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posted: 1/24/2012 5:00 AM

Why so long to cancel lease, COD?

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A two-million-dollar thanks to reporter Christopher Placek for his eye-opening (or should I say wallet-opening) Jan. 20 news item announcing College of DuPage's ending of a 10-year lease of Indian Prairie Unit District 204 space.

Being a taxpayer and close-by neighbor to "University of DuPage," I am often flabbergasted at the amount of money the college goes through for development and lawsuits. However, Placek's report once again had my mouth hanging open in astonishment.

If my math is correct, COD has spent about $2,6 million since 2006 to help construct and furnish, and then lease a "facility" from Indian Prairie to teach Naperville-area high school seniors advance-level courses. That cost includes the published $743,460 worth of construction and furnishings, $368,328 annual lease, and now the $50,000 early lease termination fee to get out of a bad decision.

COD trustees had a long-past-due lucid moment in voting to end this madness. Had they a sneak peek at Jan. 20 Daily Herald's "Local Focus" page layout? Placek's article was next to another featuring Wheaton Mayor Michael Gresk describing economic growth -- "It's not rocket science." I couldn't help but wonder if the mayor was addressing those holding COD's purse strings.

I also can't imagine why it took COD officials five years and more than $2.5 million to figure out it would be cheaper for we taxpayers to foot the bill for simply renting out pre-existing Indian Prairie classrooms to attain the same result.

Those Naperville students got a million-dollar college education courtesy of DuPage County residents. I hope they use it wisely.

Lisa Ann Wallace

Unincorporated Milton Township

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