City street sweepers in disrepair - Sentinel & Enterprise

All four of the city's street sweepers are broken, Public Works Commissioner Lenny Laakso said Monday. Full Story
Marie in the Burg

Northampton, MA

#63 Apr 1, 2009
I was surprised to see one of the street sweepers on Electric Ave this morning. From the newspaper story, I assumed they were all totally inoperable. The machine was basically just sweeping sand in to a pile, and the DPW guys were shoveling up the pile.
Just Sayin

Hanson, MA

#64 Apr 1, 2009
Mr Fitchburg wrote:
<quoted text>
Still using the taxpayers computers from your state office of consumer affairs we see, Jason.
Aren't you on thin ice?
When are you going to buy a home in Fitchburg?
I already told you I'm not Jason. You can find him at Fitchburg Now on Facebook. And I did sign up as a friend so look at the friends and you'll find me there.

Since: Mar 08

Lowell, MA

#65 Apr 1, 2009
Rent one of the ones Leominster has, they have at least 2, in good condition....
Counsellor

Peabody, MA

#66 Apr 1, 2009
J_in_ Ward_1 wrote:
It can be argued that multifamily rentals don't carry their own weight. For instance, take tripledecker #1 inhabited by a single family with 2 children who may attend public or private schools.
Now imagine the same tripledecker divided into 3 apartments with a total of 5 children, all of whom go to public schools (since those who rent are less likely to have the funds for parochial or private schools).
The rental building is going to cost a lot more in city services, probably not balanced out by the higher tax rate on commercial property vs. residential property.
Well, yes, anything can be argued. For example, most commerical enterprises that pay the higher rate don't have children to send to any school, so maybe it does balance out just fine. Show me the numbers.
Brian

Londonderry, NH

#67 Apr 1, 2009
King of Fitchburg wrote:
<quoted text>
If I were King of Fitchburg I would have handed the school department budget back to them as submitted a year ago and told them to bring it back 10% lighter without firing a teacher or janitor.
Same deal with every department head. Bring me a budget 10% smaller than last year.
I would not have called my **** wiper a Chief of Staff. He or she would have been my administrative assistant and I would not have hired a secretary and called her an admin asst.
I would have hired a local police chief who had the support of the police department and a knowledge of the neighborhoods and the neighbor hoods.
I would have put surplus city property on the market on day one with a price drop every thirty days until sold, some sold for a buck with strings attached to turn them around and make them tax producing within one year.
I would have negotiated TIF plans with the requirement that jobs be offered to qualified Fitchburg residents first for as long as the TIF was in place.
I would have fired the head of Fitchburg Housing Authority and implemented local preference and 80% elderly quota in the elderly buildings, spot checks in family housing to eliminate drug dealing daddies from moving in with the subsidized moms.
I would have begun turning off streetlights on day one. I wouldn't have announced it to the media.
I would have informed the president of Fitchburg STATE college that until they pay the equivalent of property taxes in the form of PILOT, they will be responsible for their own street lights and will be billed for every call from our fire and police departments and any other city service rendered to them.
Ditto every nonprofit in this city.
I would not have held the Fitchburg Library political hostage to an ill conceived trash fee. I would have cut their budget to an amount still eligible for a waiver and I would have directed the now dearly departed librarian to apply for the waiver or not bother reporting to work.
I would have advised every city department to report within 30 days the condition of all their equipment and vehicles with a priority list for repair or replacement.
I would have accepted every offer of assistance and advice from the mayor of our neighboring city. And I would have paid for the coffee.
I would have asked the governor to send in all the national guard and coast guard personnel legally permitted with boots on the ground to clear debris and roadways and make way for utility crews.
AND I would have driven to Schoenberger's home with an entourage to tell him to personally get his behind to Fitchburg and sleep in an emergency shelter with the people he had rendered homeless until he had the lights back on.
I would have convened the healthcare task force in January 2008, not summer 2009 and provided reasonable options with a take it or leave it proposas, and I would have NEGOTIATED with the bargaining units for a CUT in pay, not raises.
That's it for starters.
Wong is hopeless, inexperienced, uncaring, unfeeling - and despite her "degrees" she is NOT very bright!
Oh yeah, she's also a socialist.
Please come to Fitchburg and run for mayor. Please..........
Just Sayin

Hanson, MA

#68 Apr 1, 2009
Brian wrote:
<quoted text>
Please come to Fitchburg and run for mayor. Please..........
She already entered the race, but dropped out due to health reasons. This is not helpful.
Mike from Leominster

United States

#69 Apr 1, 2009
Just Sayin wrote:
<quoted text>
She already entered the race, but dropped out due to health reasons. This is not helpful.
Whether it is her or not, I echo the others in that the list was mostly a "tell people to do _________." I will say that if the current mayor has a shortcoming it is public persona and public perception. She needs to develop her "bada.s.s." streak.

As far as potential though, and having the tools to succeed, she is Fitchburg's best hope in years.
Steve B

AOL

#70 Apr 1, 2009
Just like the "King of Fitchburg", we could all spout out our objectives. What is reality? Come on, grow up.
Solutions

Peabody, MA

#71 Apr 1, 2009
Well, since we all have our ideas, here is mine. I guarantee you it is the least popular one you will ever hear, but it will work.

Figure out how much it is going to cost to reopen the library on a normal schedule, turn all the lights back on, adquately staff the schools, and essential town departments like public safety. If its the whole five million, forget it, it won't work. But let's say its a million dollars. This is a five year plan to get back to start.

