Thursday, October 11, 2018

Fuller and what is not reimbursed from the MSBA

Last night's finance sub committee meeting is up and ready for viewing. It may be not of interest to some but it should be of interest to every tax payer in Town. The entire presentation is worth viewing, but the nitty gritty starts at 45.56. You will see how much of the project is not being reimbursed by the MSBA. The big tickets items for me are the auditorium at 5.8 million and the contingency costs of 3 million. It would take 131 million to repair Fuller as it stands now and in December there will be a special vote on this project. No numbers of costs will be on the ballot, it's just to ask the voters if the City can exempt the project from the tax levy. The appropriation will be 98 million for 20 years and add to your taxes about 101 dollars a year. There is no question in my mind that Fuller has to be replaced with a new school. Rehabbing that old building makes no sense at all. But the auditorium at 5.8 million should be scrutinized. Why not incorporate the gym and auditorium? Why such a high costs for the contingency? We are getting 62% out of a max of 80% in eligible costs. So our part of this is 58.8 million with us using 8 million of our stabilization fund. I also wonder why some of the open space would not be gardens and why we can't get solar panels on the roof. Rossi and Grove just seem confused.
So the bottom line is, for taxpayers next year is that school will raise our taxes by 100 bucks, water and sewer rates will add another few bucks and the new assessment will add another 300 bucks or so. Without cutting operational expenses we will continue to tax the hell out of many in Town who can't afford it.

http://207.172.210.8:5002/CablecastPublicSite/show/1573?channel=1


29 Comments:

At October 11, 2018 at 7:40 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

so how do we prevent this? If we vote for the debt exclusion what happens

 
At October 11, 2018 at 8:17 PM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

voting it down only makes matters worse for the future. If voted down the MSBA may not fund the project in the future and or may not give the same percentage of reimbursement for the project. As I see it, we have no choice. As the commercial once said, "pay me now or pay me later". Fuller is a relic that has seen better days and needs to be replaced. The Town has spent a fair amount of money keeping the place habitable for students and teachers.
Your taxes will rise 101 dollars to pay for the school, for 20 years.

 
At October 11, 2018 at 10:31 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

20 years from now I will be dead so this is a forever tax for those on fixed incomes like me. $100 may not seem like much to you but it can make or break someone like me

 
At October 12, 2018 at 12:27 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please explain why a simple box building would not be cheaper? The center atrium reminds of a museum and the price of the auditorium is insane.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 8:41 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree about a simple box building. We do not need to win an architectural design award, we need to win a best use of space award. Lets get a more efficient and economical design and then talk about supporting it

 
At October 12, 2018 at 9:20 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

what is wrong with a school that has classrooms, a gym, a cafeteria, an auditorium, and a library. Why do we need an atrium which is just wasted space

 
At October 12, 2018 at 9:21 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The current design seems like a typical school committee response, 'its all about the kids so the cost is irrelevant'. Why do we need to pay over 5 million dollars just for an auditorium that is out of scale that it won't get reimbursed by the state? Build a plain box building and focus on English, math, and the sciences.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 9:21 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I disagree with your statement Jim that voting it down makes matters worse. I say voting it down tells these people who are pushing this that we don't like the design or the cost and they need to go back to the drawing board.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 10:05 AM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

Notice.. no where have you rea anything about the meeting. No Source, no Patch, no MWDN. It's so frustrating to not see any media coverage of this major project. I will write to Adam Freudberg with me concerns and post something on the FB pages and see what the comments are. Is it to late to change anything about the overall costs? I will ask Adam.
This is the list of SC member's.
rfinlay@framingham.k12.ma.us ;
bhugo@framingham.k12.ma.us ;
afreudberg@framingham.k12.ma.us ;
nalexander@framingham.k12.ma.us ;
gepstein@framingham.k12.ma.us ;
tmaskell@framingham.k12.ma.us ;
gpascual@framingham.k12.ma.us ;
tbryant@framingham.k12.ma.us ;

 
At October 12, 2018 at 11:06 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is the LWV going to do anything on this to inform us before we have to vote?

 
At October 12, 2018 at 11:37 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right you are Jimbo about the lack of media coverage. They have to keep things quiet before the seniors head south for the winter wouldn't want them to fill out absentee balots voting against this high priced project. Other posters right, a simple building design seems like a cheaper answer. Framingham is not newton or weston.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 1:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

When will this be on the ballot for us to vote? Is it coming up on the November 6th date?

