Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Good news from the Fed

WASHINGTON — The Federal Reserve has decided to hold interest rates at a record low and pledged to keep them there for an "extended period" to keep the recovery going and drive down double-digit unemployment.

A huge relief for those of us who have adjustable rate mortgages due to expire Jan 1, 2010. This move will also help home sales and new credit card applications.

The Education Bill.... and what was taken out

Thanks to the Teachers Union, a provision to allow superintendent to fire a teacher at a failing school, regardless of job performance was taken out of the bill. The watered down bill now goes to the House where it has already been labeled a bad bill and will do nothing to help the failing schools. Not since 1993 has the State had any changes to the way education of our children is being done. Keep in mind, that we (Mass) has only a few weeks left to get our act together to qualify for the Fed's 250 million in stimulus money. The Unions will also fight an amendment baring Towns from setting up charter schools without union approval.

While I don't think tax dollars should be taken away from primary schools, only to fund charter schools, I do think there needs to be some way of measuring the performance of the teachers in failing schools. I do believe it's more social economic related in many areas of our state, but to not be held to some standard, like the rest of the working class, doesn't seem fair. It's estimated that there will be 300 and 400 amendments the House will have to contend with on this one bill. All this.. .while they are on vacation. Down to the wire is what we will see, just like the Fed's with Health Care Reform now, a mad dash by the unions and their lobbyists to buy their way out of reasonable legislation that helps the masses.

Tax rates in Framingham, DeLeo blinks, H1 vaccine recall

If anyone was watching the poorly produced Selectman's meeting last night, you saw they approved hiking our taxes to the limit of prop 2 1/2. Homeowner rates will increase by 1.70 for 2010, making our rate increase about 248.00 a year more. Business took the whack harder again this year with an increase of 4.23. Business pays 43% of the total tax levy while commercial property accounts for 24% of the tax base.

Selectman were saying they liked the idea of encouraging resident input into the tax process in hopes of finding ways to cut tax rates, which would encourage commercial growth. More placating and no clear vision on how to trim expenses.

Mr Speaker has agreed to an audit... but the auditor is not an outsider. The 4 reps who have pushed for this audit are still holding up house business and hopefully, they will not blink. We can no longer trust any insider to account for anything, especially how our money is being spent.

For those of you who had concerns over the testing of H1 vaccine, take heart, you were rightfully concerned. We learn today that 700,000 doses are not as effective in strength as once thought. And.. they don't know why. The short of it is now, if your child had been given the recalled vaccine, there's no need to get another shot, according to the CDC.