Trump should replace Shulkin with Dayton’s Glenn Costie

Glen Costie via DEE MOORMAN

Glen Costie via DEE MOORMAN

When Bob McDonald got the boot from the VA by Donald Trump I was shocked. A republican businessman, veteran, West Point grad seemed like the ultimate VA Chief for Trump. That he replaced him with an Obama era VA employee, Dr. David Shulkin was a surprise. Now, Shulkin has apparently been sent to the Trump Boardroom, according to the NY Times:

President Donald Trump is considering ousting embattled Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin, who has faced an insurgency within his department and fresh allegations that he used a member of his security detail to run personal errands.

Trump has floated the notion of moving Energy Secretary Rick Perry to the VA to right the ship, believing Shulkin has become a distraction, according to two sources familiar with White House discussions. The sources were not authorized to discuss internal deliberations.

Source: Trump Considers Ousting His VA Secretary in Cabinet Shuffle – The New York Times

Instead of a high profile political appointee, why doesn’t Trump really shake things up, and put the guy that was sent to clean up messes in Dayton, Phoenix and Cincinnati, to the post? Glenn Costie was a VA lifer, working his way up in the system, and becoming the chief culture troubleshooter. Recently retiring from the Dayton VA, he was quickly picked up by Ohio Hospice to lead their veterans care initiatives.

Compared to Rick Perry, Costie actually has the experience in the VA system to make real, honest change.

And, he’s a damn nice guy.

DPS Chaos and the secret agenda Lolli won’t tell you about

Interim Superintendent Libby Lolli likes to show projections of declining enrollment predicted by consultants as the driving force for “rightsizing” the district.

Don’t believe a word that comes out of her mouth.

If you want to know why enrollment is dropping, and will plummet after her grand plan is implemented (if it even can be) is that the parents are tired of being shuffled around like playing cards.

I’ve said it before, the enrollment drop started when outgoing Superintendent reconfigured buildings at the last minute to create the three middle schools. Parents at high performing K-8 Schools like Horace Mann, Eastmont, Wright Brothers, Eastmont, Valerie were unhappy about having to send their kids to the three new middle schools: Wogaman, EJ Brown and Wright Brothers. Then we added 7-8 to Belmont and Meadowdale HS. Then, the next year, we went to 4 bell times- screwing with bus times for parents with multiple kids in different schools. No warning, no planning, no discussion. You could have to get kids ready at 4 different times. Hello?

Lolli obviously likes Junior High Schools- because she’s willing to gut both the Girls academy and Dayton Boys Prep- by scrapping their 7-8 as well.

The only school and parents she’s wise enough to leave alone is Stivers.

But, that’s only half the crazy-train.

Obviously, Lolli doesn’t understand how we managed to lift the deseg order- with open enrollment. Now, she’s going to start by closing Valerie Elementary- move it over to the Meadowdale elementary building, rename it Valerie, and then scrape Valerie. OK- no problem with that- except, she’s going to tell Meadowdale parents- you have to send your kids to the building closest to your home- while, not? telling that to Valerie parents? Can we say discrimination? Or, tone deaf? Take your pick.

We knew from the get-go that Valerie was a goner- it’s the oldest building in the district except for Stivers- that needs major renovation. And, closing it isn’t the end of the world, nor is the middle school plan- except that it probably guarantees losing at least another 500+ students overnight to charters or moving out of the district or vouchers.

CJ is saying THANK YOU very much.

But, the other moves- closing Jackson Center, which the district just reopened to move the Longfellow kids to, is a flat out handout to the Dayton Metro Library who just found out the people who own the former Delco site across the street aren’t giving them the land for free. $50K an acre hurt their pocketbook too much– so they’ll just move across the street to Jackson Center site- and pay to scrape the building for the district. Remember, library director Tim Kamblitsch was on the task force… now you know why.

The other plan is to move HQ from Ludlow 1 to Ludlow 2. Ostensibly, this is because Ludlow 1 needs $2m in HVAC repairs and is too costly to maintain. Sheila Taylor was almost in tears about losing the “community room” – board room, which DPS employees built with their own hands. Hint- you wouldn’t need such a big room if you didn’t keep screwing up and causing the entire community to come down to scream at you.

