Well, I hate to say it but I’ve got to, “It’s about time!”
I love the fact that our citizens have come out of their coma and are actively participating in the political process.
Our city is beset with many ‘pleasant’ issues as Councilor Jones has said often in the past. Unfortunately, the sense of passion and urgency and even a sense of potential loss was all too often put aside as we endlessly argued over some long-term hemorrhaging issues or wrangled over minutiae. Most of the citizens realized how enjoyable and pleasant it was to live in Newburyport. It was easy to ignore long standing serious issues with the high quality of life present here.
“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining.”
-John F. Kennedy
It was also way too easy to put off making the tough decisions. I took this quote from one of the editorials present in the paper today. It is so true.
Things are rapidly changing in Newburyport and it is going to take putting up protections and doing long term planning to prevent the loss of our historic city.
So goes it with the schools. I hate to be a realist and let you all in on a little fact that putting in new schools and refurbished schools is more about protecting our equity, and our property values than it has anything to do with our rapidly decreasing student body. This is not being cynical. All those glorious electives that I had offered to me when I was in public school are still not going to be offered. Where’s the home economic classes, the civics classes and the shop class? What about electronics, etc. Will all that money produce high test scores and students ready to face this challenging world? Will we finally get foreign language taught in our elementary schools?
Pretty buildings don’t make smart students but it will jump up our property values and attract quality citizens who want the best for their children.
And it goes for why I support infrastructure improvement and why I support historic preservation restrictions in our city. New arrivals are here and are paying the high real estate prices and they are drawn by our historic seaport. As stated by Sandy Berkenbush, a realtor with Stone Ridge Properties in the May 22nd article, “Interest runs high for Port Homes”:
“I hear from prospective buyers that they are drawn by the historic charm of the city and that it offers a lot in the 21st century.”
Like JFK says, yes, things are looking good now but the best time to fix our schools is with this great deal at low interest rates. A perfect alignment of opportunities. The same goes with protecting our city, we need to do it as soon as possible before 3-5 Pine Street becomes the sad reality throughout our historic district!