I’ve attached the City Solicitor’s opinion concerning the make-up of the Greater Lowell Technical School Board has requested by City Councilor Kennedy. In short it states:
In our case, the current apportionment scheme of the Greater Lowell Regional Vocational School presents similar facts, and ultimately results in a violation of the one person – one vote principle.
Based on Lowell ‘s population, as well as that of the surrounding towns, the regional school board ‘s representation should be reflective of the following percentages : Lowell, 70%; Dracut 20%; Dunstable, 2%; and Tyngsboro, 8% based on a total population pool of roughly 150,447 residents. Pursuant to the current makeup of the committee based on §I of Chapter 94 of the Acts of 1967, Lowell has 4 members; Dracut has 2 members; and Dunstable and Tyngsboro, 1 member each. The result is that Lowell representation on the school board sits at 50% rather
than its full 70%.
Such a disparity is significant enough to result in a violation of the one person – one vote rule
In our case for example, while Lowell reportedly fills 74% of the total enrollment, under the state’s funding formula we pay 55% of the required funding. Regardless, however, of whatever reasons initially fueled the current board’s make up, the present composition appears to present a clear constitutional violation and as such should be addressed.