I enjoyed your Aug. 23 article, “Expanded Garfield campus debuts,” about the history and opening of the Glendale Community College Garfield campus expansion.
Your piece accurately recounted the epic, hours-long Board of Trustees meeting in 2005 during which my fellow board members and I agreed to increase the allocation of Measure G bond monies to the Garfield campus expansion when significant cost overruns convinced some that the project should be abandoned.
An important part of the story is that the trustees encountered intense, unprecedented lobbying to abandon the Garfield expansion project by the highest ranking administrators, and some faculty members who worked at the main campus.
The trustees nonetheless remembered their many promises during the 2002 Measure G bond campaign to make expansion, and salvation, of the Garfield campus a top priority. We held firm to our commitment to the community, particularly to the citizens of South Glendale, who turned out in droves to vote for Measure G.
The first lesson that I learned from the experience is that voters and elected officials must remain ever vigilant whenever a bond measure passes to ensure that the money is actually spent as the voters intended.
The second lesson I learned was how little concern many people who work in North Glendale had for those who live in South Glendale. Those who lobbied for taking the bond money away from the Garfield campus knew few, if any, people who utilized the facility.
In contrast, virtually all the trustees had relatives and friends who had taken classes there and, as a result, knew firsthand about the unacceptable lack of parking and rain leaks.
Ultimately, however, the success of the Garfield campus expansion was not a rare victory of South over North Glendale. It was a victory for the entire city, and the city will greatly benefit when graduates of the programs at the Garfield campus join the workforce.
Editor’s note: King is a former member of the Glendale Community College Board of Trustees.