Untimely, inappropriate, unnecessary and "somewhat threatening" were the words some Jordan School Board members used to describe a letter sent from the seceding district's transition team that insisted board members stop spending money on capital projects pending the division of property.

The letter sent from Jordan-east transition team attorneys voiced concerns that the board was, with the knowledge of the impending district split, spending money at an "unprecedented rate" for projects on the district's west side.

It also stated that in the event of arbitration the transition team for the new east-side district will seek "a substantial payment" to offset the money spent by the school district in the past several months.

Even so, in a 4-3 vote this week, the Jordan Board of Education approved construction and remodeling projects to the tune of more than $13 million to be done over the summer.

"(The letter) addresses only east-side perceived needs and does not look at the district as as whole and where the demands and pressures are as far as expenditures," said J. Dale Christensen, president of the Jordan Board of Education. "If we were to abide by this directive we would be in jeopardy of (not) fulfilling our fiduciary responsibilities as board members."

Ellen Wallace, a member of the Jordan board, said the transition teams should stick to the job of deciding how to divide the district assets and let the elected members of the Board of Education "exercise their statutory authority to allocate district resources.

"It saddens me that the focus of the district division has turned to money and fund balances, rather than on what is in the best interest of students," Wallace said.

The board has yet to take a stance on the letterand Christensen said they members plan to look into it further and discuss any valid concerns.

Last fall east-side residents voted to split from the Jordan school district. Currently two transition teams are in negotiations on how to adequately and fairly split the district's assets and liabilities.


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