Moving the 150 odd people across the street will still have costs, but, don’t worry, just like Jackson Center, they’ve got someone who wants that land and parking lot behind the building… can anyone spell S-I-N-C-L-A-I-R. I can. And you can bet your last dollar that they get it for a steal. As to parking for DPS staff, don’t worry- the district owns the lot down Ludlow past 3rd Perk and the old Avenue Lounge- a block away.

And, we’ll move the 20 or so hard core troublemakers who were doing drill and fill online “learning” as an alternative to suspension, into Ludlow 2 with the HQ staff should keep things interesting. Considering Ludlow 1 implemented key card access on the elevators to the upper floors- for security, how wise is it to bring our most troubled kids into the HQ?

Speakers at the meeting tonight all got to talk as long as they want, except me. Rev Harris thought he’d try to infringe on my 1st Amendment rights and interrupt me and called for my removal. Director of Security Richard Wright made a show of coming out to do Harris’s dirty work, but as a former Dayton Police Officer who knows the law, and knows my record on winning lawsuits, didn’t take it past belly bumping. Kudos go to new School Board Member Jocelyn Rhynard for stepping up and saying she’d like to hear me out, and that I should have the right to speak. A teacher told me that Al-Hamdani also said something to that effect, but I didn’t hear him. Rhynard scores points. McManus, who should know better just sat there like a stupid caricature from central casting as a stuffed suit. Very disappointed in the man who wanted to be president and is vp.

Standing in the back of the room was Brian Wildermuth, the board lawyer who is managing my case and billing them out the wazoo. He was probably there to meet with them in Executive session to discuss his loss in the former treasurer Craig Jones case. The board will have to decide to appeal, to pay Craig, or to hire him back. Wildermuth will tell them to appeal so he can keep milking his cash cow.

Lolli making a presentation on rightsizing the Dayton Public Schools District with input from the illegal task force

Lolli tells everyone that the Task Force weighed in on the issue

Judge Skelton set a hearing in my case for Thursday at 3pm. The only two issues to be addressed will be is the task force a public body that had input and did they have a secret meeting. Considering Lolli put up slides including the task forces input, the first issue is now resolved. The second issue has video tape- and unlike the tape of the Dunbar Thurgood brawl, this video is crystal clear. Wait for the ruling that they violated the Sunshine laws- and then apply this rule to the issues of “Right Sizing:”

From ORC 121.22

(H) A resolution, rule, or formal action of any kind is invalid unless adopted in an open meeting of the public body. A resolution, rule, or formal action adopted in an open meeting that results from deliberations in a meeting not open to the public is invalid unless the deliberations were for a purpose specifically authorized in division (G) or (J) of this section and conducted at an executive session held in compliance with this section. A resolution, rule, or formal action adopted in an open meeting is invalid if the public body that adopted the resolution, rule, or formal action violated division (F) of this section.

Section F:

(F) Every public body, by rule, shall establish a reasonable method whereby any person may determine the time and place of all regularly scheduled meetings and the time, place, and purpose of all special meetings. A public body shall not hold a special meeting unless it gives at least twenty-four hours’ advance notice to the news media that have requested notification, except in the event of an emergency requiring immediate official action. In the event of an emergency, the member or members calling the meeting shall notify the news media that have requested notification immediately of the time, place, and purpose of the meeting.

The rule shall provide that any person, upon request and payment of a reasonable fee, may obtain reasonable advance notification of all meetings at which any specific type of public business is to be discussed. Provisions for advance notification may include, but are not limited to, mailing the agenda of meetings to all subscribers on a mailing list or mailing notices in self-addressed, stamped envelopes provided by the person.

They will fail the above tests, and the whole process will be dead in the water. And the question is if the next level penalty will be applied:

(4) A member of a public body who knowingly violates an injunction issued pursuant to division (I)(1) of this section may be removed from office by an action brought in the court of common pleas for that purpose by the prosecuting attorney or the attorney general.

