Germain’s tax plan ripped

Not everyone likes Councilor Mike Germain’s plan to tax dorm rooms.

Fox 25 ripped the plan—and Michael Germain—this morning.

“Stupid is an understatement.”

Actually…the crew ripped Worcester in general.

“Worcester’s a town with a tough reputation…it’s easy to poke fun at them for being a small city.  You pull stuff like this and you’re not helping.  There’s one thing Worcester has got going for them, and that’s their colleges and universities…”

“Just dumb.”



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12 responses to “Germain’s tax plan ripped

  1. Dan

    Fox 25 is absolutely right here. I’m a student at one of Worcester’s fine universities, and they’re basically the only “fine” things about Worcester. If you put a tax on dorm rooms, it’s not going to cost the schools a cent, it’ll simply be passed on to the students.

    The cost of college is already too expensive, why do I need another deterrent to come to Worcester? Thanks to my experiences here, there’s a roughly 0% chance I’ll stay in this shithole after I graduate. I live one road down and three roads over from my school, and there have been beatings, stabbings, and crime galore. There was a murder right across the street from my apartment, and this is supposedly one of the nicer parts of town.

    Students at Worcester colleges have to deal with the constant threat of crime against them. Our cars are broken into constantly, we’re at risk if we have to go anywhere after 10 o’clock at night, and the danger of sexual assault against women is ghastly high.

    As if it wasn’t enough to be under constant siege from the low-lifes of the city, we have nothing to take our minds off of it. It’s impossible to get anywhere without a car, and there’s virtually no public transit, the only movie theaters are miles away from residential areas, and there isn’t anything remotely interesting to do downtown unless you’re over 21. Coincidentally, if you ARE over 21, please go and visit any of the shady bars on Main Street. At least you can drink to forget that you’re in Worcester.

  2. Pingback: Stupid is an understatement | radioball dot net

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  4. Let’s tax beer consumption too!
    Germain’s got my vote in November!

  5. I don’t like it when Boston dumps on Worcester. Really you have to either live in Worcester or have grown up there to have a right to dump on Worcester. It’s just not right.

    Naturally it’s still okay for everyone everywhere to dump on Boston.

  6. Hey Dan,

    Can you give me a round about idea of what you are looking for from your off campus college experience? I am honestly curious. There are people in this city who want you guys to move here to go to school and then stay here as adults and work and start families and make Worcester your home. What would you say would make a student like you want to stay in the town they went to school in?

  7. Dan

    RE: Gabe

    To be honest, I probably came to Worcester more willing to stay in town after college than most. I grew up in southern New Hampshire, so I’m used to the weather, accents, people, and Red Sox, but what surprised me are the attitudes towards students here.

    We’re seen as carpetbaggers who just come in, mooch off the city for four years, and then walk off stage with our diplomas and right into a car out of town, and we’re definitely treated as such. They’re always levying more taxes against our schools, and as such us, and there’s always talk of the “unsavory element” student life brings.

    To be fair, most of us ARE carpetbaggers, mostly because there’s little incentive to stay. Worcester isn’t exactly a beacon of industry anymore, and unless you want a job at one of the universities or at one of the few major business on the shortlist (biotech companies, law firms, etc), there’s not a whole lot of money to be made.

    What needs to be clear is that WE are not mooching off the city, rather the city makes OUR lives harder. Worcester is home to two elite level institutions in Holy Cross and WPI, an incredibly good one in Clark, and a number of smaller, respectable colleges like Anna Maria, Assumption, plus a few entry level schools like Becker and Quinsigamond. By my rough count, there are at least 30,000 students going to school in Worcester, and the majority of them are from outside the city.

    These universities and colleges contribute immensely to the economy by bringing in boat-loads of young people, a number equal to at least a 5th of Worcester’s permanent population. Believe me, these people wouldn’t be here otherwise. We’re a huge boon to the community financially, with what we spend on food, clothes, housing, entertainment… Not to mention the amount we’re taxed on alcohol alone probably keeps at least a few roads paved, cops in uniform, or a school afloat.

    And that’s just us kids… Don’t forget what the actual institutions do, raising property values by buying up the land around them and improving it, providing academic resources for the community, the huge amount of community service done by student-groups like sports teams, fraternities, and sororities. We bring prestige to the city by having three of the top 80 schools in America, according to US News & World Reports (and they would be Holy Cross at 35, WPI at 71, and Clark at 80).

    And for all of this? We’re demeaned for holding raucous parties, but far-be-it from native Worcesterites to excuse a bunch of late-teens/twenty-somethings for wanting to enjoy our lives and time here in Worcester. We’re supposedly a leech on the community, even though we bring in millions of dollars to the local economy and a much needed injection of youthful vigor to this dreary place.

    I honestly have nothing against Worcester or its residents personally… but I have to walk 15 minutes to school on sidewalks coated with solid ice, almost the whole way, unless I want to walk in the roads, in which case I’ll be slaughtered by the masses of imbeciles who run red lights and breeze through stop-signs like they’re paid to do it. For me to stay here, I’d have to see a viable core of incredibly strong business, and there just aren’t a lot of opportunities out there.

    As far as raising a family here… If I somehow managed to find a job with a competitive salary, how about I just live in Wellesley or Needham and commute? There’s not a very strong art scene, music scene, theater scene, literature scene, or any kind of scene at all, and what little there is (get this) mostly comes from the universities and colleges. The public schools aren’t anything special, and it’s not a family friendly city by any measure.

