Letters to the Editor for the week of Dec. 18 to 22

December 22, 2006 12:00 am

Repair the school

To the editor:

If the purpose of Chris Collins' article Dec. 8 regarding the Baker Middle School was to gain support for a new middle school, she achieved a well-aimed shot to the foot.

The list of grievances laid out by principal Mindi Vaughan established she is either too busy or not interested enough to call a general contractor to make the minor repairs needed. Instead, build a new school!

Backed up sewage is a city public works problem resulting from an overloaded or clogged storm system out in the street.

Slippery floors during inclement weather may require some action by the custodian — heaven forbid!

A heating contractor can explain and remedy the red dust problem. Rust in the ductwork is likely the culprit. I doubt that chemical analysis is necessary, but drying up the basement is.

District 5J has a budget item for building maintenance — do you suppose anyone at 5J has any idea or any interest in just how the money is spent or whether it is sufficient in total and sufficiently managed? The time and money used to promote the school bond measure would certainly be enough to hire a plumber.

Baker City will never get a new middle school until Don Ulrey, Mindi Vaughan, the school board and the architects they hired are all replaced and the process starts anew. Let the objective be the education of the children, not buying real estate and building a monument dedicated to Don Ulrey.

The right recipe has yet to be used to produce the needed results. And no amount of additional vote counts will get the towns folk, the majority of whom are senior citizens, to vote "Yes" on the school bond. A bond measure based upon an accurate and unprejudiced appraisal by construction and education professionals with no vested interest is mandatory. Such an appraisal is not possible if made by Ulrey and his boosters.

I seek no opportunity to participate in the ongoing BMS deliberations, but I am interested and hope that the final decisions are based upon honest and unbiased judgment. To date, that is not the case.

William Beam

Baker City