As this blog’s title suggests …

Rye homesteaders await the arrival of Julia B. Fee and her client's sealed bid

Rye homesteaders await the arrival of Julia B. Fee and her client’s offer

For what it’s worth – E mail from reader:

I just heard some anecdotal evidence that I thought might make some interesting blog fodder.  I was with a friend from Rye who said that houses in Rye are going to sealed bids recently and selling for a lot more than the asking prices.  Her reasoning was the schools.  I find that interesting given that Greenwich taxes are about 1/3 the price.  Rye used to always trade at a discount to Greenwich because of taxes, I thought.  Now that doesn’t seem to be the case.  What would you attribute that to?  Just wondering what you and the rest of the readers might think.  Might make people a little more interested in focusing on school performance and less interested in racial diversity and music auditoriums!

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122 responses to “As this blog’s title suggests …

  1. Anonymous

    I thought the music auditorium attracts all the students fleeing to the private schools?

  2. Just because houses in Rye are going for more than asking price doesn’t mean that a house in Rye is now selling for more than a house in Greenwich.

    Rye is pricey, no question, but may not have surpassed the nosebleed prices in Greenwich, particularly the red hot OG and Riverside markets.

    • Incognito

      As the person who posed this question to begin with, these were not cheap houses my friend was talking about. They were in the $4-$6 mil range. I would say that’s pretty comparable to Greenwich. And according to CF, I don’t think that price point is moving much in Greenwich anyway. Again, this was anecdotal and certainly not a general statement, but was interesting to hear about Rye’s activity when houses in mid-country and back country Greenwich seem to have to take haircut after haircut to find a buyer.

      • Anonymous

        Taxes on a 4-6mm house in Rye would be absurd. You could easily afford private school for the difference and get your kids a much better education.

        • Greenwich Gal

          The problem is, it is very difficult to actually get IN to the private schools.

        • InfoDiva

          Absurd to the tune of $75K a year, in fact. And let’s not forget NY’s higher state income taxes.
          There’s a reason all those hedge fund guys want to be in CT.

          I think the letter writer Chris speaks of is probably a real estate agent in Rye.

        • Inagua

          GG is probably right about the private school situation, at least if it is anything like it was in 1986 when a tax law change forced me to leave Locust Valley for (then) tax-free Connecticut. I got the private school directory and started with GA and worked my way up the coast until I found an opening at Greens Farms Academy in Fairfield.

        • Incognito

          The marginal tax rate in NYS is not that much higher than CT these days, and, given the state of CT’s finances, will probably be even soon.

        • hmmm

          agreed…the tax rate difference is negligible the jealousy in hartford has seen to it…

        • greenITCH

          If you are a HF manager the additional carrying cost are insignificant and INFO diva , unless my HF is based in CT I pay the NYS tax anyway … more and more new HFs are opening in NY as opposed to CT … tax situation not as generous as it use to be and when looking to raise assets in post 2008 world I can get a lot more meetings in NY ( esp those that are last minute ) then I can in NY .. that is just a fact .. also NY commercial real estate pricing has eased and technology required to host my business is more abundant . Additionally my ability to hire and recruit , esp young talent is just so much easier … that is one of the main drivers UBS is moving any of their front office / trading and sales jobs back into the city

  3. greenITCH

    Had some friends from city up this w.e and typical of NYC dwellers headed north as they have a 2 and 4yr old ….took them to Todds point for BBQ .. they asked where is the park ….I told them we are getting a new historic barn , new visitor center with snack bar / seating facing the water ! Response was , Really ? .. Took them by the OG Civic center see what events going on….saw state of that building.. and they said ..” Oh Dear !” . took them by Riverside school and went to playground, I raved to them about RS academic standing ….response was .. ” the Grade School I went to and maybe my parents was Newer than this ! ….Told them about MISA and the HS …they said ” $40m on an Auditorium, well I guess that is Greenwich …they didn’t seem to care about our new police station central fire house … They had planned on bidding on house in Mid Country …gave them lawyer and inspector .. they came back today and said headed north ( Darien, maybe NC or Westport ) – they don’t want to deal with potential for busing as well had heard about kids in trailers in schools / classrooms .. as a young family they were rather shocked at the lack of town amenities for kids . their final comment was ” well I guess that explains why taxes are lower to comparably priced houses in other towns ….” voting with their wallet

    • To be brutal, and not taking away at all from their lack of interest in the new police station and music palace, we really don’t need another young family who wants Tods Point developed and more ( !) playtime amenities for their spawn. New Canaan can have them: let those taxpayers deal with their demands.

