to own up to the seriousness of this budget crisis and his responsibility in it. He refers to the fiscal crisis that cost more than 287 people their jobs, as a “misunderstanding,” and tries to sweep it all under the rug, even my efforts to uncover the truth.
Finally, Mr. Broderick admits that the Board of Ed. spent money it did not have, year after year, from 2011 to 2015, including the money to pay teachers. He further states that the board realized only in November of 2016, that they were spending taxpayer money like drunken sailors.
Simply stated, the board looked the other way, failed to monitor the situation, and ignored its responsibility for more than five years. The result was a huge increase in taxes.
Or, as Mr. Broderick so cold heartedly put it, “We had to raise taxes by 5.62 percent.”
No, Mr. Broderick, you were not forced to raise taxes. You put yourself in that position; you watched the house burn instead of getting water. We have learned from Watergate, Bridge-gate, and Beach-gate, that the cover up is always worse than the crime. As Tallyrand, Napoleon’s foreign minister, said, “It is worse than a crime … it is a mistake.”
As this investigation goes forward, it is only proper for Mr. Broderick, the president of our school board, to testify under oath, before appropriate state committees and panels, as to what he knew and when he first knew it. And, why he chose the unfortunate course of action that he did.
Come clean Mr. Broderick, Come clean.
MICHAEL J. ALONSO
Bayonne School Board Trustee