January 30, 2008

Rimcoski says no to Scalia site

Calling himself "very disappointed" in the school siting panel that again recommended putting a new school in a Scalia sand pit off Barlow Street, city Councilor Mike Rimcoski said Wednesday he'll do what he can to kill the idea.
"It's a mistake" to think of putting a new 900-student school on the site, the councilor said.
Rimcoski said the West Bristol School Building Committee offered "nothing new at all" to justify the site that city councilors turned down just a few months ago.
He said he's concerned that every student at the new school would need to be bused.
"They can walk from Terryville easier than Bristol," Rimcoski said.
Rimcoski said that the sand pit is "the wrong place" for a new kindergarten to eighth grade school and that other options should be explored.
The second-term Republican also said that he believes the council won't back the proposal and might not even take it up, depending on how city attorneys interpret the rules of order governing the decision.
The next City Council meeting is slated for 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 12.

Copyright 2008. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at scollins@bristolpress.com


Anonymous said...

"They can walk from Terryville easier than Bristol," Rimcoski said.

That's an idea ..... Terryville has it's new High School ... Now it could have a new K/8 too . ;-)

Anonymous said...

Go Mike Go!

Anonymous said...

Mike has had a hate for Scalia since his days on zoning.

It is still there, and it shows.

Ask Mike how many kids will be bussed if they tear down all those properties, and the kids live elsewhere.

The percentage is high right now: and, sooner or later all kids will be busssed.

Mike is a master of the sound bite, but there isn't much thought some of the time.

The West End delays the project at least two years, even if the state is willing to get involved with emminent domain.

Anonymous said...

Hey - to the guy that does the ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ lines - KNOCK IT OFF! Really annoying and a waste of space.

Anonymous said...

The good Councilman has not heard any good reason to support Scalia. The fact of the matter is that Mr. Rimcoski is not listening.

He never supported Scalia and never will. His public reasons for non-support are a smokescreen. Most students are bussed in this city. It's a fact of life. Get over it or change the rules of students eligible to receive bus transportation.

Councilman Rimcoski does not like the Scalia site because he thinks that Frank Scalia "stole" sand from Rockwell Park years ago. Mike, Frank is dead. Let it go. Do what is right for children, do what is right so that another day does not pass that keeps children in antiquated schools like Bingham and CTO more than need be.

It's very difficult to hear a Councilman state that no new arguments were given when the choice for Scalia was made last Monday when no councilman attended the site selection meeting except for Committee member, Councilman Cockayne.

Councilman Rimcoski, you will vote as you see fit, but all students ask that you vote in their best interests, not your 20-year old vendetta.

Anonymous said...

Is there a state guideline on kids crossing major highways to get to school?

Would that apply here?

Also, are there water problems in the area?

Anonymous said...

Busing the students to the that site is a bad idea. Kudos for Rimcoski for having the guts to oppose it.

Too bad we had to use the Bugryn property for that worthless industrial park wet-dream.

Anonymous said...

Mike Rimcoski is a man of integrity and conviction. He doesn't support the scalia site and he has every reason to vote the way he wants too.

He has been open and honest about this selection from day one. Al least we knew where he stood. Can't say that much for the Democrats.

Anonymous said...

Grow up people! Let's solve this like adults: Rock,Paper,Scissors.

john reek said...

Rimcoski is again trying to kill another great decision by the west end site committee. I said at that meeting some on the council have already made up thier minds and here he is.
How long before other members of certain bristol organizations jump on the bandwagon and do not consider this excellant decision?
using the children of bristol in his archaic vendetta against all things scalia hopefully will count against him in future elections.
I am really looking forward to the next council meeting so he can justify his shortsighted decision.

Anonymous said...


You have my vote Mike!

Nick said...

Well at least someone has a clue on the Council. I think Mike is making a VERY wise decision. Scalia is the absolute worst choice for a new school !!

Anonymous said...

And the cost of the additional infrastructure to "connect" this school site to the community?
Sidewalks, water, sewer, roadways?

How does the school board intend for children to attend all those additonal afer school programs which they intend to run at this new school? Once the school bus leaves the building after the school day, that will be it, for far too many.
Those in the low income community whose parents don't drive or those whose parents have work schedules that are not in sync with the school schedule, will not be well served.
Apparently those that would benefit most from those supportive "extras" will be left out.
And, if we run additional bus services to serve this segment of our community....it will be an "extra" cost that the taxpayer will have to pay to serve those groups.
This dosesn't seem very cost efficient.
There must be a better way.

It appears that the selection commitee has opted to foster the maximum housing option rather than maximum education option.

Anonymous said...

Can anyone tell us just how many walk to O'Connell now, and how many of these would be out of the equation if their houses were torn down?

What is the state policy on kids crossing major roads?

What is the cost factor with the potential delay brought about by property acqusition?

Property acqusition would be about 6 million more than the projected price for Scalia.

How many of those that are making comments have taken the time to attend a meeting or even write and put forth their views and concerns?

Yep, I can just see Rell, HAmzy, Colapietro, Nicastro taking a stand on Eminent Domain prior to an election.

And the beat goes on.

Anonymous said...


a stand on Eminent Domain prior to an election.