      • Anonymous

        Agree, and I have young kids, there is plenty of activities here in town, go to youth soccer behind town hall on a Saturday morning, go to Arch Street for middle school parties, there is a long long list of things to do. Oh and BTW my kids love Tod’s Point, community sailing, great 1.5 mile waterfront walk, it doesn’t need one more slide and swing set to be a great amenity.

        • Martha

          I agree. And, don’t forget to let your littles actually get bored (heaven forbid!) they might actually glean some creativity😉

        • New in Town

          I agree – with one exception. Eastern Civic Center is absolutely horrible. It is unsafe and an eyesore. So many adults and children use the building and fields, and the condition is appalling.

    • Anonymous

      That’s what all people say that can’t afford Greenwich.

      • InfoDiva

        Lived in town 30 years. In my experience, The folks who find fault with the amenities in Greenwich just can’t afford to live here in the kind of house they think they deserve.

        • Yardbird

          Exactly.

        • Anonymous

          That’s a ridiculous generalization. I know its a quaint concept, but some of us just want VALUE for the taxes paid. There are a lot of great things about Greenwich (library system for one) but please do not sugar coat the horrendous state of a lot of other facilities that are DECADES from getting attention.

        • greenITCH

          Info diva .. you obviously don’t take the train nor work in the city .. are u a housewife , part time real estate agent , most of the Greenwich commute is closer to an hour if not more … ( and don’t tell me with the main Greenwich stop how great it is . my buddy must moved over to stanwich rd and its an easy 20 minutes to train platform ) . I am not sure how u quantify ” better quality of life ” ? we have a nice beach and a nice library .. that is it …. any other town has nicer amenities and infrastructure …

      • hmmm

        that’s just a silly comment you must be a MISA supporter

        • InfoDiva

          To Anon at 6:47: Value for taxes paid doesn’t come from having a Civic Center with shining floors. I dare you to find a town with a better quality of life within a 47 minute commute from midtown Manhattan.

        • Anonymous

          InfoDiva, who said anything about a civic center.? Its the schools–that take up most of the property taxes–and, admittedly, from school superintendents on down, say many of our schools look like crap.

        • hmmm

          info diva you’re full of shit…you comment on this blog complaining about the assessments of riverside/og to back country mid country..you have lived in this town for 30 years fed off of the fiefdom not willing to put a dime into anything yet you complain about your assessment…you want the riverside/og folks to pay their fair share yet you seem to not want to pay for anything…you think living near manhattan is all that is required….moronic

          the infrastructure in this town does suck are you blind?

          my question is how much more do we need to raise taxes? do we need a 800 million dollar budget?

          • Toonces

            Hmmm, maybe the money in the budget is fine as is but needs to be allocated differently. If Fairfield spends 1/2 and is the same size as Chris said, Greenwich is doing something very wrong. The answer is not always “raise taxes”.

  4. Toonces

    Greenwich has about 1/3 taxes. So take a Greenwich house taxed at 12,000/yr and instead buy a home in Rye that costs less and has a 36,000/yr tax bill. For that additional 24 grand you get what amounts to a private school for your kids. Rye High school is, I think, rated 50th in the US for best high schools. An excellent school. You’d pay a whole lot more to send 2-3 kids to private schools in Greenwich. Or go to darien, Westport, new canaan and pay less for your house but more in taxes and get better schools. I wouldn’t want to live in any of those towns but others might disagree. Greenwich needs to fix the schools. Academically. I am not talking about music palaces, an utter waste of money.

    • greenwich dude

      24grand for how many kid?

      • Toonces

        Yo Greenwich dude: 24 grand additional taxes in rye gets you schools as good as (or close to) private for as many kids as you have. pretty cheap since tuition in private school for one kid is 30G plus donations.
        But I agree with later posters (Patrick for one) who mention that the reason Greenwich school scores are lower is diversity. Separate those kids out and you have high scores – same as Darien, Rye etc…

        • Anonymous

          I hate to pop your bubbles Toonces and GreenwichDude but Riverside Middle has dropped in scores and ranking have no minorities (except Asians that likely help their scores). No, there is a problem more structural going on in the schools and it shows in the number of families INCREASING year to year to the private schools.

