Letter: Carlton school board should consider all stakeholders, solutions
To the Editor:
I have a number of concerns about the Carlton School District.
First is the issue of Ingensa. Who else was asked for a proposal? We have several good architects and engineers in our local area who are more than capable to provide any service we would need. I really question the decision to award a contract to Ingensa with a very excessive fee based on a single estimate that they themselves produced. I don't believe this comes close to passing the "smell test." It looks like Duluth and Johnson Controls all over again.
Secondly, as I look at the proposal, I am unable to discern what it is we are going to do. I have been told that we are going to "dehumidify" the building, which means "air condition" in my book, for $2 million dollars. Why? For a building that is not used in the summer or used very little. It looks like we are going forward in a piecemeal fashion without a well thought-out comprehensive plan.
Next, we are at a time when educational methods and requirements are changing, costs are going up and enrollments are declining. As I have said at different times, we need to look at the various options we have available, set aside our personal biases, and look for solutions that consider all the stakeholders. I have not seen any evidence of that taking place. To me, it appears the Administration and Board have made up their minds what will happen. I would like to see a time when the Board and the citizens dialog to find the best answer for everyone.
Finally, I am concerned about the relationship between the Board and the Administration. It appears to me that the Board represents the Administration instead of the citizens of the district. Unfortunately, this seems to the the way too many boards operate these days.