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Letter: Consider the Cost Overruns

To the Editor:

Voters of Hartford should indeed consider whether to vote for bond issues that are the result of cost overruns in the various town construction projects (editorial, Jan. 8). However, blame needs to be clearly placed on Town Manager Hunter Riesberg and architect David Lauren, the former appointment made without putting these projects out for bid. I can’t help wondering whether Lauren lowballed his construction projects and whether Riesberg knew that before presenting the project costs to the Selectboard. The West Hartford Library and sports facilities cost overruns have damaged Hartford’s credit rating and the confidence of the voters. The admirable exception is the Hartford Municipal Building, for which an informed citizens committee was selected, sought bids in public and chose the best firm to do the job. The Selectboard should view with suspicion any new projects Riesberg brings forward in the time he remains in his position … hopefully not too long.

Jon Appleton

White River Junction

Related

Editorial: Of Human Bonding

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Hartford residents have historically seen their civic duty and done it when it comes to major capital improvements, as they did last March in approving bond issues totaling nearly $14 million for various projects. Even such public-spirited taxpayers could be taken aback to learn, however, that they may well be asked by town and school officials to give their blessing …