          • Toonces

            by “riverside middle” do you mean Eastern Middle School? I don’t think scores have dropped there, but I am focused on the high school now.

        • greenITCH

          Fact is toonces u cant separate those kids and the state now wants to make sure they are dispersed around town and will likely drag down Riverside and OG .. if teacher is spending her time helping a child whose second language is English , chances are she isn’t help my child advance and reach his potential . its a sad fact .. agree on the economy of scale ,. you have 2 -3 kids its just cheaper to live in Rye and get the good schools

          • Toonces

            What I meant by separating the kids out : Look at the scores of each group separately and you’ll see that Greenwich isn’t so different from Westport or Darien. But, yes – I do think teaching to the different levels is a solution to raising scores, as others have mentioned. A

  5. Anonymous

    As a family with young kids I couldn’t agree more – this town has so much to offer for kids – Bruce Park playground is great, all elementary schools have wonderful playgrounds, Audebon is amazing, Tod’s point is terrific, the library is the best, and there are countless classes and offerings for toddlers and kids – the town actually offers tons of sports classes and activities for kids at very affordable prices. Some further anecdotal evidence: I have just met several families who bought in Rye for the amazing schools, were severely disappointed, and now end up taking their kids to private school in Greenwich.

    • Anonymous

      Anon at 3:20pm—you may not realize but most of your items on your list are not even Town provided but private funded—Bruce Park playground (junior Legue), Audubon (private non profit), Tod’s point–(Friends Group and Greenwich Conservancy) library (huge amount of private donors)….

      • greenITCH

        agreed AND by the way .. you can drive over from Rye and use them ALL whenever you want .. including the Library where any day u will find 20 – 30 % of the license plates on the cars are NY ….

  6. Anonymous

    Do you really think people buying a $4-6MM house give a s&^! about public school performance? Unless of course it’s tough to get into one of Greenwich’s private schools, I suppose then it is. But otherwise, have money, will travel.

    • Yardbird

      Depends on the school.
      GA AND BWICK. Tough, but if you are up for spending 25k for Pre k, and 30-40 for k-12, and plus plus plus…then yes, have money will travel…all over town to every fundraiser they tell you to….all so little Timmy can go to your alma mater
      Then there’s:
      Stanwich school, which has been sending flyers and putting out signage all over town. Sounds like Tamarack after they built their clubhouse.
      Went from asking Ahmad Rashad and Samuel L. Jones who they were caddying for, to….hey homey g’s, you’re on the tee

      • Yardbird

        Freaking AutoSpell thingy
        Samuel L. Jackson

      • hmmm

        what’s with the flyers? are they struggling or are they taking advantage of the sad state of affairs of the greenwich school system?

        • Anonymous

          They aren’t struggling – they are in the best spot they have been for years now that they own the entire campus and have started to improve on their facilities. That being said, the school has room to grow and so trying to make sure that people looking for private school options come and take a look strikes me as the right approach.

        • Yardbird

          I’m not sure
          I’ve gotten 4 since we moved in July
          They could doing wonderful.
          But I have never gotten anything from GA, BRUNSWICK OR GCDS.
          Ever.

          Just sayin

        • Anonymous

          I think its more of the latter. I received a flyer for Whitby School the other day, too. Schools smell an opportunity with the nonsense going on.

  7. Yardbird

    You wanna be in g town?
    You wanna drive a Maserati?
    You wanna sip a martini?
    You better work bitch.

  8. Patrick

    The concept that Greenwich schools are not good is just wrong mostly due to the socioeconomic diversity and the reporting process. Greenwich should break out test score by school lunch eligible vs. not eligible to get a true sense of how we compare to other more homogenous towns such as Darien. I’d be willing to bet we’re pretty close.

    • Riverside Chick

      You can’t tell by school lunch , parents want to save their child the embarrassment that they have to get a separate lunch (not the same offered to others that pay) and will find $7 a day. Other option, see how many students are on Husky Coverage. Much better indicator.

      • Anonymous

        Patrick, are you new in Town? It seems you have bought the schools administration party line–hook, line, and sinker—-its the poor and black/Hispanic kids ruining Greenwich schools. Well, you need to look at the records at Old Greenwich, Riverside, Parkway, North Street—and see how many of the students are leaving for the private schools. All of these schools have a very low minority/poor count and yet white folks are leaving. Why? Could it be the nonsense distrations of racial balancing or the flavor of the month academic program—IB, Common Core, digital learning, etc etc ? All of the above?

