Is AWC a good investment for La Paz County? Ken MacFarland made a good case it is not. AWC Yuma could care less that La Paz has the poorest/oldest population in Arizona. Yuma does, however, use our numbers in every grant they apply for and get, which amounts to millions and millions more dollars pouring into Yuma’s coffers every year, from which La Paz students receive no benefit.
I disagree with Mr. MacFarland when he states; “La Paz County cannot realistically detach from AWC.” The taxpayers of La Paz County don’t know how realistic detachment is, because the county supervisors have refused for seven years now to investigate the county’s legal position.
Arizona law requires La Paz County to have a relationship with an institution of higher learning; that is, education past high school. What qualifies: a community college, a four-year college, a university, a trade school, a technological school, etc. There are many institutions that would be very interested in La Paz, and that is why AWC Yuma doesn’t want us to know anything, about everything.
We need our own three-person PAID Governing Board to control what happens with our money. We need a sensible formula; the amount Yuma gets over and above what is spent in our county should not exceed 20 percent. If the La Paz tax collected is $6 million; $4.8 million should be spent here on our students, Yuma is spending less than a million dollars per year.
Former Associate Dean & Director AWC, La Paz County