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Diyonne McGraw should do the right thing and resign

OPINION

BY JENNIFER CABRERA

Ever since Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Kim Barton issued an official statement saying that Diyonne McGraw’s home address is not in the district she ran in, it has been clear that she will be removed at some point from her school board seat, whether voluntarily or involuntarily.

Florida Statutes and Alachua County School Board policies are clear that any member that does not remain in their district is no longer qualified to be in their seat. Nothing else matters. It doesn’t matter that McGraw was elected by voters all over the county; it doesn’t matter that she claims she was told that she lives in District 4; it doesn’t matter that her election created a historic 3-black-woman majority on the board. What matters is that there are rules for school board members, and every vote she takes as a school board member is in violation of the rules. This is a terrible example to set for the children of our county. On top of that, her sworn Candidate’s Oath contains a falsehood, whether she knew it at the time or not–and instead of acknowledging that, McGraw continues to make excuses and blame the situation on others.

Since everyone knows she will not remain in the seat, the only possible reason for her refusal to resign–and for Chair Leanetta McNealy and Member Tina Certain to continue to support her in that–is to push through as much change as possible before she is removed.

Attorney Jeff Childers has put the school board on notice that he will ask the courts to overturn every 3-2 vote in which McGraw is in the majority, so with every meeting, McGraw is now adding to the stack of votes that may need to be unwound. Since contracts are made, funds are expended, people are hired and fired, and other tasks are undertaken based on these votes, McGraw is costing the taxpayers of this county unnecessary money, and instead of working for all the children, as she says she is doing, she is actually wasting money that would otherwise be used to improve our children’s education.

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To make things worse, last night McGraw proposed a bizarre plan for immediately redistricting the school board based on the 2010 census data, and McNealy agreed that it needs to be done as soon as possible, saying, “This is an emergency!” Since the rules of redistricting require that new districts be drawn so that current board members continue to live in their district, this would re-draw District 2 to include McGraw’s house. If you can’t win by the existing rules, just change them, right?

Judge Donna Keim stated yesterday that the case against McGraw is likely to succeed on its merits. McGraw needs to accept that she is on the wrong side of this and resign.

  • After all the recent videos of parents speaking passionately at school board meetings in different states, I was surprised at how timid the sheeple were at yesterday’s meeting. Everyone is afraid to speak up to that Maxine Waters wanna-be who conducts the meetings? The public should tell her to tell McGraw to resign or not hold any more votes for the reasons Jennifer listed. Re-open the topic if she wants to close the topic.

    • When McNealy speaks, sorry, screams her incomprehensible gibberish, it makes it extremely difficult to be heard at the meetings. Even when people call, if you don’t proclaim your fealty to her, she claims she can’t hear you. The only way someone will be heard while she’s the chair is if someone gets to her and puts a muzzle on her…if they can find one large enough.

  • Suggesting a change in districting is an admission of wrong-doing.

  • Not only resign, but Why no talk of criminal charges and fines? She
    Committed a crime.

    • Shouldn’t Alachua County Supervisor of Elections Kim Barton face similar consequences to Diyonne McGraw?

  • This is now a moot point as Governor DeSantis did the right thing, he followed the law and removed her from her seat that she is not eligible to have ! A wrong has been Righted !

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