Three Higley School District governing board members, Venessa Whitener, Kim Anderson, and Denise Standage, voted on Sept. 10 to accept $750,000 from the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors to construct and operate a Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fueling station. The reason given is to reduce air pollution caused by buses. Good grief. This unnatural fixation that we are dying in the streets from environmental catastrophe is insane. Board member Jake Hoffman tried in vain to table the vote for further research, presenting an analysis which shows that it will end up costing taxpayers $2.3 million. For example, the district doesn’t even own any CNG vehicles and will have to replace 62 buses and 53 fleet vehicles, which will take years. These three board members are not just misusing taxpayer dollars, but they are doing it without performing due diligence. They are also dabbling in an unproven industry about which they know zilch, and where they have no business, plus they are competing with the private market (Clean n Green is less than five miles from the intended site). The MCBOS will be voting on the acceptance of Higley’s grant application on Sept. 23, so this can be stopped. According to Mr. Hoffman, CNG vehicles represent less than four one-hundredths of one percent of all vehicles registered in the United States. Education should not be the petri dish for unproven, currently unsustainable commodities.
Next thing you know, the Higley school board will be building a solar power plant and laying off teachers.