Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Watuppa Heights Meeting Tonight

An important reminder, courtesy of Tom Paine:

Mayor Correia's new plan for Watuppa Heights will be reviewed by a council subcommittee tonight at 5:15 in the City Council Chambers at City Hall.

Remember what Correia wants to do:

1. Build at least 60 units at the current Watuppa Heights site....he said in 2002 he was going to build 26 single family homes there. He was the one that made a change to the original bill in early 2002 for 26 single family homes. What happened to his plan????

2. Build an additional 20 units off site on current city owned vacant land. Where is this land?? No answers yet!!

3. We!! Yes we!! have to come up with at least $4million. Where is Mayor Correia going to come up with $4million. I do not want to hear maybe from HUD, or maybe Community Development, we want to know where!!

4. In 2002 he said the 26 single family home plan was a done deal. What happened to the done deal. We were hoodwinked!

People- try to make this meeting.


Anonymous said...

It isn't what the Mayor wants to do, it is what the state wants the city to do!

Anonymous said...

That is simply put, sounds a little naive.

shamrock said...

The post or the plan?

Anonymous said...

Both :)

shamrock said...

Well, it is addressing the plans of Bob Correia, and there is always an inherent naivete in his plans.

General said...

The meeting lasted almost 2 hours. It is a shame that Mayor Correia's administration negotiated the new deal, signed the document, was requested by the council to send someone to the meeting to explain why he did all that and just like the LNG meeting he did not go to the meeting or send anyone.

This new plan is extremely confusing. The representative from the state seemed to contradict herself over and over.

Councilors pointed out that the agreement states at least 60 units on site. The state person said that can been changed after you approve it.

I am not kidding!!

Anonymous said...

was he at a school budget meeting instead? He couldn't make the governor's meeting to discuss the state budget cuts even though every mayor was summoned.

what is his reason for not attending- when we may end up paying $4million dollars??? Where is our representation from his 30 years in the state house that was going to be such a benefit to the city>???

General said...

Both Mayor Correia and Corporation Counsel were at the Venus DeMilo for Senator Menard's function.

Corp Counsel then showed up at the hearing late, but had no answers!

Anonymous said...

What could possibly be so important at a MENARD FUNCTION????

Anonymous said...

Hey Shamrock, have you been a cheap shot artist all your life or is it something recent as a result of your candidate for Mayor being defeated?

Anonymous said...

I don't know about Shamrock but I unfortunately voted for correia and I'm not happy with him at all.
The truth hurts Shamrock I guess that is what anon is afraid of - the fact that you still have the right to say what you want on your own blog!

Anonymous said...

No kidding someone is pissed about Correia being at some stupid time. People are tired of their tax dollars being misappropriated while the city schools are floundering. What the ****?!

Anonymous said...

You should be pissed about the fact the mayor only acts on things that make him look good he doesn't give a crap about you or me!

shamrock said...

Anon 9:46 -

I had no vested interest in any of the mayoral candidates. I did prefer most of them to Bob Correia because I felt that many of them would have done a better job. I still feel that many of them would be doing a better job right now.

One of my biggest problems with Bob is that he has no interest in government transparency (which to me is a giant red flag that things are happening that he doesn't want the public to know about) and the Watuppa project highlights that. He aided the city council in violating open meeting laws

so of course I am suspicious of his intentions with this project.

Anonymous said...

Shamrock, I watched the most recent city council meeting with the discussion about charging Tiverton for one time fees etc.

It was covered in the paper but if you watch it, there is a big discusiion prior to that and during questioning the city administration reveals that they actually found 700k in the budget that they want to spend!!! They are asked why we didn't know about this 700k windfall and the reply was oh it just happened. Finally it was revealed it was found 3 weeks ago, So if the question did not come up they would have just spent the money on what they wanted!

These are the manuevers that make us suspicous.

shamrock said...

I did see it. Correct me if I am wrong but was the $700,000 coming from property assessments? Because it is not palatable that we have this sudden extra money based on increased property values.

Councilor Hague agrees with our suspicions since he accused the administration/mayor of padding the budget for next year at the meeting.

Did you see the finance committee discussion regarding the transfer of money to the mayor so he can continue to pay a Boston law firm to put liens on properties and recover back property taxes? Another reason not to pay Arthur Frank $80,000/year.

Anonymous said...

I believe so but would have to watch it again. My point is why was this not mentioned in the paper? If the ability to bring this up on blogs was not there it would never be known , just as the city council would not know about it if that specific line of questioning was not taken.
Just makes you wonder what is really going on with all the budget shortfalls.

Anonymous said...

Newly christened Fall River Harbor Master Roland Proulx

Newly christened Fall River Harbor Master Roland Proulx said he hopes to have discussions with the Coast Guard about the city securing their own oil spill boom.
“We are usually the first ones on the scene and it would be great to have something to work with,” said Proulx.

