So reading today’s Lawrence Eagle Tribune, I find a picture on page 3.
It is titled “Rock Show”. It is not about music videos or some new fangled theater act.
It is a photo op. Simply put.

One complaint about this photo op is that it takes place at a time when the beneficiaries of the largesse are unable to attend. Or…. Looking at the photo, maybe THEY were.

A new park was created in Downtown Methuen.

It has a long history of being funded, then the funding was “moved” to more pressing issues, then being funded again only to repeat the money moves. I have lost track of the number of times and the total amount of money sent to Methuen to clean up this site and do “something” proactive with it.

The site borders the Spicket River downtown and could be a really nice place to stop and view the River. Especially if one were tracing the Millionaire Walk.
However, the river bank was never cleaned up. It is bolstered by numerous oil tanks, ostensibly filled with concrete. A very lovely sight.

One politician who voted numerous times to accept the millions that flowed into the city, apparently was at the site for the first time and noted the old dock still precariously perched on the island in the river. The dock has been there for perhaps 80 plus years. The pol, who is between 66 and 68 had never noticed it.

I am told there were also comments about how much money was sent and how much was used for this enhancement. These questions from someone who should have those numbers on the tips of his fingers.

The article states that the money received was from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, abbreviated ARRA (Pub.L. 111-5), often referred to as the “Stimulus bill”.
American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 was an act making supplemental appropriations for job preservation and creation, infrastructure investment, energy efficiency and science, assistance to the unemployed, and State and local fiscal stabilization, for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2009, and for other purposes.

I guess the key is the last phrase “for other purposes.”

The primary objective for ARRA was to save and create jobs almost immediately.
Secondary objectives were to provide temporary relief programs for those most impacted by the recession and invest in infrastructure, education, health, and ‘green’ energy. The term, infrastructure, typically refers to the technical structures that support a society, such as roads, water supply, sewers, electrical grids, telecommunications, and so forth, and can be defined as “the physical components of interrelated systems providing commodities and services essential to enable, sustain, or enhance societal living conditions.”

The Act also included many items not directly related to economic recovery such as long-term spending projects and other items specifically included by Congress (?pork?: ed note.) .

So, as you well could have guessed, how much did we spend and what “stimulus” was created?
How many jobs were saved or created with this money?

Okay, so it was an infrastructure project.
How does an unmarked park in the center of a nonfunctional city downtown support,enable, sustain, or enhance societal living conditions.

What could the “other purposes” be?

I surely would have liked to see the City publish the costs to “build” this park.
The steps taken to “clean” the contaminated site.
Who thought it would be a good idea to move large rocks from somewhere and call them seats.
[Have you ever sat on a rock? Very cool...especially on your buttocks.]
Not very comfortable. Great place for children to play.

As always, I welcome your comments.

admin posted at 2011-11-30 Category: Uncategorized

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