Jason Law sent in this note on on the GAP donation:

I’m a current student that visits your blog occasionally–just wanted to comment that either a) there is some kind of precedent for this sort of thing, or b) there are other items you would raise issue with. For example, check out this nearly year-old article about the new Williamstown Elementary School.

The article is an interesting read, although, like many Record articles, it sometimes reads as more editorial than news — not that there is anything wrong with that!
Note that it appears that the total budgetary outlay is somewhere in the $2 million dollar range (albeit over a decade). Hmmm. Our hypotheticals from yesterday no longer seem so outlandish. Highlights from the article include:

“I think it’s tremendously exciting,” Ouellette [vice president for administration and treasurer at Williams] said. “Projects of this nature usually are defeated at meetings due to the high burden on tax payers, but because of the College’s help, it passed the first time out.”

In other words, the tax payers in Williamstown would not spend their money on the project, but, if the College is going to foot the bill, then why not?

Overall, the College’s reaction to the elementary school has been quite positive. Faculty members with children who reside in the town are pleased that their young children will have the opportunity to attend this facility and taxpayers are pleased that the project will have a low impact on their property taxes.

Everybody wins! Of course, the losers (those who would have benefited if this money had been devoted to another purpose) do not appear in the article.

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