Port Authority Nixes Donation Idea For Schools

By  //  April 4, 2013

BREVARD COUNTY • PORT CANAVERAL, FLORIDA – The chairman of the Canaveral Port Authority says a legal opinion has nixed the notion that the port could give Brevard Public Schools money to keep schools operating that are slated to be closed.

Canaveral Port Authority Vice Chairman Tom Weinberg says the port is prohibited from making a donation to Brevard Public Schools. (Image by Ed Pierce)

In a press statement released Thursday morning, Thomas Weinberg said he regretted raising hopes of students and teachers that such a donation could be made.

“At the March 27  Canaveral Port Authority meeting, the full board authorized the hiring of an attorney with expertise in government law, David Tolces, to render an opinion regarding the legality of a financial contribution to the Brevard County School Board,” Weinberg is quoted in the release.

“It is clear from Tolces opinion that Canaveral Port Authority is prohibited  from making a donation to Brevard County Schools.”

Weinberg goes on to say in the release, “The opinion confirms to what to many of us was obvious — that it is inappropriate and illegal to make such a donation.

“It is unfortunate that because of misinformation, numerous parents and teachers now have their hopes dashed and their hearts broken despite touching our hearts with their impassioned pleas on behalf of Brevard’s children for whom we all care.”

The legal opinion has been forwarded to Brevard County School Board chairwoman Dr. Barbara Murray.

The idea to give up to $5 million to the schools was proposed by Commissioner Bruce Deardoff in March to prevent three area schools, Clearlake Middle School, Gardendale Elementary Magnet School and South Lake Elementary School from closing in May because of a $30.4 million revenue shortfall.

Deardoff also announced at the March 27 meeting that he is resigning from his seat on the board.

1 Comment

  1. Personally I don’t think Port Canaveral money should go to the schools. BUT, since the Port was created by the taxpaying voters of the district, it seems to me that the taxpaying voters of the district could change the Port Charter to require an annual payment to the school system.

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