Year 1: Proposition 2 1/2 override for 1 million dollars. BUT, only raise and appropriate $250,000. Put $250,000 into the budget.

Year 2: Raise and appropriate $500,000. But $250,000 into stablization,$250,000 into the budget

Year 3: Raise and appropriate the $750,000. Put $250,000 into stablization,$500,000 into the budget.

Year 4: Raise and appropriate the whole million, and $250,000 into stablization,$750,000 into the budget.

Year 5: Raise and appropriate the whole million, and put it in the budget.

You have also banked $750,000 in this process, which can either build your stablization fund, or be used for unforseen expenses like a really bad winter.

Look, I am not inside Fitchburg's budget, I don't know if the number is right, but the idea is to marginally increase the tax levy for 5 years to fix what ever number a consensus thinks is right.

Told you it would not be popular!
Just sayin

Cambridge, MA

#72 Apr 2, 2009
The library, alone, is over a million EVERY YEAR at the level it was prior to the cuts.
disgusted

New York, NY

#73 Apr 2, 2009
The mayor wants to start a municiple electric co-op?
Wow how is she going to maintain our power lines?
She can't even keep a street sweeper running. I think it is time for Lisa to be known as a former mayor.
Real World

Braintree, MA

#74 Apr 2, 2009
And I think it's time to throw you under the street sweepers!
Summer Breeze

Bolton, MA

#75 Apr 2, 2009
What? Street sweeping is scheduled for July 27 in my ward. That's just swell. We get to enjoy our sand filled street, with the cars and summer winds kicking up a dust bowl till the end of July.

No jobs, the economy in the tank, useless politicians and a dust bowl.

All that's missing are the breadlines.
Solutions

Princeton, MA

#76 Apr 2, 2009
Summer Breeze wrote:
What? Street sweeping is scheduled for July 27 in my ward. That's just swell. We get to enjoy our sand filled street, with the cars and summer winds kicking up a dust bowl till the end of July.
No jobs, the economy in the tank, useless politicians and a dust bowl.
All that's missing are the breadlines.
Maybe it would help to think of it as a beach.
Steve B

AOL

#77 Apr 2, 2009
Solutions wrote:
Well, since we all have our ideas, here is mine. I guarantee you it is the least popular one you will ever hear, but it will work.
Figure out how much it is going to cost to reopen the library on a normal schedule, turn all the lights back on, adquately staff the schools, and essential town departments like public safety. If its the whole five million, forget it, it won't work. But let's say its a million dollars. This is a five year plan to get back to start.
Year 1: Proposition 2 1/2 override for 1 million dollars. BUT, only raise and appropriate $250,000. Put $250,000 into the budget.
Year 2: Raise and appropriate $500,000. But $250,000 into stablization,$250,000 into the budget
Year 3: Raise and appropriate the $750,000. Put $250,000 into stablization,$500,000 into the budget.
Year 4: Raise and appropriate the whole million, and $250,000 into stablization,$750,000 into the budget.
Year 5: Raise and appropriate the whole million, and put it in the budget.
You have also banked $750,000 in this process, which can either build your stablization fund, or be used for unforseen expenses like a really bad winter.
Look, I am not inside Fitchburg's budget, I don't know if the number is right, but the idea is to marginally increase the tax levy for 5 years to fix what ever number a consensus thinks is right.
Told you it would not be popular!
Yes, yes, yes. I totally agree. Now how do we get that done?
turg

Middleboro, MA

#78 Apr 2, 2009
Instead of paying the bills the city wanted to put a million dollars in the bank and they wonder why we are million dollars in a deficit. I am not going to pay my taxes and inform the city I need to start my own stabilization fund because I may need the money someday. The stabilization fund was to keep our bond rating. I do not know to many businesses borrowing money when the are level funded.
Network

Belmont, MA

#79 Apr 2, 2009
Just Sayin wrote:
<quoted text>
She already entered the race, but dropped out due to health reasons. This is not helpful.
Hmm... all of Just Sayin's posts seem to be coming through from locations that coincidentally have state network servers. And during work hours too. if Just Sayin was a state employee that wouldn't be too nice now would it.
Constitution

Belmont, MA

#80 Apr 2, 2009
Mike from Leominster wrote:
<quoted text>
Whether it is her or not, I echo the others in that the list was mostly a "tell people to do _________." I will say that if the current mayor has a shortcoming it is public persona and public perception. She needs to develop her "bada.s.s." streak.
As far as potential though, and having the tools to succeed, she is Fitchburg's best hope in years.
She also seems to have a little problem with the Constitution and the City Charter.

Wonder if she's going to hand out her draft budget to the city council before she goes on vacation next week. Whatever happened to that draft budget anyway? She backed out on her promise to make the presentation last month.

Any bets on whether she will swear in the council president as pro tem as the law requires?
Mark72

United States

#81 Apr 2, 2009
Amazed wrote:
Why don't people go out and sweep and shovel the street in front of their own home?
I'm all for that, but what do we with 100 pounds of sand mixed with salt?
Solutions

Princeton, MA

#82 Apr 2, 2009
Constitution wrote:
<quoted text>
She also seems to have a little problem with the Constitution and the City Charter.
Wonder if she's going to hand out her draft budget to the city council before she goes on vacation next week. Whatever happened to that draft budget anyway? She backed out on her promise to make the presentation last month.
Any bets on whether she will swear in the council president as pro tem as the law requires?
Ok, you want to share with us which Constitutional provisions you think she has violated? And your charter reference is equally vague, care to tell us under what circumstances you think it requires her to swear in the council president?

And just curious, are you a lawyer?

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