        • Yardbird

          Very good point.
          First they talk about a new curriculum
          Then they study one
          Then they pilot / test
          Then they implement
          7 years later they start a new one

          It’s pathetic.
          Parents night was a joke

          But, it could be worse.

          And there are plenty of pot bellied, silver spoon, over fed, over worked, shy, sheltered, hamster-wheel kids at the top private schools here in town that may never amount to anything but mid level bankers with trust funds that compensate for their lack of go get it done yourself ness.

          It use to boggle my mind about how much these parents spend molding their yoots into Ivy League hopefuls,
          But now that I have kids, I suppose I will attempt to do the same.

    • greenITCH

      parents don’t ” wrong mostly due to the socioeconomic diversity and the reporting process ” ..they look online or at a US news report .. when I tell friends the school scores are dragged down by the 20 % minority population they cross the town off the list .. its that simple

  9. Mickster

    CF,
    I suggest you tell your “Rye Connection” to review her meds with her pharmacist. The story is BS.
    As far as Town facilities are concerned, people should get a copy of the Parks & Rec newsletter – what they have on offer is impressive.
    Are many Town buildings in disrepair? Absolutely, but I think there has to be an overall review of these and a plan developed. Most of the brightest people I know were educated in 2-roomed schoolhouses and most of the talented sport stars out there honed their skills on streets and old playgrounds with few facilities.

    • hmmm

      exactly, so why are we building MISA?

    • Incognito

      Mickster – Thanks for the advice…was wondering if my meds were off again! Thank GOD for concerned citizens like you!

      As for the story, I never mentioned town facilities, so not sure what you are referring to. With regards to schools, maybe back when you were a “kid,” two-room schoolhouses were de rigueur. But that is certainly not what folks are looking for today when they are dropping a couple (plus) mil on a house and a town. So that was all I was commenting on. Wondering if the state of our school dysfunction is causing Greenwich to lose out on some of the housing rebound. That’s all.

      What will REALLY be interesting is to see what happens out in the ‘burbs if DeBlasio wins the NYC mayoral race. I would hope that would be a boon for Greenwich real estate, but maybe they’ll stop just shy of the border.

      • Mickster

        Incognito, glad you could take a joke – let’s not just repeat Rye pillow talk – let’s stick to the facts.
        The reference to the facilities was a response to another comment after yours.
        People coming from NYC have all all sorts of expectations from different towns. They are mostly young parents some of whow feel ‘things’ and buildings are what are important in their kids’ development. Those of us who’ve BTDT know its the teachers they have, the friends they make here and the open spaces whether it be parks or beaches,

      • Riverside Chick

        Doesn’t seem they are stopping just shy of the border, they are crossing over. Have you noticed the huge influx of new Range Rovers driven by blond bobble heads with NJ and NY plates? I have in Riverside/OG.

    • greenITCH

      yeah good point .. but that 2 room school you talk about is in Indiana and u were likely watching the movie ” Hoosiers ” ..where a house cost $ 250 k …. and the honing ones skills on streets are in Harlem … this is Greenwich and the towns amenities are not at all first rate as most would think .. in fact they aren’t even second rate

  10. anon

    Used to be you would move to Rye as a young family, Dad would make partner, then you would move up to Greenwich to be with the right kind of people. Now those people are in Montecito or Montana so why not trade up and keep your kids in the Rye School system. Apawamis ain’t Round Hill but it’s not bad.

    • Yardbird

      Round hill is perfect right now!
      Greens aerated in August, and they are back up to speed.10.5+ on the stimp.
      The 200 trees they lost during Sandy was a major improvement.
      It makes you feel like you are in another world, and despite what some have said….no, you cannot hear the merrit.
      I stood on the 3rd tee (furthest from the clubhouse) closest to the merrit in proximity around 5 pm on a weekday, and not a peep.

      RH now number 2 only to Stanwich (in g town that is)

  11. anon

    Have you seen Rye High? Looks like a boarding school, class size is small, just about zero diversity. 50th in the country and 9th in NY State. I know a family that due to divorce moved to Greenwich but are paying 25k per annum per kid to keep their kids in Rye as tuition students.