 
At October 12, 2018 at 1:44 PM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

It will be in December believe it or not. What a bad time of the year to hold this vote. Not only will there be ridiculously low voter turn out, but as I and many others have observed over the decades, senior citizens are the ones who always vote, no matter what and if they collectively feel the price tag is to much,or there are to many un-needed parts of the proposal, they may vote it down.
I don't think there will be ballots ready for the December vote before the snow birds head south.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 1:59 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

So the vote on this project which we have been talking about for more than a year now will be held in December when the people most likely to vote against it are not going to be here. Sound fair to anyone? Sure doesn't to me

 
At October 12, 2018 at 2:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

need to make sure the snowbirds can get absentee ballots from where ever they are and send them in. Jim can you post how to go about doing that?

 
At October 12, 2018 at 2:42 PM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

it's December 11th.

I'll check with Lisa on the timing of the ballot release.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 2:47 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone thinking that it is just coincidental that the SC planned for the vote to happen at the end of the year is living in dream land.

Same reason why they didn't want any pot vote on the ballot. They know seniors are likely to come out and vote on the limiting of pot issue.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 3:02 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whole argument about building designed based on STEM seems like bullshit. Those who built jets, put man in space and on the moon, developed new drugs, and developed the internet likely went to a basic middle school building without the touchy feely teaching model.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 3:25 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

it does seem a bit of a stretch to me when I look at the design for the school they should at least offer us the options of a less fancy building and let the voter decide which they like better since we are the ones footing the bill but the school building committee just sees their legacy being this building and so they want it to be fancy just look at McAuliffe Library beautiful building and won awards for its design but does anyone else see all the wasted space there that I see?

 
At October 12, 2018 at 3:30 PM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

Here's what Lisa said about the ballots:
If the language is approved at the October 16th City Council meeting and I get the approval to order the ballots, the printer will be contacted. They are aware and are on stand-by. I will provide them with the language and they will send me the proof before printing. From there it may take about 1-1 ½ weeks to get the absentee ballots. So, I will have early voting ballots, absentee ballots for Nov. 6th, official ballots for Nov. 6th and absentee ballots and official ballots for Dec. 11th – hopefully by the end of October.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 3:38 PM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

good point about their legacy.. and the library. The atrium is over the top for me.
I went to a brand new middle school in Newtown and it combined a gym and stage for theater productions. I was Jim the black kid in Tom Sawyer. Couldn't get away with paining my face black with burnt cork these days.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 3:50 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

you at a black kid? I would have loved to see that! I suppose with your usual tan you were the closest they had to someone with dark skin.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 4:02 PM , Blogger Jim Pillsbury said...

back then we were not allowed in the house... if it were a sunny day. I always was doing something outside as a kid and worked on a dairy farm as a young teenager.

 
At October 12, 2018 at 4:56 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

makes sense now you would be in trouble for having a white kid play a black kid would not be politically correct unless of course you were asking our president for his opinion

 
At October 12, 2018 at 5:12 PM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

Funny stuff and true.
His opinion on everything is irrelevant to me.

 
At October 16, 2018 at 3:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was just reading your post on the problems with construction at Loring Arena and it made me think what can we learn from that process to help us make sure we don't have these issues with the building of the Fuller. Can we mandate inspections on very specific points? How much control do we have on them moving forward on something without the proper inspections being done. Seems like the figure if the do something wrong, the will get away with it if they can move past it before it gets inspected because the city will not want a delay or increased expenses associated with doing something over.

 
At October 17, 2018 at 3:53 PM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

I'm no expert in this matter, but I do believe the general contractors will be mandated to have inspectors there all the time. Since the state is kicking in 40 million or so of tax dollars and as history has shown us, the lack of oversight in these public projects has led to severe cost over runs. Something already included in their cost estimates. It's up to the City to make sure it dosen't get out of hand from the get go.

 
At October 18, 2018 at 11:25 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Get ready Jimbo, "Yes for Fuller!" is revving up its engines! "It's for the children, we HAVE to do it. They HAVE to have the high end atrium & auditorium." Maybe the council, if they are truly watching over our money, should hire its own consultant to review what is being proposed. Why not have professionals, who don't have a vested interest, review it?

 
At October 18, 2018 at 3:08 PM , Blogger jim Pillsbury said...

I don't see any of the council member's asking any questions. It's real easy to spend other peoples money when you have control over it. I'm not surprised over the "yes for fuller" group. Many of these same people just look to be a part of the popular side. Notice not one person on FB or any other platform even discuses the costs of the project. The 3 mill in cost overruns, the asbestos abatement, etc etc. They can make signs and march down main street but it will be the senior vote on Dec 11th that will determine the outcome. Most agree Fuller has to be replaced.. as I do. It's all about the cost that we will pay over the next 20 years. And what about next year when they ask us to replace the Memorial Building or another school or firehouse or save the farm?

 

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