It is my hope that Open Government Unit of the State Attorney General decides that the actions of the elected officials who continued to meet, despite multiple warnings, warrants their removal and Mohamed Al-Hamdani, Jeff Mims, William Harris and Robert Walker all find themselves out of office.

Time will tell.




First Four at UD Arena. First, look for the flag

$72 Million dollar renovation.
New seats, new floor, new scoreboards, new sound system, but, wait, where do we put the flag?

Normally, it’s hanging in a prominent position, in wide view, and well lit.

It has a place of honor. It’s respected. And it’s where we turn when the National Anthem plays.

But, we’re UD, home of the Flyers and a town built on the back of Wright Patterson Air Force base, and we don’t need to do any of that.

We’ll have a color guard march out to center court- and display the flag that way, and that’s fine. But, on the rare occasion when there is no color guard- where is the flag?

UD Arena hides our flag in the dark, instead of in plain sight. Photo and options by David Esrati

UD Arena hides our flag in the dark, instead of in plain sight. Photo and options by David Esrati

Well, if you peer behind each of the giant stats boards in the corners- there is a very large flag, one in each corner, hung on the wall, in the shadows.

You can hardly see them through the uber patriotic digital light show they play on the monitors- with stripes waving, as the National Anthem is belted out live from in front of the scorers table.

All this is well and fine. But, in the year of national turmoil where standing or kneeling was headline material, you’d think UD would make an effort to properly display the flag. Just one. Well lit, in a place of prominence.

I brought the issue up to rookie president Dr. Eric Spina- his response- As the Arena is finished in the next two years, the flag issue will be addressed directly and in a positive way. Until then, compromises are being made while still being respectful.”

I brought the issue up to the guy in charge of the renovation, Scott DeBolt, his response: “We will evaluate the placement of the american flag next summer when once we identify the locations of the new sports lighting.”

I’m sorry, but, as a veteran, as a UD Season Ticket holder, as a member of the Dayton community, as we invite people from across the nation to our arena for the first four, I don’t think these answers are satisfactory.

If you want to place a value on the importance of flying our flag- I suggest you ask these guys:

Flag Raising on Iwo Jima by Joe Rosenthal

Flag Raising on Iwo Jima by Joe Rosenthal


Chuck Taylor lied in court

Evidence, in the form of a video, has made it’s way to the Ohio  High School Athletics Association commissioner that proves Dunbar Basketball Coach and Dayton Municipal courts Bailiff Chuck Taylor lied in court. The basketball player who was claimed to have not been on the bench- or left the bench for the brawl, who was supposedly, passing Taylor “in the hallway” has been clearly identified as on the bench, and involved in the altercation.

The Commissioner, Dr. Dan Ross, made Acting Superintendent Libbie Lolli aware of this evidence last week, although she claims in a conversation with me, this morning, to have not seen the video yet. She has requested a copy, and is “working collegially” Ross to sort things out. She will not comment on personnel issues when pressed, she did admit that Dunbar Principal Crystal Phillips is back in the building, but only that District AD Mark Baker and Chuck Taylor are still under contract.

Internally, there are clans forming, blaming various people for this whole fiasco. Some even blame me. Others that fingers are being pointed at by the people who couldn’t follow the rules and properly benched players- are former Coach Pete Pullen, former District AD Jonas Smith, former school board member, state representative and convicted felon Clayton Luckie (who is cousins with Smith).

The reality is, since Mark Baker has been Athletic Director and had his contract hastily renewed last year, and the district was under sanctions and scrutiny of the OHSAA, competent leadership would have immediately stepped in and made sure all the t’s were crossed and i’s dotted after the bench clearing brawl in January. They weren’t. And, now, after spending considerable money defending Dunbar- just so they could play 2 more games in the tournament, the district now risks being banished from state play.

Why kids should have to continue to suffer at the hands of incompetent adults is beyond me.