  12. Greenwich Gal

    You guys can argue but the fact of the matter is – Greenwich is looking pretty dumpy these days. The schools, the parks – all need help. Central Middle School looks like a project in the Bronx. People get turned off and leave. I know of two families who moved here, enrolled in the public schools and were gone to Darien within a year. If we don’t get the school situation under control, there will only be more of this.

    • hmmm

      agreed…dumpy indeed…the problem with all of it is that our budget is already nearly 500 million not chump change and and to give this pig a face lift we are going to need a lot more money and that’s the scary part of it all. who’s paying for that?

      and yes the schools need to be fixed and the word might be out about the awful state of affairs but it doesn’t seem like this is something that gets repaired overnight or even in 2 years…

      I think the damage has been done in the short term which will have long term effects.

  13. Anonymous

    Sorry to not join in with the group delight with Town facilities—but for families there needs to be a lot better show for spending $500 million a year in the Town budget. I expect schools that don’t look they are from the 1950’s with their dark hallways and low ceilings, decent and lots of playing fields, ice hockey rink, well maintained parks (ponds and all) traffic islands . Where is all that money going for our measly 60,000 residents?

    • As I pointed out here a couple of months ago, Fairfield, population 60,000 (just like Greenwich), diverse population, same general geographical size, has a budget that’s 1/2 of ours. Where’s all that money going to? Good question.

    • red herring

      Check the town payrolls and the union coffers and you might find where it all goes. 2/3 of every dollar collected goes to the schools, and 85% of that goes to payroll for teachers/administrators. We basically have a fixed cost because you can’t lay anyone off and you can’t lower their wages or touch their benefits/pensions. Taxpayers in this town are dopes, and have no idea how wasteful the administration is.

      • Anonymous

        red herring….it is within local control to manage these so-called “fixed expenses”, but that would require the unfortunate reality that you may have to give your pal and/or family member a pay cut (since they all work in one way or another for the Town), or worse, have them lose a job…..and that ain’t happening anytime soon. Local control has been ceded to the Townies and good luck touching that 10,000 lb gorilla.

  14. Anonymous

    Where’s all the $ going? Pensions for town employee retirement & health benefits & a poorly managed pension fund. Binney Park has become an eyesore. The Byram pool is a disgrace. The school buildings are old & need upgrades. If you travel to Westchester, you will see their parks are full of beautiful ball fields, pools & clean, modern facilities. Greenwich people always think we are the best, but in reality, we’re not.

    • red herring

      Greenwich PEOPLE are actually far better than Westchester people. All you have to do is sit next to a bunch of gum-snapping loudmouthed referee hecklers from Rye or Larchmont at an AAU basketball game to come to that conclusion very quickly.

      • Riverside Chick

        Agree 100%!!!!!!

      • housecat

        I agree with that 100%, too. And i would extend that to certain towns in FF county to the east (mentioned in this comment stream, btw).

        • housecat

          ….maybe without the gum-snapping, in fairness. But: a whole lot of attitude… not a lot to back it up.

        • greenITCH

          yeah we are all so fking great …. same demographics .. many in same careers etc etc … Winged foot = Stanwich same with the yacht clubs and pool clubs etc etc

      • Yeah, those Westchester people, what a bunch of yahoos. Every last one of them.

        I’m drawing the line here. No more listening to anything composed by Aaron Copland.

    • hmmm

      first of all leave the byram pool out of it…it was a residential pool that came with the house that was donated to the town which then became the town pool…..we shouldn’t have one and if the JLOG wants one they should fund the entire pool, maintenance, and life guards in perpetuity….

      just to enlighten all as to how bad it really is keep in mind that the 800 or so teachers pensions are funded by the state not the responsibility of the town of greenwich now WHERE IS ALL OF THE MONEY GOING?!

  15. Walt

    Dude –
    Where is all the money going? To the politicians, that Francis carries around in his pocket, like so many nickels and dimes. To the featherbed no show jobs, like Lee Mazzilli hand out like candy. To union pensions, so the Wop’s can retire to Cos Cob at 45 years old, and then charge us a fortune for a snow plow.

    The Greenwich infrastructure is lagging a community of our means. The school issue does need to be fixed, and I think people will consider other towns because of it. I had a friend who chose Westport ( and he isn’t even a Jew) over Greenwich because of the schools, and he could have afforded Greenwich.

    Our downtown is empty. Only one rub and tug. What is up with that?

