I was confused by the congratulatory tone of your front page report “State showers RBHS with cash” (News, Aug. 28.) It seemed to congratulate the former school leaders for their foresight in 2002 for seeking to finance school repairs with the $8.9 million grant which was finally just awarded.

When the money didn’t initially materialize the same leaders ultimately persuaded the taxpayers to instead spend $91 million (including interest) to renovate the whole school, a project so comprehensive that it wasn’t completed until June of 2010, just three years ago, and so expensive that it will take another 17 years to pay it off.

And it happened so recently that we’re still wrestling with a warranty claim for the ventilation system for the new swimming pool (“RBHS working with vendors to fix pool ventilation,” same issue, page 7).

The story goes on to report that we’re now conducting a life safety review “of needed improvements and have and have identified roofs, the bleachers and locker room at the football stadium, the bleachers in the main gym, and the tennis courts as areas that need improvements, repair or possible replacement,” and our new superintendent is quoted as saying, “We know that we’re going to have a few million [dollars] worth of work that needs to be done.”

I’m confused because, given this revelation, I can’t understand why anyone involved in this money-pit story deserves congratulations for anything.

Terence M. Heuel
Riverside