Promises Made – Promises Broken sends unmistakable message via billboard

Promises Made – Promises Broken, a coalition of East and West Coachella Valley students and taxpayers fed up with the failures of COD leadership, have lobbed one of the first advertising salvos as the trustee race gears up for the Nov. 8 election.

The group has had a billboard erected on the highly visible Dinah Shore Drive. There is no mistaking the blunt message as would-be students hang outside the fence of a vacant lot.

“Our intent is to raise flares about an issue that most people wouldn’t normally follow,” Bruce Hoban, a spokesperson for the group, told Uken Report. “The message is that a vast majority of the bond money has been spent in Palm Desert and to the east. What happened to the campus in Palm Springs? We have 27 acres of vacant land.”

Desert Superintendent/President Martha Garcia first said a feasibility study needed to be done, Hoban said. She subsequently found the feasibility study that had already been done. Then, according to Hoban, she said it needed to be updated and that would be done by end of June. No such study surfaced.

“We’re looking forward to the feasibility study in July,” Hoban said.

Look at what (Garcia) did with the Roadrunner Motors program, Hoban said. She announced in an October news release that alternative locations were being sought for the program. Members of Promises Made – Promises Broken and city leaders were outraged and held a rally in April to protest the unilateral decision without any advanced consultation with — or notice to — local officials. Attendees pressured COD to build the automotive education facility within Cathedral City city limits.

Later that month, the Board of Trustees unanimously voted to proceed with construction at the location it already owns in Cathedral City. The project is estimated to cost about $35 million.

“We won that one,” Hoban said.

Meanwhile, COD held a groundbreaking ceremony for its Indio campus expansion at the site near Oasis Street and Bliss Avenue in March. The college is also building a child development center for more than $20 million nearby.

To date, Joel Kinnamon, President Emeritus of College of the Desert, and Brian Nestande have announced their intentions to seek the Desert Community College District (DCCD) Board of Trustees for Area 4, which includes eastern Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, Indian Wells and a large portion of La Quinta.  DCCD is the publicly-elected governing body for College of the Desert.

Wilson has not returned Uken Report’s requests for comment.




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