    Maybe it’s all fine for people who grew up here, and that’s not a bad thing, but unless crime goes way down and culture goes way up, most of us will happily move away. But hey, why listen to us? The reaction will always be thus:


  8. SS

    Well said Dan.
    People in Worcester will NEVER see the reality that lies in front of them.

  9. James Madison

    Just because you picked “a bad neighborhood” to live in is your fault. Blame your neighbors, those other students, who make life unbearable for everyone else.
    Those so called prestigious schools also “contribute” significantly to the city’s crime rate, namely 30% of all crimes, considering they make up less than 10% of the city’s population. That’s why we need a police force to protect us from your likes.
    As you say, you just wanna have fun in Worcester during your stay. Is you’re idea of fun drunkenness, harassment, weapons possession, assault, disorderliness, rape, murder?
    Take a look at the schools crime stats on their websites. They’re up between 100% and 500% in every category in the last three years.
    Hey, don’t let the door hit you in the ass…

  10. Dan

    You know “James Madison,” you really should prove your work. Show me an official source that has 30% of crimes in the city coming from students. Your magical “schools crime stats” are nowhere to be found I’m afraid, or at least not in the form you want. According to WPI’s Annual Campus Safety report, crime was way down in 2007 compared to previous years (

    Wanna see something amazing? I can even tuen your made up stats against you. You said “They’re up between 100% and 500% in every category in the last three years.” How exactly would that be the student’s fault? The majority of crimes in and around campuses are AGAINST college students, by people that have nothing to do with the schools.

    As far as your list of offenses:

    drunkenness: it’s not a crime to be drunk if you’re over 21 (which a large portion of students are)

    harassment: very vague, and for the most part not a crime

    weapons possession: number of arrests for weapons possession by the WPI police force since 2005? Zero.

    disorderliness: Wow, do you really think college students are any more “disorderly” than anyone else? We’re pretty much confined to our own little corners of Worcester, don’t you think we’d just be harming ourselves?

    rape, murder assault: I’ll give you that drunken fratboys commit the occasional rape, but most of the students hate them as much as you hate us. The incidences of rape, murder, and assault by college students are so much lower than that of the general population, it’s not even funny. For you to brand all of us future doctors, lawyers, engineers, accountants, and teachers rapists and murders must really be something.

    Too bad you made shit up, otherwise you’d have had a really good point.

  11. Susan X.

    Intelligence and adolescence are mutually exclusive.
    I am a college level educator in Worcester County. I gave my 12 year old daughter the task of researching Mr. Madison’s assertion. In 2 hours she came back with credible data that substantiates the assertion that the student population inordinately contributes to the level of (crime) frequency in the city, in all categories, from misdemeanors to felonies. I wasn’t surprised. It was backed test and yielded a 1.645σ standard deviation to be exact. I’m assuming Dan has encountered that concept in his WPI education and understands what that means. In other words, a 90% correlation!
    My advice to him regarding his future at WPI and eventually as an adult in the real world. Don’t discount another’s assertion until you have proven them inconclusively incorrect. Not wrong – focus on the logic. Dan has failed to do that. He resorts to typical male adolescent behavior – badgering. In my statistics course, Dan would have been flunked for incomplete and illogical assertions.
    I have observed in my profession that adolescents interpret wordiness for logic to impress teachers. Another failing grade for his postings here and on the T&G. All miss the mark – they effect a male adolescent ranting, symptomatic of an over consumption of Twinkies and hormones.
    My suggestion to Dan. Take courses in philosophy, to acquire the basics of logical argumentation, applied research to apply empirical research techniques, and statistics to develop an understanding of data analysis.
    I know its hard being young and alone at college. Cooped up in an apartment or a dorm room ingesting Twinkies seven days a week. No friends. No girlfriend. No Mother to sooth a bruised ego. No father to give him guidance.
    But there is hope for him yet. Be aware Dan that the rampaging adolescent male hormones you are experiencing will subside. And you may eventually understand that your childish tantrums are counterproductive; not a form of argument that convinces others.
    And that he believes he and his sort have a claim as Americas’ future leaders, well I can only say, May God help us.

  12. Dan

    Re: Susan X,

    As I stated to “James Madison,” please show your work. Link to the city or state data on crime committed by university students.

    Just to be fair, you got a few things wrong. I’ve never posted on the T&G website, I’ve passed multiple statistics courses (high school & college level), and I don’t eat Twinkies.

    As far as your advice goes, in our legal system the burden of truth falls on the prosecution. If you’re going to make wild accusations, then you better be able to put some facts behind it. As of now, I’m the only one who has linked to any sort of report or official data source.

    You can spout off a standard deviation, but is it a standard deviation OF? It doesn’t make a lot of sense in this instance. You can only produce a standard deviation on a sampling of measurements? What is it that was measured here? You’ve produced a correlation, but failed to give it any scope.

    As far as the rest of your post, you call me adolescent and immature, but it sounds like you might be projecting other peoples problems onto me. I have a mother who cares for me, a father who I consider one of my closest friends, and a group of friends that I enjoy spending time with. I’m involved in clubs and activities on campus, and I little resemble this hormonal, Twinkie eating man all alone in his room. You chastise me for being brusque with someone, yet all you do is present data without any frame of reference and insult me. You sound very little like any “college level educator in Worcester County.”

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