    And we need to make sure we take care of the children, and they are appropriately entertained. What could be funnier than a dead baby? A dead baby in a clown suit!! Do we have any of those? NO!! Well maybe in your basement, but that doesn’t count.

    Anyhows, what is tomorrow’s theme? Priest and Rabbi jokes? I got a million of them!! Incest? Pedophiles? Give me a heads up when you get a chance.

    Your Pal,
    Walt

    • BONO

      As a former Rye resident, I will never return to Rye. I moved & years ago.
      The Rye taxes are at least 3 times the amount for the same price home. The services are a fraction of Greenwich too. The Rye Milton firehouse needed public funding in order to be renovated. The public library is funded solely by the friends of the Rye library (private citizens). They have worse funding problems than Greenwich, most of Rye tax dollars fund other NY towns.

      People move from Westchester to Greenwich. Its rare you have the reverse.

      Greenwich has one of the best libraries in New England ( 2nd only to Boston Public Library). IMO -Greenwich Public Schools are much better than Rye’s. If you wish your child to be taught to the standard because that’s what the ratings require – go to Rye, if you want your child to have an option to take a plethora of High level (such as Advanced Learning Programs, AP Classes) choose Greenwich. Do you want access to: boat moorings, spectacular beaches, islands, 18 hole golf course, Audubon center, Save the Sound programing, public sailing lessons, boys/girls club, YMCA, YWCA, Boy scout land, Simmons estate land, multiple tennis courts, excellent restaurants, top shopping, huge variety of housing options, multigenerational residents, multiple ice skating venues… You cannot beat Greenwich – no other town in this area offers all these services for these low taxes.

      For those who are seeking a pool. Join the Greenwich Boys Girls club – a year round membership is a few hundred dollars. A (summer only) public pool membership in Rye is triple these costs.

      Its unfortunate the Greenwich papers care to highlight the negatives when Rye has the same. Example – The Rye High School is built on top of swamp land (sound familiar) except they (IMO) have it worse – whenever it rained, the Rye football field looked more like a lake than a field (including geese). Racial imbalance exists there too – big difference between Milton Elementary & Midland Street School.

      Rye is a lovely town, but not at all better than Greenwich.

      • housecat

        Thanks (seriously, no snark) for adding that perspective. I think families move from the city without knowing what is really in store for them once here – unless they grew up in a certain town, and happen to move back. We first moved to Westport from the city ourselves. Looks pretty, has good schools, and you get more house for the money. What we didn’t count on was the multi-year wait time for RR parking. No Biggie, right? Wrong. The spouse left at 5:40 every morning to get one of the coveted day spots, and returned at around 9:00 every night (work sched). If you aren’t Stepford-inclined, good luck with your social life. No playdates for your kids, either. I felt like I literally time-traveled back to High School. At 30? I don’t think so, ladies. GTFU. Soooo glad we moved here, even with less house for the dough, etc. That said, GGal and others have raised excellent questions about town infrastructure and about where our money is going.

        PS: not that we shouldn’t start working on things, but keep in mind that NYC parks and public spaces have had serious $$$$ poured into them over the last 15years (some public, some private). Anything looks kind of small and even shabby by comparison. I remember that feeling well.

      • greenITCH

        1 – sorry but opinions are like Arse holes and everyone has one ., yeah
        2 – the Greenwich library is largely funded privately and open to ANYONE
        3- IYO the schools are the same … ?!? Rye is a top 50 in the nation are u smoking crack, Greenwich HS isn’t even top 50 in the state ?
        4 – are you really comparing the boy and girls club that caters to Greenwich’s 20 % minority population to the Rye golf club and pool ? that place is a pseudo CC as far as amenities and is a Bargain

        I wish our firehouses and police station left it to private funding perhaps then the money would be spent more wisely … Greenwich police station with marble floors etc .. what a joke

        • Incognito

          Greenwich library actually 75% town funded.

        • housecat

          As I’ve said before, GW isn’t perfect. However, if you dislike literally everything about it, I don’t understand why you would choose to live here. As for the people, maybe you’re hanging out with the wrong crowd. Wait – by any chance, are you a realtor in Darien?

  16. Greenwich Gal

    This town is MISMANAGED! The old Cronies and Cos Cob Mafia that runs the town are taking advantage of high earners too busy to pay attention. We are paying dearly for the “cushy do as little as possible” jobs of town employees and their pension funds. It is painfully obvious and looking at our slate of candidates – it is not going to change anytime soon.

