October Is Public Education Month

Karla A. Trippe

The SaddleBrooke Democratic Club’s focus is on public education during October. At the club meeting on Oct. 10, members received an update on the upcoming Oracle School District election. The school board is asking voters to approve Proposition 481, an Override Continuation. This funding measure supplements the basic school budget from the Arizona State General Fund. It is not a new tax but a continuation of one SaddleBrooke residents are already paying.

Ballots will be mailed out on Oct. 12 and should be mailed back by Oct. 31 or dropped off at the polling place in the Oracle School District, 2618 W. El Paseo, Oracle. A yes vote for the override continuation will help ensure full-day kindergarten, physical education, and special programs such as Tech Academy, music, and art. Sadly, in Arizona, these school activities are considered “extras” and must be paid for by local funding.

Members also previewed the 2024 campaign, “Stand Up for Freedom.” It focuses on protecting Arizonans’ fundamental freedoms and creating awareness of candidates who support these freedoms running for state house and senate seats.

In addition, members learned about plans by the Arizonans for Reproductive Freedom. Volunteers will seek signatures to support a proposed constitutional amendment that guarantees reproductive freedoms.

Members had the opportunity to meet Patrick Melvin who is running for Pinal County Sheriff in the 2024 Democratic primary. Melvin brings a substantive amount of police experience to the position. He retired from the Phoenix Police Department and was hired as Maricopa’s first officer and chief following the city’s incorporation. He also served as police chief of Port Arthur, Texas, and the Salt River Indian Community.

Finally, information was provided about the club’s annual dinner on Feb. 4, 2024, at 5 p.m. at the MountainView Ballroom. The cost is $85 per person. The guest speaker is Adrian Fontes, Arizona Secretary of State, who will speak on “Protecting Voters Rights.” Members can sign up and pay on the club’s website www.saddlebrookedemocrats.org, and anyone interested in attending a meeting should also visit the website.