1435 Navahoe Drive Pittsburgh, PA 15228 March 31, 2010 Dr. Timothy J. Steinhauer Superintendent Mt.

Lebanon School District 7 Horsman Drive Pittsburgh, PA 15228 Re: The Difference Dr. Steinhauer: For years generations our Community has proudly supported the education of our youth. What may be different today is that folks are feeling the limit of their own means. My sense is that many residents do not believe the District feels the same of itself. Some of the frustration stems from the realization that real estate taxes are outpacing earned incomes. Some of it is the times. Residents have seen holes in their net worth big enough to drive through several years of secure retirement or college education. The only meaningful limit the Board has seemed to recognize is a budget limit that would require the District to ask voters for the OK to proceed. My observation is that projects get done in both good and bad times because elected and appointed officials are no different than anyone else, they want to make a difference in other peoples’ lives. What is different is that they make the difference with other peoples’ money. Contemporaneous with the District tantalizing the Community with statements like “The cost of the project is still fluid … and does not take into account that bids on recent school construction projects came in at 17% to 25% below their original estimates”, the Master Design Team was looking for potential project deletions to manage the budget, if necessary. A very legitimate exercise, however the palpable possibility that bids could come in high was absent from the District’s FAQs! The very same day you signed the Zoning Variance application, the Master Design Team, including yourself, “agreed that one of the auxiliary gyms was reasonable” as a possible deletion. It is worth noting, deleting the second auxiliary gym would not only save a couple million dollars, but also reduce the zoning modification required. This appears to possibly be at odds with assertions1 contained in the zoning application. Let me be clear, myself and many (if not most) residents believe we need to do a project. But -If there are things we don’t need because we can’t afford them, we don’t need them if we can. There is really no difference, especially if it is other peoples’ money. Respectfully,

William R. Matthews III cc: MTLSD School Board MTL


“The variance, if authorized, will represent the minimum variance that will afford relief and will represent the least modification possible.”

Dr. Timothy J. Steinhauer Superintendent Mt. Lebanon School District March 31, 2010