Bristol doesn't use eminent domain anymore ..... They have a contractor on retainer that just tears the places down and the city sends the homeowner the bill ..... PLEASE pay attention to what is happening in Bristol .... you might be next .

Anonymous said...


Surely you jest.
Who would that contractor be?

And Art ward WOULD NEVER allow that, would he?

Anonymous said...

"He has been open and honest about this selection from day one. Al least we knew where he stood. Can't say that much for the Democrats."

You should know where every Democrat on the Council stands, friend, because they each voted on Scalia last time, yes or no. The only one who wasn't there last year is Cliff Block. You want to know where he stands? Ask him.

Steve Collins said...

As a reminder, former Mayor Bill Stortz was the only vote in opposition to Rimcoski's motion in October to send the site suggestion back to the committee. Every single city councilor agreed to ship it back to the site selection panel.

Anonymous said...

We have a site selection committee, made up of Bristol citizens, selected and approved per our ordinances, and even with the membership changes made during the process, they twice chose the Scalia site.
The Council, many who did not attend ANY of the site committee meetings, said NO.

So far I have heard no realistic rationale that wasn't considered and addressed by the site committee.

They seem to be properly concerned with the educational impact, which is the basis for the school facility issue and the reason that the state maybe willing to put up their share of the cost.

I would imagine that Hartford doesn't take a great view of Bristol: we get dollars for the MAll and then back off. We say we need help with the schools and then can't agree as to where.

I see this dragging out and dying under this administration just as the last effort did under Nicastro.
Now Nicastro cries "wolf" about an environmental study and then crawls into a hole, just like Rimcoski.

Frank, is there or is there not an environmental problem?

And Mike, what is your solution, even if it costs more (you are against more taxes, remember?)

Meantim, Bristol fall further and further behind.

Bob Merrick said...

Mike Rimcoski is right. This is a bad site. It is too far removed from the neighborhood where many of the students live and currently walk to school.

If the BOE would be willing to reconsider options for a K-5, 6-8 structure a new K-5 could be built in the West End on a smaller site such as the IGA property.

Many school districts are finding what many educators already knew, that smaller schools have many positive educational advantages over larger ones.

The following is an excerpt from an article "Are Smaller Schools Better Schools," by Diane Weaver Dunne which cites studies that shows the positive correlation between smaller school size and higher acheivement of economically disadvantaged students. I have included the link below.

"Educators have long known that poverty hurts student achievement. Researchers Craig Howley, of Ohio University and the Appalachia Educational Laboratory, and Robert Bickel, of Marshall University, set out to find out whether smaller schools could reduce the negative effects of poverty on student achievement. In four separate studies of seven states, they repeatedly found that poor kids do better if they attend a small school. In fact, in the most recent four-state study, the correlation between poverty and low achievement was ten times stronger in larger schools than in smaller ones in all four states. Howley and Bickel found that the benefit of smaller schools was particularly important in the middle grades, when children are most at risk of dropping out."


Anonymous said...

To reduce eyestrain and headache... when you see Bob Merrick's name, just scroll.

Anonymous said...

FYI... Rimcoski isn't right on everything, but Scalia DID steal sand from Rockwell Park.

Anonymous said...

There are endless educational studies over the past 25 years that indicate smaller sized schools are better for kids and better for learning- higher academic achievment levels, less dropout rates, less violence.
Thanks B. Merrick for listing just one of them!
Frankly, there is no one in education research clamoring to build large sized schools since the 1950's. I am still looking in the ERIC database for just one study in the past 25 years that shows the superiority of large sized schools.
(not school districts but schools)

Unfortunately, an honest assessment and implementation of the "education research" isn't the basis for which the size and placement of these new schools is predicated.

The real question is this:
Are these new school designed, constructed, placed to simply house or baby sit these kids while mommy and daddy are away at work?

Or are these new schools designed, constructed, and placed to optimize the most positive educational outcome for the children?

Do adminstrative needs and political agenda's trump educational achievement?

Anonymous said...

Just when did Scalia steal land from Rockwell Park?

Anonymous said...

First off, I agree that Mr. Rimcoski hates Scalia and that's his sole reason for not wanting the pits. He doesn't feel we should reward them when the have disregarded this city's zoning regs. I understand his anger and frustration, but I believe the pits are the place to put the school.

Secondly, he is a man of integrity, but so are some of the other councilors who may be for the site. Integrity in this case goes both ways. There are arguments for and against the pits. The busing, to me, is just a smoke screen for Mr. R. Whatever site is chosen the kids will be bused so I believe that's not the real reason. It is, as I believe, what I stated above.

Park Street would be great, but it would take FOREVER to buy all those properties and the kids would have to cross the street to get to the fields. That to me is very unsafe and I KNOW Mr. R wouldn't want that.

As far as Park's IGA, there is clearly a problem with dumping there. I would hate to open up that can of worms. We could be looking at remediation that could take a very long time to remedy.

Mike, just swallow your pride and go with Scalia's.

Anonymous said...

Has Rimcoski asked for an environmental study of all those properies?

Who knows what was there, and if any contamination exists?

Anonymous said...

Rimshot has been quiet. Is that because of the writers strike?