Greenwich Democrats plant story in Businessweek

Drew Mazullo Memorial Pool, Byram

Drew Mazullo Memorial Pool, Byram

Cos Cobber points out this story from BloombergNews/Businessweek: “Mean ol’ Republicans refuse to go long on borrowing despite our infrastructure “crumbling”. Notice the picture of the drained Byram pool, a pet Democrat project. Also notice the ice. Ice in July, or a recent photo?

Home to billionaires such as Ray Dalio and Thomas Peterffy, the top-rated town returned to credit markets in 2007 to sell bonds after a 74-year, self-imposed hiatus. It operates under a policy of limiting debt backed by its general fund to maturities of five years or less. The approach reduces interest payments while constraining the scope of projects that can be done at once.

[Greenwich Democrats] point to aging structures like the Eastern Greenwich Civic Center, which the town acquired in 1966, and which has cracks in its facade and chunks of concrete missing from exterior walls. They also note the seaside Byram Shore Park, where town documents say the pool has a “continuous leak.”

From the Fox Butterfield is that you? Department*, the article notes that “Greenwich is among the nation’s wealthiest towns with a top credit rating, with $719,873 of taxable property per capita, according to Standard and Poor’s. The median figure for top-graded communities is $157,536.”

How’d that top credit rating come about? The article doesn’t say, which is funny, because one of the reporters on the Greenwich story, Ms. Michelle Kaske, recently penned an article, “Puerto Rico’s Borrowing Binge Could Rock the Muni-Market”. Guess she didn’t read it.

* NYT reporter Butterfield is the eponym for “The Butterfield Effect”, used to refer to a person who “makes a statement that is ludicrous on its face, yet it reveals what the speaker truly believes”, especially if expressing a supposed paradox when a causal relationship should be obvious. The particular article that sparked this was titled “More Inmates, Despite Drop In Crime” by Butterfield in the New York Times on November 8, 2004

13 Comments

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13 responses to “Greenwich Democrats plant story in Businessweek

  1. hmmm

    The pool should be abandoned or the junior league should commit to maintaining it in perpetuity or just stfu

  2. Cos Cobber

    the pool should be filled in this spring. its is indeed an embarrassment and eyesore and perhaps liability.

  3. The Bloomberg article indicates that Greenwich isn’t borrowing, and isn’t investing in infrastructure.

    It only takes 30 seconds to show the falsity of this assertion. This year Greenwich is in the middle of three massive projects: building a new high school auditorium ($30 million and counting), renovating the town’s nursing home (over $20 million), and building a new central fire house (over $20 million), not counting another $20 million or more every year on routine recurring items such as road paving, boilers and roofs for schools, etc. The current year’s capital budget is $66.3 million, and together with the following three years the four-year sum of capital spending is $275.1 million, as shown here: http://www.greenwichct.org/upload/medialibrary/669/Final_Capital_Budget_2013-2014.pdf

    This four year sum is a record, far greater than any other four consecutive years in the past, or in the future plan. Is this neglecting our capital assets?

    To finance this capital spending blowout, the Town last week…….made its largest borrowing ever. The Town borrows every January, and the recent borrowings were $130 million, rated AAA. http://finance.yahoo.com/news/fitch-rates-greenwich-ct-bonds-212900429.html

    So when the Democrats (and the ditzy media) say the Town isn’t borrowing, and isn’t investing in infrastructure, is there any thought at all behind these statements? Or is it just some kind of unthinking lefty Pavlovian instinct, when the topic of money comes up: b.b.b.b.b.borrow……sp.sp.sp.spend……..???????

  4. Midcountry momma

    Well, I guess if your friends decide they want to jump off the Empire State Building you should do the same. There’s a reason why Greenwich has a good credit rating – it is more fiscally conservative than other towns. The author needs a good lesson in cause and effect.

    Also, people in Greenwich might be wealthy but that’s generally because they subscribe to the philosophy that you don’t live beyond your means. So if you have the money to build a pool, or join a health club or country club then you get to enjoy a pool – if you don’t or don’t want to spend the money then you do without.

  5. Anonymous

    There was a time when our local Democrats stated that if we take advantage of all this cheap debt then we could spend less on operating expenses. SPEND LESS you say on operating? Well, it appears all talk since I have yet to read ONE Democratic proposal to spend less on operating expenses—which would mean, hhhmmm, cutting UNION personnel headcount or compensations. Nope, I know the true outcome—a new credit card for increased spending in ALL areas—limits are for chumps in the Dems book….I wonder do we have any examples of what could possibly happen with relentless spending beyond inflation???…lets see, San Jose, Chicago, Philadelphia, etc etc etc. Blah.

    • Don’t forget Hartford, which took the revenue from the new income tax and doubled the state payroll, while state population declined.

      • Anonymous

        Yip. No kidding. I guess we have our own phony Weicker to thank for that gem of an idea.

        • CatoRenasci

          Don’t forget the state income tax was a personal tax cut for Weicker, who is an heir to the Squibb fortune and most of whose income was dividends and interest, subject then to a 10% tax rate. His tax rate on most of his income went from 10% to 4%, a nice cut.