Letter: Time to look at other options for schools, county
The storm of the past week has broached a long-standing tradition in Gloucester County regarding the development of the county and school system’s capital needs for the long term. With the loss of Page Middle School literally as a school (it should not be restored), the taxpayers have some very hard decisions to come up with by September of this year, the beginning of the 2011-2012 school year.
With a continued declining school population, the ability to merge the sixth grade within the existing elementary schools may be an option. The need to build a new elementary/middle school camps to the east or north of the Court House may be another option. The 2010 Census has provided the government the knowledge that the population is by already approved development tracks moving to the above directions.
At the same time, as revenue is becoming harder to come by with the lack of business and building, the government now needs to combine like departments and move these functions to the Page Middle School site. My suggestion is to turn the site into a transportation center by combining all county, utility and school assets at this center. Additionally, combining building and grounds along with the development of a central receiving and distribution site would increase monetary saving and enhancement of management control over the now-split functions of like departments’ needs for the long term.
The "reality" of fiscal responsibility is now on the front burner. Facing the situation head on, with the least amount of long-term debt and known increased taxes, has now become a major decision by placing all political ramifications aside.
Gloucester Point, Va.