    • Walt

      GG –
      Agree 100%. I read today that Tesio has been a politician since 18. That is a big part of the problem. Politics was not meant to be a career. We must have term limits. Bill Clinton, Harry Reed, and Charlie Rangel, have all gotten RICH being politicians. To name but a few. That is not the way it was meant to be, and it must be stopped.
      I will vote for anybody but Tesio after learning he is a career politician. Greenwich has deep problems that are not being addressed by our politicians. The voters need to make that clear, and be more active in making their voices heard.
      Anyhows, you know what I really wonder about? What present do you get for a dead baby? A dead puppy!!
      Your Pal,
      Walt

  17. Mickster

    Further to previous comments on this blog, has there ever been an analysis done as to why the size of Fairfield budget is half of Greenwich budget for a town the same size population?

  18. Greenwich Gal

    Simple Mickster -The closer you get to NYC the closer you get to NYC prices.

    • Mickster

      GG,
      Let’s get serious for a minute. Someone in our government must at some stage compared what we are spending versus what Fairfield are spending. How the student populations/ teacher ratios/school administration size compare. What our pension liabilities compare..etc etc Please tell me it’s come up somewhere in conversations. What conclusions were drawn? Where are we going wrong?

  19. Greenwich Gal

    I think we should get CF to get a petition started to change the Charter of the town of Greenwich so we can install a new form of government. One that is more in line with a modern city. This 16th century model handed down from Puritan Meeting Houses is no longer functioning. Greenwich is no longer a teeny hamlet on an Indian trail even though our system of governance remains the same.

  20. Tired of the nonsense

    For the amount of staff parks and rec has,you’d think our parks would look much better!
    As for schools – yes, they need cosmetic upgrades and some need more extensive renovation. Problem is that the district has 7 max every summer to do work, from July 1st (when the new budget starts and they get capital) to a few days before school opening, which is late August.
    Thats not enough time to do a lot of work. They’ve gotten all the mechanicals in good working order and they are slowly going through and doing bathrooms, window upgrades, etc but the major stuff will never happen. Why? Because kids would have to move out of the school for 1.5-2 years to get it done. And the second you mention modulars, dispersement, etc, everyone suddenly loves their school just the way it is and says nevermind, we don’t need a new school, we don’t need new ceilings, wider hallways, etc. Everyone wants newer schools until they realize they will be inconvenienced by it.

  21. Anonymous

    I like Rye bread.

  22. South of Village

    I know a lot of people in Rye….never heard that the schools are better than any of the top half of Greenwich schools, and high school is too far out for most young families to plan for. They move to Rye for the commute. That’s a bubble waiting to burst because the wait list for parking is 10 years and you will stand in the vestibule every day, because the Greenwich people got all the seats. Greenwich taxes are 1/3 of Westchester because we have a much higher Grand List per capita, greater commerical tax revenue, and lower public school enrollment per capita vs Westchester. My observation is that people with $3mm plus homes in Rye quickly tire of the public schools and go to Rye Country Day or Greenwich private schools. They say that the public schools were overrated. Test scores don’t tell you how good a school is, they only tell you about the genetic abilities of the kids inside that school, and how much test prep goes on. Big complaint about Rye public schools is that its all test prep and no higher broader learning. Greenwich is far prettier than Rye. Compare Tod’s Point to Playland Park. Rye has nice clubs and I belong to one, but Greenwich wins on that front too. Rye’s moving up the scale just like northern Riverside because dual income families are obsessing about the commute. Best thing Greenwich can do is lobby for more express trains, tell P&Z to bolster new construction (permanent increase in Grand List), and get Hartford to lower the tax rate. That would be a virtuous cycle.

    • housecat

      Ah yes, that’s one thing I didn’t mention earlier in my Westport comment: tutoring and test prep. It was pervasive. Another thing that was hugely popular amongst parents was to get their child designated as having a “special need.” That way, the school was obligated to provide the student with extra instruction. There was an article related to that (or some lawsuit by yet another parent) in the local paper every single day. How odd that a town with such a small population would have so many special-needs and learning disabled students in its public school system. What are the odds of that, I wonder? Are those students’ CMT scores counted with the rest, or are they excluded? Now, maybe every single one them has a legitimate need, but given the sheer number of them, it seemed like many people were trying to game the system. (Purely my opinion, and we all know what GreenItch has to say about those…)

      • Tellin It like It is

        It’s a Jewish thing. I deal with many Jewish families in Westchester and NYC and they get their kids ‘tested’ and designated as having ADD or ADHD etc etc and then get extra time for tests etc etc extra tuition etc etc – it’s been going on for years up and beyond college. Scam.

