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Letter: Fall River taxpayers cannot afford a new Diman

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Concerning funding a new Diman, according to the city charter, any capital project that’s in excess of $5 million “requires” a special election so that voters can voice their opinion on it. Handing off this responsibility while spending money which Fall River does not have won’t benefit the taxpayers. We have a responsibility to them and that requires planning with proper decision making. History has shown that poor financial planning produces unnecessary outcomes!

If there was anything that our public officials should have learned after coming out from Covid-19 is to tighten the belt and reign in unnecessary spending. Once ARPA money runs dry, reality will set in Fall River and tough decisions will have to be made. Just last year the former CFO told everyone that Fall River is expecting structural deficits for subsequent years to come. All of Mayor Coogan’s pay raises will become even more expensive to tackle and they won’t be sustainable long term. Again, no real benefit for the taxpayers!

With the rising cost of basic necessities due to inflation, a possible recession might come as well and that will make this time even more cost constraining. That is why Fall River’s taxpayers cannot afford a new Diman. The mayor will soon force again more tax increases and Durfee’s payment to follow is going to show why taxpayers cannot afford TWO school debt payments. The Southcoast Rail coming next year will raise the cost of living and property taxes even more because home values are expected to increase as well. The path that we are on is just not financially feasible for our taxpayers to deal with at all. Why make our grandchildren bear the cost of today’s poor financial decisions? Elected officials have a fiduciary obligation to make sure Fall River will be better off for them to inherit!

Fall River
Nelson Vasquez

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Ken Masson

    March 22, 2022 at 11:32 am

    We can’t afford not to have the larger school to produce more trades people that we have a serious shortage of. As the blue states always prove you want a better economy we have to have better educated citizens. Ether we invest now or we fail later like so many poor ass red states!

  2. Patty

    March 22, 2022 at 4:12 pm

    What about having some expansions/refurbishment being done by the students with government funding. Combine the skills needed to learn with actual real life experience being supervised by the faculty and a licensed professional.

  3. Vladimir Putinski

    March 22, 2022 at 11:44 pm

    The author of this letter believes that the Hunter Biden laptop is Russian agit-prop. If reality were a 50 mega-ton nuke and was dropped on his head, he would deny the existence of Gravity. Just because you repeat incessantly on WSAR that MSNBC and CNN are your go to source for the truth, it doesn’t make them legitimate. Remember Russian Collusion, 50 million dollars and 5 years later and no (wait for it) “Russian Collusion”. Anything this kid writes about Fall River Politics is complete misinformation due to a severe case of Mass Formation Psychosis. I do enjoy the fact that Mr.Vasquez likes to mix it up rhetorically but anything he says should be taken with a grain of salt. Make that a cup of salt. Only property owners will be directly paying for the new Durfee through a special debt exclusion resulting in a separate line item on their tax bills. Remember many city properties have no tenants or rental units to pass this tax increase on to.Those who do may not be able to due to poverty rates in Fall River.The City Council of Fall River took an important vote to not lay the cost of a new Diman on property owners, but to instead make the City find the money in it’s general fund. This is real relief to property owners by not implementing a new debt exclusion line item on property tax bills. Fall River can only raise property taxes 2.5% yearly by law. A new debt exclusion would likely be a bypass of the law limiting tax increases to 2 1/2 percent a year on property taxes. The residents of Fall River are all hurting financially due to Wuhan Corona and out of control inflation, there is no doubt. Current and future administration’s must become more efficient and creative when spending the limited funds of Fall Rivers economically repressed citizens. Maybe State and Federal monies can be allocated to a new Diman, after all these funds do belong to we the people. Fall River cannot afford to leave the youth of our city struggling for great paying Job/Trades now and into the future. Unless America which includes struggling Fall River invests in creators and designers of a manufacturing future we will struggle and be destitute on the land our forefathers left for us! God save us all?

  4. Rosco17

    March 23, 2022 at 6:44 am

    Lets recall building the “OLD” new Durfee school back in the day. It didn’t last and we had to build a “NEW” Durfee at tax payers expense. The original Durfee built in the 1800’s is a beautiful building serving now as a court house. That building is going nowhere and will be here for years to come.

    The buildings they produce now are crap. I would advise a drive by Greene School on Lapham Street. The pillars in the school yard are falling apart and the school department has yellow caution tape surrounding them.

    This is only about greasing palms and has nothing to do with what is best for our children.

  5. Edward Hill

    March 23, 2022 at 7:50 am

    The current Diman building was designed in 1964 and opened the doors to students in 1968. Been well maintained by school officials and various trade shops. However, the building is tired and needs major improvements. Plus it was built for 800 boys, today almost 1,400 students attend and 48% of those enrolled are females. Having the three towns and the city pay for all the repairs needed to an outdated building makes no sense for everyone involved. Bottom line, trade students deserve the opportunity to learn career skills in a state of the art facility. Plus once again, school officials and trade shops will maintain this new facility for another 60 years!

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