Ashburnham officials offer inside look at aging school - Sentinel & Enterprise

As a key vote nears, officials opened the school's doors to the public Thursday. Full Story
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The Eggman

Boston, MA

#1 Dec 10, 2010
I'm not an Ashburnham resident, but isn't this bump in property taxes when coupled with the annual rise in tax rates taking over $10,000 out of every taxpayers pocket? This alone makes Ashburnham a VERY expensive place to live.
Amy

Fitchburg, MA

#2 Dec 10, 2010
people are leaving Ashburnham because of taxes.
Third higest foreclosures in the state.
Sue

Springfield, MA

#3 Dec 10, 2010
Right... it is way to expensive to live here.. and foreclosures are way to high as well... we need relief, not more taxes. My husband has been out of work for two years and recently his unemployment benefits expired. We have no where to turn for help. And the town we have lived in for 25 years just wants more money... raise taxes, increase the property values ... or taxes will be going up $500.00 per year!!!!!!!!

IT IS JUST TOO MUCH!!!!!
JAYE BIRD

East Hartford, CT

#4 Dec 10, 2010
Instead of building a whole new school, why can't they just fix this building up and put an addition on it as well for extra space? In this time of economic crisis, it would be cheaper to fix up what we already have, and add on, than to build an entirely new building!

And I say only tax the people who ACTUALLY have children going to school and don't tax the people who don't have children. If someone doesn't have children, why should they be paying taxes for someone's else's child to go to school? Doesn't seem fair to me.
The Wizard

Fitchburg, MA

#5 Dec 10, 2010
You people are too much. You were too lazy to show up at town meeting to vote this thing down, and you'll probably be too busy to show up on the 16th to vote no. If I may paraphrase,

They came first for the elderly,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't elderly.

Then they came for the poor, and I didn't speak up because I was't poor.

Then they came for the unemployed,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't unemployed.

Then they came for me
and by that time no one was left to speak up.

Your vote can make a difference on Dec. 16th, because, they will NEVER stop coming for you.
ANGRY

Fitchburg, MA

#6 Dec 10, 2010
You better believe ill be there to vote this DOWN!
jigga what

Shirley, MA

#7 Dec 10, 2010
unfortunately with all the back woods, redneck and ingorant thinking I see taking place on this board, you folks in that town look like you're pretty screwed either way.

There will always be a reason to be against projects being completed, I just wonder what those excuses were back in the late 80's and early 90's when the economy was steaming right along doing well. Nobody took the time to make any progress during that time period and now everyone's complaining.

Quite the conundrum, glad I'm trying to make sure my family and I will be self sufficient and not relying on fixed incomes where you can obviously project out years ahead and determine whether or not you should even still be a homeowner or not. THere's nothing wrong with being a renter. We all have agreed to live within a social agreement that we don't divide what we use for services vs. what we don't use. If that were the case, there' wouldn't be any police or fire, or ambulance, becuase they serve such a small percentage of the population. To suggest that you don't have to pay for the town to operate services such as these because you don't use it is a little rediculous and proves the inability to make informed decsions.
Mike from Leominster

Fitchburg, MA

#8 Dec 10, 2010
"Walking through the kitchen, the appliances are mostly original equipment from when the school was built in 1967."

Shouldn't a school have a longer shelf life than 30 years? Why didn't anyone know how to build anything in the 1960s?
Mike from Leominster

Fitchburg, MA

#9 Dec 10, 2010
typo from previous post - meant to say 40 years.
citizen

Fitchburg, MA

#10 Dec 10, 2010
jigga what wrote:
unfortunately with all the back woods, redneck and ingorant thinking I see taking place on this board, you folks in that town look like you're pretty **** either way.
There will always be a reason to be against projects being completed, I just wonder what those excuses were back in the late 80's and early 90's when the economy was steaming right along doing well. Nobody took the time to make any progress during that time period and now everyone's complaining.
Quite the conundrum, glad I'm trying to make sure my family and I will be self sufficient and not relying on fixed incomes where you can obviously project out years ahead and determine whether or not you should even still be a homeowner or not. THere's nothing wrong with being a renter. We all have agreed to live within a social agreement that we don't divide what we use for services vs. what we don't use. If that were the case, there' wouldn't be any police or fire, or ambulance, becuase they serve such a small percentage of the population. To suggest that you don't have to pay for the town to operate services such as these because you don't use it is a little rediculous and proves the inability to make informed decsions.
Congratulations your BROCKTON domain is the no 1 TOWN in the whole state of 321 towns tohave the most forclosures!
Common sense

Westminster, MA

#11 Dec 10, 2010
Ask yourself one quick question, how long have you lived in your own home and how many people reside there?
Now take that number and factor it in to present day as it applies to a school buildings use verse your home. Roughly 500 hundred people reside in this building every day for 180 days a year, not counting the evening and weekend use by groups and the public. So when was the last time you had to replace your kitchen appliances and at most you probably on prepare meals for 5-6 people. Do you really think that equipment installed 40 years ago is still running at tip top shape? How about the differance in energy that old appliances use?
When was the last time you remodeled your home to simply paint, change flooring etc.? I bet you don't have 500 + people moving through your home wearing out the flooring and dragging in mud, snow, salt etc...
As far as remodelling verse building new, the state which is presently willing to poney up a tidy sum to build the town a new school, sets the policy and makes the decision whether they will fund a remodeling job or if it is too far gone to tackle. The later was there determination and IF you don't play by their rules you don't get the money. Where in the world are you going to get another group of (taxpayers) to help your community build this long overdue school? That's right, it's NOT just the residents of Ashburnham that are going to have their taxes effected by this project, it's everyone else in the state who are going to be paying for your new school! So much for only paying for the services you use. Taxes and maintining infastructure in a community is the price we all pay for wanting to live in a civilized society. God help us if we adopt the attitude that we are only willing to pay for what WE use. As someone already mentioned, good luck when you need police, fire or EMT service. Or for that matter, getting out of your driveway when the road is not plowed.
Hasn't anyone learned the lessons from the great ice storm? We are all in this together for better or worse.
citizen

