I think a FULL audit should be done on where the money is really going in this town. How is it possible that with having a court house and jail as well as the industrial park and car dealerships (which some had gone out of business due to rising taxes in this town) as well as so many other businesses in this town, and be on the top highest taxes being paid for home owners in the STATE!!? The town needs to look at the job performance of this mayor and how costly he has been, especially to those that live pay check to pay check or live on social security or retirement. As far as the towns vibrancy and excitement... being on the news every other day for all the drugs and heroin going around town isn't something to be proud of. It's becoming more of an embarrassment when you say you live in Greenfield now and people comment on it being a drug town that they are afraid to go to and would not want their children to go to school here. ...(full comment)
Fuzzy math. Pure and simple. Middle class homeowners in this town are not beneficiaries of these "services" the Mayor refers to. We are however being priced out of living in this town because the burden of covering these services is being placed squarely on our back. Exciting times in Greenfield? Seriously? Apparently I am going to be missing them as I look for a part time job to cover the new and ever rising taxes that I am paying. While a new high school was needed it certainly did not need to be built on such a grand scale. I'm leaving my hometown as soon as possible providing I can sell my house to someone who can afford to live here. It may be a while. ...(full comment)
This could be the first time in U.S. History that U.S. citizens, of any state, would be tariffed on their electricity bills to pay for a private profit pipeline. You will NOT see relief on your electricity bills any time soon: you will be paying every month for a gas pipeline: less the 1/4 of the gas shipped through that will benefit Massachusetts or the whole Northeast. The rest is going to "the Maritimes and Canada" (this from Kinder Morgan representatives) . . . so shipment abroad. If you think gas prices here will stay "cheap" you must be smoking some heavy stuff:
Your electricity bill is going to go up, first to pay for the pipeline through a tariff, and then when have to compete with world markets for a resource that we already fund through massive federal subsidies and exemptions from all kinds of legislation and taxation. ...(full comment)
It will take more than this bill to improve management and oversight of housing authorities without much accountability. More taxpayer support for a broken system that excludes those they supposedly serve, will achieve nothing accept more waste. Lawmakers, state agencies and public officials need to look closely at the current lack of transparency and return. Clear federal oversight and legal advocacy for those without a voice would be a start. Ignoring the problem using media spin is political ineffectiveness at its best. Publishing the facts and indisputable truth will also support real change. Regionalizing only works when the all those involved openly perform their mandated responsibilities. Otherwise, it becomes a much larger problem by wasting even more public and human resources. ...(full comment)
Transparency and tenant participation would improve Housing Authorities. This includes adequate inspections, access to those results, code-compliant housing, a grievance process that allows tenants to resolve issues, and complete oversight. If records are hidden, Reasonable Accommodations denied, repairs completed without the necessary permits (in a questionable fashion), there are serious problems that need to be addressed. Public money pays for the operation of Housing Authorities---the figures would astound most people. More money will not fix a broken system, however, full transparency, strong federal oversight, and tenant advocates with resident participation for each project/community is a good start. This includes properties set up under Housing Authority related non-profit public charities as Limited-Liability Companies. As long as public money is used for any public project, cause, or need---there should be an expectation of complete disclosure by those footing that bill. If things are hidden, something is amiss. Just ask tenants living in the Ashfield house Apartments, a subsidiary owned by Ashfield House LLC, whose sole managing member is Rural Development, Inc., the non-profit public charity affiliate of the Franklin County Regional Housing and Redevelopment Authority. ...(full comment)
I see all the wasted rooftop space all over Massachusetts: and vacant malls, parking lots . . . and there is plenty of terrain that is too steep to farm, but a perfect setting for solar.
All these entities that propose things always seem to want to demand private land near people and residences, or near the best land for food, or very close to water resources. there are plenty of places that would be perfect for locating some energy projects but the idea seems to be to harm people and their land and communities as part of the deal. ...(full comment)
I envy what PVTA did with their comprehensive service analysis . This is the type of study the state intended to legislate in the recent transportation bill. I don't understand what is happening in Franklin County. Please read this document to understand what should be happening. Compliments to Mary MacInnes for such a complete study.
http://www.pvta.com/media/pdfs/PVTA_CSA_FinalReportAppendicesJune2014.pdf ...(full comment)
the Ramblers has been there for as long as I can remember. it is a great club that doesn't mess with the animals and wildlife in the area. they help the community by doing fund raisers and other things. being a past member of the Ramblers and an officer I know what the club is first hand wish I was still there to help with to keep the club where it is and preserve the tradition of the Ramblers. simply put a great group of people with the common love of motorcycles that love to ride and help others . why do the polititians need to jump in and spoil something that helps others??? Long Live The Mohawk Ramblers............ ...(full comment)
Producing 100MW requires about 68,000 truckloads of wood (25 cords per truck) a year per the report "Vermont Electric Power in Transition" www.coalitionforenergysolutions.org.
VY produces 600 MW to the grid, 620 MW total.
A lot of gas will be needed! ...(full comment)
The used fuel will very likely be reused, without "reprocessing" (separating uranium and plutonium), in reactors designed to do this. Prototypes proved this long ago.
China is going full-bore on one type and may buy all this used fuel from us. We will be left in the dust.
Towns knew from the beginning that the plant would be decommissioned some day. Why didn't they have a savings account for that? ...(full comment)