Monthly Archives: June 2007

Happy with the latest budget?

I’m still trying to find out details, but at least education doesn’t appear to be suffering as much as I feared.



Filed under budget, referendum, town council

Bye, Theresa! Taxpayer prez says she’s moving

“I myself am not able to afford to live in this town,” [Theresa] McGrath said. She said her agenda was to cut taxes. “I don’t want to move. I’m going to have to move,” she said.

Maybe I’m crazy, but if West Hartford Taxpayer co-prez Theresa McGrath is moving, why is she setting our community’s agenda? If she’s “going to have to move” then why is she given any attention at all? I can barely afford to stay, but I’m staying. She isn’t, apparently, so why do we care what she says?


Filed under budget, News, referendum, Theresa McGrath, West Hartford Taxpayers Association

Now the council needs to stand strong

The town council plans to hold a public comment hearing on how to revise the budget starting at 7:30 p.m.  The council itself will vote on Wednesday night.

“Residents are welcome to come and offer their views,” Mayor Scott Slifka told the Courant. “We want to make sure people know about it and that it will be televised.”

So what will happen? What should we tell the council? What should the council do?

My own suggestion is simple: don’t cut more from education.


Filed under budget, education, referendum, town council, West Hartford, West Hartford Taxpayers Association

Seniors (in high school at least) should get a break

The administrators at our high school are entirely no fun.

It seems like every time kids do something relatively harmless, like painting a rock or starting a food fight, the folks in charge go crazy.

Here’s a tidbit from the Courant’s story about Hall’s graduation:

“I don’t even want to shake our principal’s hand,” disgruntled senior Alex Foley, 18, said before the ceremony.
Foley is leaving Hall with a sour taste in her mouth because her friend, Mike Rempe, 18, was not allowed to participate in commencement ceremonies because of his involvement in a massive food fight during senior prank time last week. Rempe took his shirt off, wrapped it around his head, and ran out of the cafeteria, despite commands to stop, to divert attention so that the food fight could begin.
Though he did not throw any food, Rempe, along with the senior who threw the first pasta dish, was handed a 10-day suspension and banned from graduation.
The same week, students say, two Hall seniors were found smoking marijuana in the school parking lot during lunch and were given three-day suspensions. They were allowed to participate at graduation.
Foley argued that the difference in punishments reflects the school’s bizarre priorities.
“It’s like they’d rather have you smoke weed at lunch than start a food fight,” she said. “Does that make any sense?”

No, it makes no sense at all.

The appropriate penalty was to make the instigators clean up the mess they caused and perhaps do a little more community service work around the school. But banning them from graduation for a food fight? C’mon, let’s get real.

Every year we get these stories.

These folks need to lighten up.


Filed under education, Hall High, News, Schools, senior pranks

New York is taking over

The news that New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg has dumped the Republican Party to become an independent opens up a fascinating scenario that I haven’t seen discussed yet: the possibility that we could have a serious three-way race for president among three New Yorkers.

Imagine a ballot where we’d have to choose between New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and current New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg.  It’s an amazing scenario to contemplate given that New York’s political clout on the national scene has been dwindling for decades.

Was there ever even a presidential race where two New Yorkers faced off? 1940 maybe?

In any case, after all the talk of power shifting to the Sun Belt, it’s at least curious that New York could hold such sway in a presidential election.

For Connecticut, that can’t be a bad thing. We’re clearly better off with a New York president than another guy from down South, whichever side of the aisle he may hail from.

Personally, I can’t quite grok that I may have to vote for Hillary next year, but time will tell.


Filed under Bloomberg, Guliani, Hillary, New York, Politics, president, presidential race

Why announce DUI checkpoints?

WEST HARTFORD — — The police department will set up a driving-under-the-influence checkpoint Friday evening in the area of New Britain Avenue and Shield Street, department officials said. Police plan to run the checkpoint between 6 p.m. Friday and 2 a.m. Saturday.

This little blurb is in today’s Courant, clearly the result of a press release. Why is it announced ahead of time? I suppose most drunks don’t think about how to avoid the cops, but surely some on the margin will do just that. I remember in much younger days giving some thought when driving home from the local watering hole as to which route would be least likely to have police along the way. Who exactly is helped by this practice and how come it’s done?


Filed under DUI, police, Public safety

Seeking contributors

It’s increasingly obvious to me that this little blog is serving a badly needed role in West Hartford as a place where issues can be raised, discussed and maybe eventually resolved (though we’ll see about the latter!). It’s really more than I can handle in a few minutes now and again, which is what I envisioned when I started out.

What would help it out most, for now anyway, would be to add a few more people who could write some pieces for this, to make sure the blog keeps up with the news and to offer appropriate topics to talk about.

You don’t need to match my politics. You only need to have a willingness to jump in and write some stuff occasionally.

I can’t pick everybody for this, but I’d sure like to have a few, particularly since I’ll be away sometimes over the summer.


Filed under blog