E-mail Jay Pateakos at

I've never heard of him, but a few phone calls revealed the following:

a) He collects his City Retirement.
b) He still works police details for the city.
c) His wife works for the police department
d) He has been getting paid as an Assistant Harbormaster
e) He provides expert consulting to the ZBA (zoning board of review)
f) He runs a full time business consulting for insurance companies:
Roland Proulx , Crashtech Accident Forensics
PO Box 230
Fall River, MA 02722-0230
Providing accident reconstruction & related services to insurance companies, attorneys & municipalities. Our experts consists of current & former police officers, first responders & other experts with specialized training. We offer rapid and reliable response nationwide. Ask us about our competitive Flat-Rate Mail-In Service.
g) He's attended most, if not every Correia function.

I guess this would be considered waterfront development.

General said...

With the staff the mayor has there was no excuse to not show up to this meeting.

But, someone did show up! Atty Frank....who had nooooo answers!

Anonymous said...

Was he asked any questions???

General said...

During the meeting Tom Collins kept telling the council that he, the mayor and the corporation counsel were at the negotiation meetings regarding Watuppa Heights. Close to the end of the meeting Arthur Frank came in, just arrived from Joan Menard's time.

They brought him to the table and was asked a few questions that he could not answer. It was as if he never participated in the negotiations. Plus he pointed out that he did not sign the MOA.

Councilor Hague said he had more questions but said forget it, in disgust.

The full council meeting on this will be interesting.

Anonymous said...

I watched it on tv, what ajoke
Lund was correct when he said the citizens of FR have spoken and an agreement was made- but the agreement they are being asked to vote on is completely different.
Frank also said he reviewed it as recently as april?? why didn't he sign it?? they worked on a draft but did not let the council see
it ??

It's nice to see the councilors were there and asking questions except for pat casey was she at the menard time as well??


Anonymous said...

Here it is finally shamrock

The Herald News finally picked up on the 700k surprise windfall in the budget:

Fall River — At a time of nearly universal financial crisis, city officials seemed to have found a pot of tax gold.

Unexpectedly, department heads told the City Council last week that new growth tax revenues from the assessors office came in more than $700,000 above what they projected.

But the council, asked this week to use those funds for long-term school borrowing that Treasurer Dan Patton consolidated this spring, skeptically approved the windfall for the debt.

The vote was 5-4.

“There was an extra $700,000 in the budget for new growth and not one councilor was told about it?” Councilor Raymond E. Hague asked.

“We found out about this three weeks ago,” Acting City Administrator Alan A. Silva said.

“If you don’t approve the money, it’s not in the budget to pay these bills? I don’t get it,” Councilor Thomas F. Kozak said.

When Silva said he didn’t know at budget time about Patton’s plan for paying the long-term debt, Kozak suggested the administrator “get in the loop.”

Patton paraphrased his written explanation that his intention was to pay the $688,380 debt service — solely interest on this first year of a 20-year bond — by drawing 50 percent from one-time stabilization accounts and finding nearly $350,000 in budgeted accounts.

If the full amount were available in the budget, he would pay the entire interest on some $33.5 million in mostly school building costs from available funds, he said.

Asked to explain the windfall, Assessor Pamela Davis told the council the lion’s share came from business personal property taxes the city obtained through a five-year program “re-measuring and enlisting properties.” Many of those taxable items were not on the books, she said.

She said the city had spent additional funds to track personal property, and when questioned by Hague said she was not directed to take those initiatives.

“We really didn’t expect anything to this magnitude, especially with this market,” Davis said.
Patton, questioned afterward, said during the budget process new growth was estimated at $300,000 to $400,000. The new tax revenue budgeted was $449,153, an amount Hague said he questioned as low during budget reviews.

Patton said the new growth needs to be certified by the state Department of Revenue in the next few weeks, but he estimates it’s $1.3 million to 1.4 million.

Hague said Patton’s action to combine short-term borrowing into long-term at favorable rates “makes sense. ... I don’t agree with the administration’s plan to fund it,” he said, noting city jobs that have been cut back.

No councilor mentioned that the school department is in the process of cutting $3.5 million in budget shortfalls.

Councilor Cathy Ann Viveiros and Linda M. Pereira supported Patton’s recommendation. “I’m prepared to support it. It was an opportune time to convert it and get the best rates and terms, and that’s exactly what happened,” Viveiros said. “The intention was good.”

She said the council should discuss the new growth figures at another meeting when the administration is slated to provide its quarterly update.

Council President Joseph D. Camara said he had requested that update with the mayor’s office and was told their report would be ready for the next council meeting on Oct. 28.

Caesar is dead said...

Regardless of the plan, it's simply a bad idea to put only 26 houses in that space. Cities need concentrated houses that best makes use of the infrastructure and increases the tax base. Leave houses for the suburbs. We should be putting 100-200 smaller units in taller buildings. That's what we need.

Anonymous said...

Public housing BELONGS in Fall River. Do you think we're going to let it into Little Compton? Anyway, there's not much difference between the people in the projects and everyone else in Fall River.

Anonymous said...

The schools are up for grabs now and Karam is foaming at the mouth to get the Highland School. Word is there is a watchdog group forming to keep an eye on these transactions.