      • housecat

        Just to be clear: It never occurred to me to link what I observed with ethnic or religious background. And there are tons of goyim in Westport, FYI.

        • Riverside Chick

          Yes , they are held back then “special Ed” -When their kids go to college, I’m sure the parents still handle the homework/papers. Helicopter parents at their worst!!!! (Then the kids go to rehab)

    • Anonymous

      SofVillage……how remarkable that in your list of solutions—not one of the items includes SPENDING LESS as way to keeping taxes low. Nope—you want to construct and develop even more of our “pretty” Greenwich area to increase the Grand List—when Greenwich already has the highest GL in the state…and probably in the top 3 or 5 in the country! I know its a novel concept but we have 60k people who already manage to spend ANNUALLY $500 million AND we have nearly $230 million in debt, because, gee, we still need to SPEND MORE than our magnificent GL provides. The Northeast (NY, CT, NJ) slides into the abyss with thinking like you and your fellow big spenders. It explains why we are losing jobs by the buckets in this area.

  23. Greenwich Gal

    There is nothing “Jewish” about it. There are lots of people out there trying to game the system. Education is expensive. High Quality education is even more expensive. It is not always about the peers around a student – that certainly is a reflection of a community but not about the talent of the educators at hand. There is no substitute for a great teacher who takes the time and patience to explain and demonstrate complicated matters to young minds. The problem is that it does take time and time costs money. Unfortunately, teachers in this country are not paid very well and our education system reflects that. If we revered teachers and education – as we should – we would have more competition for teaching positions and have a much better pool of applicants. The great teachers I have had taught because of their passion for learning and didn’t worry about the money. Unfortunately, many quit, discouraged and burned out. Finland has the best education system in the world primarily because teachers in Finland are highly respected and to be a teacher you have to graduate in the TOP % of your class and you are compensated at the very top as well. Most high school and elementary teachers in the US usually graduate in the mid to lower percentages of their class GPA- go figure.

    • Riverside Chick

      I’m going to open house at GHS tonight for my 4 th and last child there. I have always been impressed by the amazing teachers there- I don’t care what the building looks like-the teachers are fantastic!

    • Toonces

      GG – I believe that Finland also does not have teacher’s unions

  24. South of Village

    sorry it came across as big spending. I’m against spending and I think public pensions, etc are all egregious. the grand list is big but that’s the starting point. as people like eddie lampert leave, and if not replaced by a new tax base (like nice new homes for example), then the tax rate will go up. A higher tax rate would crush greenwich real estate. P&Z is making us uncompetitive as a destination for fresh capital in the form of small business, restaurants, and new home construction. So low spending, and low tax rates, but attract a large tax base

  25. Yardbird

    Counted 4 signs today stuck in the ground
    “Stanwich School Open House”

    Still none for GA or Brunsiwck

    🙂

    • Toonces

      Just wondering – Why do you dislike the Stanwich School Yardbird?

      • Yardbird

        I don’t dislike it
        I was adding to a comment quite a bit higher on this post…
        About the disparity between the private schools in town and their desirability and enrollment strength.
        It’s a lot like the private clubs…there are a few within reach, others have a multi year waiting list.
        That’s all 🙂

    • Yardbird, that’s because Stanwich is new, and only expanding its grades as the students advance. There’s really no comparison between two schools that have maxed out decades ago and a young, growing one. I hear great things about Stanwich from parents with children there – I myself have grown children and don’t know anyone at Stanwich so I have no dog in this fight but really: reaching out for new students for an expanding school is hardly a sign of difficulties.

      • Yardbird

        Woods finally made a birdie!
        USA!

        Hey Chris,
        Stanwich is doing its thing.
        I really don’t give a hoot

        Just pointing it out
        Hopefully they can balance their budget and get the kids into great schools.

        RH was sweet BTW
        Won the long drive (316 up the hill)
        Hole no. 5

        Didn’t need your laser scope after all, because I brought my own 🙂