And the MISA saga continues

I know I dropped my wallet in here SOMEWHERE

I know I dropped my wallet in here SOMEWHERE

GT reports, two weeks after a FWIW reader did, that groundwater seepage has “slowed” construction of the money orchestra pit and hence, the rest of the project.

This is a separate issue from the soil contamination problems, yet to be reported anywhere but here, but it’s coming.

Hold on to your checkbook.

15 Comments

Filed under MISA

15 responses to “And the MISA saga continues

  1. Any and all Town Employees who approved this travisty should be held accountable.
    Emotion for the Arts is understandable whoring professional “expertise” is not.
    The citizens need protection, elected officials deseve real advice.

  2. Once

    One of the benefits of being a Town employee is you’re never “held accountable”.

  3. CatoRenasci

    At some point this will all come home to roost. The taxpayers will revolt with their feet. The Town employees will see their defined benefit pension plans go the way of Detroit’s. The schools system will collapse as even the middle class abandons it. And pigs will fly.

    When something can’t continue it won’t, but it will go on and on a lot longer than any rational person would expect before complete collapse.

    The disaster that is MISA just goes on and on. And the RTM will continue to vote for it.

    We should really start holding public officials who lie about the cost of projects financially accountable for the cost overruns.

  4. loveablewhackjob

    Too late. Our checkbooks are gone. So are our children’s.

  5. Greenwich Taxpayer

    No compromise was the mantra of the frenzied mob that yelled for MISA, including Leslie Moriarty, now on the MISA Building Commitee, Livvy Floren and Lile Gibbons. I wonder what will happen when the thing is finished, at a cost of $100 million and the koffer dam bursts spewing toxic waste on the Greenwich Symphony and High School students. Peter Tesei, the BET and the RTM majority share the blame. So much for low and predictable tax increases…

    • loveablewhackjob

      MISA won’t be finished, that’s not the problem.

      The problem is BOE installed non-compliant PCB encapsulation without developing a Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan. The rain falling into the pit is mingling with the ground water (known to contain PCBs) seeping into the pit. It is all being pumped into our sewer and storm water systems, and thence into Long Island Sound. EPA fines for this kind of shenanigans range up to $25,000 a day, dating back to the start of construction in 2011.

      Additionally, TOG is required to clean up the PCBs to Clean Water Act standards (less than 1 part per million), on our own nickel. Agreements with EPA, brokered by The MISA Building Committee, made us financially responsible for all PCB remediation regardless of who put the PCBs there in the first place, where those PCBs went, or when it happened.

      BOE then selected the “minimal” “bifurcated” AECOM PCB remediation plan, which left PCBs in the MISA foundation, under the fields, on neighboring properties, and in Long Island Sound at levels ranging up to more than 1000 parts per million.

      Remediation cost estimates now exceed a billion dollars.

      That’s the problem.

      • Aw shucks, we’ll just use those famous low-interest rates FF and friends are so excited about and bond the thing out. A billion? Big deal – nothing is too good for our students.

        • loveablewhackjob

          Actually, that’s a bit of a problem, also.

          We have bonding authority up to $1.2 billion. We have outstanding bonds of around $100-$150 million. However, the Town failed to disclose pending claims regarding MISA when it issued the bonds at those famously low interest rates, so they will likely be recalled.

          The PCB remediation liability will cause the interest rate on new bonds to skyrocket.

          GHS will be closed forever. A billion dollars won’t be enough to bring it back to the point where it can ever be used again. We will need additional funds to build new high schools.

          I have been told other Greenwich schools were also built on PCBs, and BOE is aware of this fact, but has not disclosed it pursuant to its “gag rule”.

          There are no remediation cost estimates I am aware of for the other schools.

          We will have to raise taxes to pay off the bond obligations. It will take more than 25 years to remediate the GHS MISA PCB fiasco. 50 years is considered, by some, optimistic.

          It will be interesting to see if BOE and PTA insist on MISAs for each of the new high schools.

  6. Anonymous

    This is an outrage. No common sense. They all wanted bigger, grander, more expensive. Greenwich is rich and the children deserve this. The blame is spread around to numerous elected officials and town employees. All members of the BOE who refused to limit the size even Sherr and vonBraun who are suppose to be the Republicans on the board refused to stop the orchestra pit. Then theirs Tesei who twisted the BETs arm to get it approved the first time. Remember the Rtm short circuited debate when vonKeyserling ( who loves nothing better then spending your tax dollars) demanded a straw vote to intimidate anyone speaking against MISA. But the piece de resistance was when BET Republicans got scared and said no, good ol boy Mike Mason flipped flopped sending it to the RTM where everyone knew it would pass yet again. This is a debacle the likes of which Greenwich has never seen.

  7. Anonymous

    CF—you are always one step ahead of the mainstream media. Congrats on the get.

    This project is a cluster fuck and we all know it. All those involved in the decision should be fired–and that includes all the PTA heads (New Lebanon/Hamilton/North Street/etc Presidents—that includes you). I can’t wait to hear how the BOE reacts to this news given all the other important projects and programs they are talking about that have huge funding implications.

    • CatoRenasci

      The BOE will haw and hem and come back to the BET and the RTM for more money. On the last MISA extra request, it was only 118-92 in favor, which means that there was quite a bit of opposition (your writer included). Given the skepticism in the discussion surrounding that vote in some of the committees (it was 7-5 in Finance), any new big chunks for MISA may well get a more jaundiced reception.

  8. Greenwich Taxpayer

    Jaundiced reception? Ha. The cry will be that we have a hole in the ground and we can’t stop now. The RTM will approve additional appropriations, just as they rubber stamp all appropriations asked for by the BOE and BET. And don’t forget the PTA who will come out in force screaming that the children should not be penalized for past problems. Greenwich has embarked on a Superfund cleanup and just wait till the bill comes in. You ain’t seen nothing yet!

  9. AJ

    Greenwich needs to enlist the aid of philanthropists like Michelle Marie who will trade billions for the privilege of having their names engraved on a bronze plaque. Since it’s for the children, even Pajama Boy might help.

  10. Anonymous

    Will there be a hair salon?