Superintendent Towle announces retirement

Schools - General School Written by Webmaster   
Monday, 14 September 2009 22:26

Superintendent Towle announces retirement
By Scott O'Connell/STAFF WRITER [Wicked Local Westborough]
Thu Sep 10, 2009, 04:04 PM EDT

WESTBOROUGH - After to spending close to 40 years in education, including what will be five in her current position, Westborough Superintendent Anne Towle has announced her retirement.

“I had decided that when I first came to Westborough, I would give them five years,” said Towle. “I just had my 60th birthday and I thought it was time to retire.”

She informed the School Committee of her decision in August, according to chairman Karen Henderson, and made a school-wide announcement on Tuesday.


[Please read the full article, located at the Wicked Local Westborough web site -- webmaster]

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Arts festival offers Westborough residents a chance to find 'common' ground

Westborough Today - Recreation Written by Webmaster   
Monday, 14 September 2009 22:04

By Scott O'Connell/Gatehouse News Service
The MetroWest Daily News
Posted Sep 14, 2009 @ 12:01 AM

Anybody who thinks the gazebo at Bay State Commons Park has looked a bit empty should plan on heading downtown on Oct. 3.

The town's first arts festival, "Arts in Common" will be held at the park and the nearby Forbes Community Building, officials said. The event will feature more than 30 acts and groups and more than 30 vendors. The festival will be preceded by the dedication of Bay State Commons Park, which the town owns after signing the deed this summer.

The idea behind the event, said Lynn Watts, chairman of the Westborough Cultural Council, is that "everybody has arts in common."


Please read the full article, located at The MetroWest Daily News -- webmaster

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Where are Westborough taxes going?

Westborough Today - Opinions and Editorials Written by Len Mead   
Monday, 14 September 2009 21:42

By Len Mead

August 8, 2009

Seven years ago our property taxes were about 20% over the state average when I happily moved to Westborough. Now they are 60% higher – about $7,000 compared to the state average of about $4,100.

As some of you readers know, I left Newton then because liberals there seemed to think higher taxes were the solution to everything. They proposed the largest Prop 2 ½ tax over-ride in state history at that time -- $11 million forever -- to pay for exploding spending. As president of the Newton Taxpayers Association, we opposed the tax increase.

The tax over-ride battle pitted old against young, upper class against middle class, public unions against private workers and parents against everyone else. It was a nasty, unpleasant fight that tore the city apart. The tax hike won by 709 votes out of about 28,000 cast.

That same year in 2002, a Westborough Prop 2 ½ tax override was narrowly avoided only because Astra Zeneca unexpectedly expanded its production and inventory. Town spending increases were thus funded with Astra’s unanticipated tax revenues.

That left me free to stay out of politics and devote about three years to restoring Westborough’s 1720 Captain John Maynard house – a labor of love.

Here, however, the scary thing for the next 7 years was that our taxes rose relentlessly year by year without a Prop 2 ½ over-ride vote to focus us on the peril. And so for the last three years, you, Dear Reader, have had to put up with my columns pointing out the facts and the dangers of Westborough’s rising taxes. I have warned that if spending isn’t controlled to less than what Prop 2 ½ tax increases can fund, trends show our property tax bills may rise inexorably to double the state average in just another 10 years.

Many have agreed with my forewarnings that better spending control is critical to keeping Westborough affordable for everyone. Other readers have suggested that exploding tax growth is only what Westborough people want when they approve spending at Town meeting.

My judgment, however, is that Town Meeting has sadly just become a vehicle for public employees to pack the meeting and vote their own pay and benefit increases -- leaving the remaining 200-300 attendees to quibble about other important town affairs whose financial impact is less than 25% of our total spending.

Still others have suggested that people like me objecting to tax increases should just move out of Westborough. My answer to that is, Naaah – I’d rather stay. Where better to take a conservative stand than in one’s own community?

I’ll side with the (no-longer) silent majority of ‘Town Meeting’ citizens who have finally had enough of bloated, government spending and meddling and are demanding that their elected officials remember who votes for and pays taxes for government services.

Friends, higher taxes destroy jobs, destroy communities, and destroy families. Only by lowering taxes and controlling public spending does an economy grow and create private sector jobs. How depressing then that our state sales tax was just increased 25% -- in a recession!

Worse, there is a new state “local option” allowing local cities and towns like Westborough to pile on and add even higher taxes on hotels and restaurants. For communities choosing to raise meals and hotel taxes even more, this will be yet another job destroying action sure to chase people out of the town or the state in the current recession

According to the US Census, Massachusetts has grown less than 1% and actually lost population in 2 of the last 5 years from 2004 – 2008 while the country has grown over 10%. As a quick factoid, Texas has created more jobs last year with their low tax, pro-growth economy than all the other states put together.

So where are Westborough taxes going? Not down like they should, apparently, in this recession.

Soon we’ll have a town meeting where whoever attends may approve even more spending due to budget “shortfalls.” Town meeting attendees may also approve letting “the voters” decide to raise taxes at a ballot election over-riding Prop 2 ½ to pay for a proposed $30 million plus public safety complex. Yes, of course our police and fire departments need improved facilities. But is the only choice nothing -- or tax hike of $3,400 for the average residential Westborough taxpayer ($170 for the next 20 years)?

Folks, you know where I stand. But with such critical issues coming up – and the Bush tax cuts due to expire soon pushing our economy further into recession, where do you stand? Why not write this publication – pro or con – on whether you believe raising our taxes (to possibly 70% higher than the state average!) or controlling spending is in our best interests?

From experience, I can tell you that reducing spending growth will be much, much better than a tax override ballot fight.

Len Mead can be reached anytime at

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Westborough Woman's Club 2009 Kick Off - Pot Luck Supper

Westborough Today - Public Service Announcements Written by Webmaster   
Wednesday, 09 September 2009 12:08

The Westborough Woman's Club will kick off the new year with a pot luck supper and entertainment on Monday, September 14th.  New members are encouraged to attend the event and should call Judy at 508-870-1895 to reserve a spot. All reservations must be made in advance. Current members will be providing salads, main dishes and desserts for the evening.

The club will celebrate its ninety-third anniversary in November.  There are currently eighty-one members, and membership is open to any woman age eighteen and over from any town. Club members will conduct a donation drive this October for Abby's House, in recognition of Domestic Violence month.

Monthly meetings are held the second Tuesday of the month from October to April at the Evangelical Congregational Church in Westborough. For more information please contact Judy at 508-870-1895

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Second Annual Westborough Scouting Day - Sat Sep 12 2009

Recreation - Scouting in Westborough - General Information Written by Webmaster   
Tuesday, 08 September 2009 21:45


The second annual Westborough Scouting Day will be held on Saturday, September 12.  Boys and girls from kindergarten to twelfth grade can participate in demonstrations, see cooking demos, watch the monkey bridge being built, complete crafts and much more. The open event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Tufts Machine lot at 48 East Main Street. Registrations for Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts, grades 1-12, will be held at the event. Participating units include Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Venture Crew and Emergency Service Explorer Post.  The event is free, but donations for the Westborough Food Pantry will be collected.

Girl Scout registration for grades kindergarten to twelfth grade will be held on Sunday, September 13 from 6-7 p.m. Registration is twelve dollars for each girl and adult.  It will be held at the Evangelical Congregational Church at 8 Church St.  (Corner of Church at West Main St.)  Troop placement depends on leadership and availability. For information call Monica at 800-462-9100.

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