I attended tonight’s BCSD Board of Trustees meeting. Following are the comments I made regarding Paul Bates’ resignation. Board Public Statement Policy requires that speakers not refer to people by name, hence my referring to Paul Bates as “the former Chairman of the Board” in this statement.
I am sorry to see the former Chairman of the Board need to resign from the Blaine County School District Board of Trustees. He takes the high road in choosing to step down from a position of public trust. He could have chosen to maintain his seat; however, that action would most likely be seen by many as hypocritical. How can one who sits on expulsion hearings for under age substance use also make it possible for such behavior to occur in his home? Rather than venturing into that gray area, the former Chairman chose to make a clear statement that underage substance use and abuse is not to be tolerated in our community. I commend him for his decision.
There are some in Blaine County who might take this situation as an opportunity to kick a man while he’s down. To such people I say: such tactics only reflect badly on you.
At one time in our community, social hosting was seen as the lesser of two evils. However, it is my belief that social hosting of minors simply exacerbates a complex problem. Having homes in our community where minors know they have easy access to alcohol does not reduce underage drinking. It is my opinion that such homes likely increase the amount underage drinking. I commend our former Board Chairman for acknowledging the changing climate of what is acceptable here in Blaine County and for recognizing that a School Board Trustee is held to a higher than average standard of accountability. I wish him and his family all the best.