September 24, 2008

What's next?

Assuming the June 13, 2010 deadline can't be extended, the race is on now to find an alternate site that can win the support of four city councilors and the Planning Commission.
The former Roberts property is obviously one alternative, though I'm not sure there are four votes possible for it.
But there are several other empty tracts on Chippens Hill that could be tapped instead that at least have the advantage of not being across the street from an existing middle school. It's certainly possible one of them might suffice.
One thing's for sure -- the school officials who are scurrying to find alternatives will be making certain that City Planner Alan Weiner and City Engineer Paul Strawderman are an integral part of the fast-paced search that has to be done.
School Superintendent Philip Streifer said he'll ask the West Bristol School Building Committee to get moving fast on this.
The funny thing is that the council once told the committee to forget Scalia, but its members refused to budge, and managed to secure a fourth council vote instead when Craig Minor changed his mind and voted for it.
What nobody realized is that they needed five votes, not four, and they didn't have 'em.
Coming up with four or five votes on this badly divided council for any site is going to require more councilors to follow Minor's lead and compromise. There's not a lot of evidence to support the notion that they will.
And if you accept the argument of preservationists such as Cheryl Barb, maybe that's just as well.

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

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

here we sit again as victims of minor's indecision. He needs to stop being wishy, washy on his decisions and start realizing that his pompous attitude is hurting this city.

Anonymous said...

It is absolutely amazing!!

We read about a new Yankee Stadium, a new Shea Stadium.

These are facilities nowhere near as old as some of our schools.

Yet they are being replaced.
While it is MOSTLY private dollars, there are some public dollars involved. And what has changed to require their replacement?


However, the point is that these two organizations want to remain competitive and are willing to step up to the plate.

Not Bristol.

We are willing to try to better educate our children in old, antiquated buildings. Buildings that have learning limitations, limitations in providing access to all, do not meet accepted standards. YEs, education has changed and we have to keep up with it.

But who cares, kids can't vote.

The leadership, if they can be classified as such, have failed the citizens again.

Why do I have the feeling that there are other agendas in play here?

Who is going to make money if another site is elected? Cynical, yes, but more than likely true.

Wake up people, we need better than we are getting, from Ward, and his cronies.

john reek said...

The only thing that amazes me is the planning commision was brought in at the very beginning the city engineer was brought in ( maybe by mike rimcoski ) and the water department was also brought in, they made exactly the same statements before the scalia fight was really heating up then they all sat back and waited to show everyone in town who really controlled things around here.
major infrastucture updates were always clearly on the table on the scalia site.
the panning commisions feelings were hurt and they chose to lash out at the board of ed instead of thinking about the future.
a real shame.

Anonymous said...

7:30 AM

You may have something there. But, I think your understanding about why the stadums are being replaced is a bit off.

The stadiums are being replaced not because they are no good for baseball but to make someone (the owners) more money by increasing the number of luxury boxes, etc.

Similarly, the school proposal is not about obsolescence but about making money for someone.

Tim Gamache said...

While I have been adamantly opposed to putting one of the new schools on the 17 acre Center mall site up to now,I am having a change of mind.The Roberts property would serve only to move these students further away from their neighborhood.Putting the school downtown will keep them close to home.
Trying to keep the 73.9 reimbursement rate from the state in place is of extreme importance as well.The city already owns the 17 acres,so emminant domain is not an issue.The environmentals and due diligence has also already been done.All this,it seems to me,would serve to really expidite the process and allow the city to move forward on building the schools with the desired reimbursement rate in place.
Dr. Streifer made an important observation last evening.If we miss the July 2010 deadline, the reimbursement rate will definitely decrease while construction and energy costs will most certainly increase.It's your basic "pay me now or pay me(much more)later."
I would hope after last nights' meeting,the BOE and the city planning commission and city planner will work more closely to gether on these projects.

Anonymous said...

Stortz is to blame for this

Anonymous said...

10:00

The sports owners are doing what they have to do to keep up with the times, be it boxes or wharever.

Bristol isn't doing that, and it isn't about contractors making more money.

Bristo has the attitude "good enough is good enough", and that is why we are going downhill (not forWARD)!!!

Anonymous said...

I thought that Minor was adamant about Roberts not being an option because of open space laws and needing to replace that open space with an equivalent area?

Anonymous said...

Comparing new stadiums to new schools is apples to oranges. Team owners are choosing to spend their own money (mostly), while taxpayers' money is spent for new schools without their consent. Team owners build new stadiums in order to make more money. When will taxpayers make money on new schools? That's just silly. But will taxpayers even see a return in the form of better education??? Bricks don't teach. It's up to the teachers and administrators and BOE. Get going, our kids are falling behind.

Anonymous said...

10:54,

I beg to differ. The owners are doing it only for financial gain. Furthermore, if you look past the smoke and mirrors you will discover that these stadiums are being heavily subsidized with taxpayer money (infrastructure, land, etc.). But the name of the game is not a quality product but rather a maximization of earnings. And that is the problem here. The name of the game is not a quality product (education) but something else. To steal a phrase from someone else, that other other things is a monument to the big egos of little men.

Anonymous said...

Tim,

Do some homework: I do beleive that the city has received many dollars from the state for development of the Mall site, including the surrounding area.

Might they not have to pay that back??

Again, the free lunch adage comes into play.

Anonymous said...

Moving BackWARD!

Anonymous said...

10:28

I agree!!

If he stayed on as mayor we would be moving ahead!!

Anonymous said...

The Planning Board of Bristol did not recommend the Scalia site. No one supported the measure.

Why did Minor, a professional city planner, choose to support the Scalia site to begin with?
Why the big disconnect?

Anonymous said...

4:13P.M. - He was TOLD to.

Anonymous said...

...and we all know Minor does as he is told (because he needs to be told what to do).

Anonymous said...

Who told Minor what to do? Obrien?

Anonymous said...

Tim

Who cares what you think. GET A JOB. You are no politician.

Anonymous said...

The Planning Board, AKA Alan Weiner, shot down Scalia just to flex their muscle.

They gave NO valid reason.

Anonymous said...

The Planning Board, AKA Alan Weiner, shot down Scalia just to flex their muscle.

Wow, that's about the stupidest statement I've seen on here in quite some time! Were you even at the Planning Board meeting?

Anonymous said...

Stortz along with the school board did this in secret as his way of micro-managing everything.
Guess he took a page out of his buddy Kallenbach's playbook and said the hell with FOI.

Anonymous said...

11:19

And what do you base your comments on.

Did you attend the BOE meetings, the Building Committee meetings?

Please provide some examples, or go away.

Anonymous said...

Kallenbach said he wasn't happy with FOI, he didn't say to hell with it. All public servants think that it's too extreme in many cases, though they all won't admit it in public.

Anonymous said...

Artie has been in office for almost a year. I would appreciate it if he would show at least 10 things he accomplished in that period of time. I am sure he can take time to do this.