Loves college, but $150K for cell phones?

By Mark Faris | Published Saturday, September 29, 2012

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I am so proud that we in Wise County have a community college. A few years ago, when we voted on the tax for the college district, I was once again proud to see Wise County citizens vote for this tax. I appreciate the work our elected officials do for us, especially our county commissioners. I’ve always enjoyed that I can sit back and let them make spending decisions for us, and they always do a great job.

Until now.

I about choked on my potato chip when I read that the county commissioners approved a $150,000 expenditure to get cell phones working inside of the new college. Why do we need cell phones inside the school? Heck, my understanding is that the teachers and professors at colleges have a hard time getting students to turn off their cell phones and not use them in class! I am currently working on a graduate degree at a university in the Metroplex, and cell phones don’t work inside of our building. I have to go outside if I want to make a call. What’s wrong with that?

“So,” you ask, “what if there is an emergency?” What did we do before cell phones? If it’s that big of an emergency, call the school and someone will deliver a message to the classroom. In the meantime, call 911! “Well, the professors and staff need their cell phones.” Why? Don’t they have landlines at the school? Most businesses ban their employees from using personal cell phones at work. Why is the college any different?

Maybe I’m missing something. I’ve been wrong before. But do we really need to spend $150,000 to get cell service inside a college? When you get your property tax bill in the coming days, look at it, and then remember that over $100,000 of your tax dollars are going toward ensuring that students and teachers can use their cell phones and text messages inside our new community college.

Mark Faris

2 Responses to “Loves college, but $150K for cell phones?”

  1. Another example of If You Give them the money, they will find a way to waste it.

  2. I can understand them needing cell coverage in a college, and wanting it. These “students” are adults, not children. They (some of them) pay a heavy price for their education. I would rather teach them the hard way that if they waste their time on using the cell phone, then they suffer the consequences by failing the class. Cell phones are a part of our lives. The good old days of not having them are gone. And if a shooter walks in and starts shooting, I doubt anybody would be able to walk to a land line. Sorry,I have to disagree on this one. I do wonder though why the carriers couldn’t foot most of the expense though.


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