It’s time for the board to replace Libby Lolli, Associate superintendent Sheila Burton, staff attorney Jyllian Bradshaw, PR Chief Marsha Bonhart (who was Bakers boss), District AD Mark Baker, the Dunbar AD, Principal and the entire coaching staff of the basketball program.

It’s time to sue Chuck Taylor for the court costs.

And it’s time for Taylor to resign from not only coaching but working for the courts, where he routinely is expected to administer this oath multiple times daily:

Oath: I swear that the evidence that I shall give, shall be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me God. Affirmation: I solemnly affirm that the evidence that I shall give, shall be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Only when these things have taken place, can this district start back on a road to recovery.

And, as an aside, Lolli refuses to publish her presentation on school closings in advance for the review session where the public is allowed to comment, and says she hasn’t given it to board members either. For something as important as school closings- for her to not allow more than 7 days of review of her findings, is further proof that this is not an administration that works for the public- but for itself. It’s this kind of thinking that has them in the paper with a crisis of the day.

She’s also unable to estimate how much the district spent with Attorney Brian Wildermuth on his trial to get Dunbar back in the tournament.


School board rushing school closing decision and discussion

To throw more confusion onto the mess that Sheila Burton and Libby Lolli started in December with their school closing imperative- the board is going to hear the public at the review session this Tuesday at 5pm:

“Tonight’s agenda allows time for the Board to hear public input on the district’s plan to right-size our buildings. This is the only topic the public may speak on tonight. If you wish to speak, please approach the podium and sign in. You will be allowed three minutes to make your comments.

Those wishing to address the Board on any topic other than right-sizing the buildings may do so at the next Business Meeting, Tuesday, March 20.”

Of course, normally to discuss the issue- the public and the board would be provided with the “Superintendent Recommendation for Rightsizing District” first- but, no, no slide deck, no analysis. Pop it up just before- ask for input at this meeting- and vote on it the next week.

This is not how a professional organization does it.

Of course, they are in total denial about their breaking of the Sunshine Laws on this issue- which I warned them about and filed a lawsuit. On Friday, the judge set a court date of July 11, 2018. He promised a ruling on if he would block them from taking action on closing until the resolution of this lawsuit by Monday, March 19.

In other news from circus central- Acting Superintendent Libby Lolli is poised to hire Carolyn Mack, wife of former Superintendent Percy Mack, away from her former district, Middletown, as the new head of Professional Development- at $116,000. Didn’t we learn from Rhonda Corr about hiring former “teammates” already? Corr hired Markay Winston, who later ended up ending Corr’s career here.

Considering Lolli has managed to escape any responsibility for the Dunbar basketball fiasco- and the fact that firing LaMark Baker is going to be complicated by failures to properly document all his mistakes under her and Marsha Bonharts watch- sets up the board to rush to give Lolli a contract that they will later regret- the same way the last board renewed Corr’s contract prematurely.

In other news- assistant treasurer Brennon “time clock” Hattery, has resigned, leaving an already rickety treasurers office even more short staffed.

Word is there are a lot of people being looked at for termination, non-renewal, yet, the one senior staff person who seems to survive crisis after crisis- remains like a cockroach after a nuclear Armageddon.

At this point 3 principals are on the chopping block and a top level administrator is planning on leaving the district after just a few years to go back to where he came from.

The scenario isn’t good, and the interim Superintendent seems incapable of stopping the non-stop flow of bad news and trauma to a district that is already wounded.

This board is still in its infancy. It will be amazing if it learns to walk before the State steps in and says enough is enough.

thumbnail of Resolution-School Shootings

Board resolution to be read on the 20th. Click to read PDF

And, as if school closing isn’t enough- they are planning on adopting a resolution on school shootings calling for banning assault weapons. Just to bring out a whole other group of citizens to cause confusion on the 20th.

One last prediction: OHSAA will throw Dunbar out of high school sports, as they can’t keep putting resources into trying to police those who refuse to follow the rules. The district will try their hands at the courts again- and the entire district will find itself out of High School athletics.

Please prove me wrong on this.