Kudos to the village of Riverside for lighting the historic water tower with a Halloween light show. I’ve gone out of my way evenings just to see the display; it makes me feel good and brings a smile every time. It’s a cheap feel-good treat in these dismal times. I hope the Village has gotten images for other holidays, the Fourth of July, Easter, Christmas, etc. I look forward to seeing more of this.

The RBHS board seems to have the budget under control, but could have put administrators’ raises and their portion of retirement benefits to better use rather than cutting programs. The fiscally irresponsible raises and benefits total more than $711,000, which is just short of the $900,000 operating deficit.

I don’t know how many taxpayers are fed up with the RB. Administration crying about how the failed referendum is the reason for all the cuts, while they can find money to fund raises and benefits for staff.

And if anyone does not think the elimination of The Day of Service is a slap in the face of all taxpayers just because of a failed referendum, I’ve got a bridge for sale. I’m glad to see board President Matt Sinde at least say he’s focusing on the budget.

Districts 208 and 96 had better think hard and long about referendums and/or back door financing with The Landmark’s revelation about home values being down while tax bills climb and the homeowner’s exemption is phased out. As usual, the people who can least afford a tax increase are the ones who pay the most.

 I think the commercial properties should see a higher rate of increase to help ease the burden on homeowners since we are the customers who shop these stores. After all, if they don’t want to support our schools, why should we patronize and support them? Additionally, pressure should be put on our county officials to balance these inequities and find better school funding measures to relieve the burden on homeowners who can ill afford these massive tax increases in this economy. Perhaps we should initiate an Occupy Riverside, North Riverside or even Cook County Board.

Frank C. Vlazny