Fitchburg, MA

#12 Dec 10, 2010
YES I believe it was the fire chief that said good luck if your house catches fire or was it one of his emts having a picnic on a satuarday afternoon.
Good luck for briggs! in the same way,
jigga what

Shirley, MA

#13 Dec 10, 2010
Again, the misinformed shout the loudest and shine the brightest. This must be your first day using the sentinel topix forum. IT's only been discussed here about a thousand times that the city listed is the IP address of the server used for internet access. So way to go Sherlock, I bet you couldn't wait to jump on that comment. Like I said, I'll be taking care of my family and our own finances so when I'm no longer working,knowing that taxes and costs of living will continue to increase, the identical lifestyle I was once living when was working should not be expected to continue without previous planning in place.

citizen wrote:
<quoted text> Congratulations your BROCKTON domain is the no 1 TOWN in the whole state of 321 towns tohave the most forclosures!
Jenn Air

Leominster, MA

#14 Dec 10, 2010
"walking throught the kitchen, the appliances are mostly original..". So does that make them good or bad? It's a testiment to the quality of the aplliances and the care of the staff. Just because a crappy plastic blender is newer doesn't make it better. When these appliances were made they were made to last. Sure you could waste your budget by going out and buying some $20 thousand dollar fancy new appliances that break every two years if thats going to make you feel better. I never realized you need a Kenmore Monogram series oven to heat up some tater tots and frozen pizza.
Paula-Mom23Ashbu rnham

Gardner, MA

#15 Dec 10, 2010
JAYE BIRD wrote:
Instead of building a whole new school, why can't they just fix this building up and put an addition on it as well for extra space? In this time of economic crisis, it would be cheaper to fix up what we already have, and add on, than to build an entirely new building!
It would cost roughly the same amount of money (approx $13 million) and up to 36 months to fix/renovate/add-on to the existing structure as compared to building a brand new school in 18 months with 58% reimbursement from the MSBA.....

What you are saying to do is like putting a bandaid on a sinking ship.
no way

Townsend, MA

#16 Dec 10, 2010
if you think this is gonna take only 18 months to build you are living in lalala land. The state is gonna milk this just like the bridge on rt 12, the depot road bridge the big dig, on and on and on, the state will do anything to make $$$.I mean it took 6 plus years to get this project going- it will take 6 more to build.
Ashburnham Resident

Gardner, MA

#17 Dec 10, 2010
I will be voting NO.
comical

Leominster, MA

#18 Dec 10, 2010
After no members of the puplic showed up the tour went on to the multi-use cafateria. That can't even have a play because it only holds 120 people. Seeing as though not 1 person from town showed up for the tour I highly doubt the third grade rendition of Thanksgiving is going to be standing room only.
Blogenburgian

Clinton, MA

#19 Dec 11, 2010
So the heat does not circulate because you placed boxes on the vents - I'm not an educator but I would move the boxes.
Lunenburg installed a new heating system and pipes for its elementary school and high school for 1.2 million.
Roof and windows: approx. another 1 million
Storage space and new appliances: 250k
Sprucing up the place: 500K
So, do a renovation:about 3 million and take the 50% state re-imbursement.
Town pays 1.5 million
Build new: 12 million

Solution: Fire bleeding heart principal, don't re-elect school committee members who support this. A 40 year old building should last another 60 years.

Lunenburg mothballed its own primary school 10 years ago and it look the same as the day it was vacated.

Hire principal who supports renovation and comes to you for money to hire qualified staff and materials that support and enhance the curriculum.
Ash Resident

Gardner, MA

#20 Dec 11, 2010
Blogenburgian wrote:
So the heat does not circulate because you placed boxes on the vents - I'm not an educator but I would move the boxes.
Lunenburg installed a new heating system and pipes for its elementary school and high school for 1.2 million.
Roof and windows: approx. another 1 million
Storage space and new appliances: 250k
Sprucing up the place: 500K
So, do a renovation:about 3 million and take the 50% state re-imbursement.
Town pays 1.5 million
Build new: 12 million
Solution: Fire bleeding heart principal, don't re-elect school committee members who support this. A 40 year old building should last another 60 years.
Lunenburg mothballed its own primary school 10 years ago and it look the same as the day it was vacated.
Hire principal who supports renovation and comes to you for money to hire qualified staff and materials that support and enhance the curriculum.
Nice Post, but what you failed to mention was that to bring the building up to Fire Code and Building Code, add another 10 million. What many of you don't realize is this is a public building and must follow the law, add the fact that the building was built 40 years ago and things have changed significantly. Take the plumbing for example, it isn't just going through and changing a few valves, the pipes are bad and need to be replaced. Putting new coat of rubber on the roof will just increase it's load and push it closer to collapsing under the heavy weight of snow, etc. This isn't just a simple fix. Lastly, where will the kids go when you have to tear out the old plumbing to put in new, if that job takes four months, where are you going to hold school? Now you are talking relocation costs...

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