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Letter: Save taxes, jobs: Keep Skyward

5:03 PM, Feb. 13, 2013  |  Comments
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The Wisconsin Department of Administration and Department of Public Instruction's decision to erroneously award Infinite Campus the contract to provide student information services to every school district in the state will raise property taxes for every homeowner in Wisconsin.

Skyward's system is used in more than 50 percent of the districts in the state; Infinite Campus has 10 percent. That means that 90 percent of the districts will need to convert (398/443). Conversion costs are the responsibility of each district. The Stevens Point district has estimated their implementation cost at just under $500,000. If we conservatively estimate an average cost of $100,000 per district that comes to a whopping $39.8 million ! The state has budgeted $12.1 million to districts to offset implementation costs. The rest to be paid by property owners of this state! What? Are you kidding me! I thought our governor pledged to cut taxes. Wake up, taxpayers! Protest this decision!

Our esteemed governor has doubled down on his pledge to create 250,000 jobs by 2015. The Stevens Point Journal reported that this decision will cost the state 825 new and current Skyward jobs plus 2,215 new jobs in the surrounding - communities. This decision will create jobs alright - in Minnesota! Lost income tax dollars for our state! Unbelievable!

In these tough economic times we don't need the state creating a monopoly that will cost taxpayers millions. The free market has always been the best cost control method, not monopolies. The only logical solution is to allow school districts to choose the vendor for their student information system. The absolute best decision for the taxpayers of Wisconsin would be to have Skyward as the sole provider! But at the very least, allow both Infinite Campus and Skyward to provide the services (covering 60 percent of the state's districts).

The current decision will be a financial nightmare for the citizens of Wisconsin. Please contact the DOA and DPI offices as well as the governor, your senators and representatives. Urge them to reconsider the decision. Allow Skyward to serve this state as it has for more than 30 years!

Dave Grabski

Plover

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