Police and fire departments get new sign

by susan on September 28, 2012

Post image for Police and fire departments get new sign

Those looking for the Southborough Police Department or the Southborough Fire Department will now have an easier time of it. A few weeks ago, a new sign went up in front of the public safety complex on Main Street. Previously the only sign was a small metal street sign announcing the police department.

Facilities Manager Phil Rinehart said the new sign was paid for out of his general maintenance budget. “It is something we had been looking at for a couple of years and we were finally able to get it done,” he said via email.

The white sign is made of PVC and it hangs on granite posts, so it will require minimal work to maintain, Rinehart said. The sign is similar in design to the one the library installed last year.

1 daddyo September 28, 2012 at 1:08 PM

looks good

2 Rob September 28, 2012 at 1:09 PM

I’m wondering how that sign will help them catch the people breaking in to houses like its a free for all.

3 Al Hamilton September 28, 2012 at 2:20 PM

The sign does look nice. But I am not sure it send the right message. In the next few months we are going to hear how our budgets are being cut to the bone (even though they will go up).

Clearly there is still room for some “nice to have’s” in the budget so we must be filling all of the “must have, critical items in the budget”.

4 resident September 28, 2012 at 2:35 PM

I think we would have been better served to put that money back into the budget or free cash or whatever since it will be a difficult budget year. I agree that this is a nice to have and not a must have. Another example of the wasteful thinking of our leaders in this town. I am not sure they will ever learn. When you do something like this and then tell me we have no money to put on more officers and our houses are being broken into left and right, it makes the taxpayers wonder. Somebody please put a stop to the senseless spending in this town!!!!

5 John Kendall September 28, 2012 at 2:42 PM

I don’t see it as a “nice to have”. There hasn’t been much of a sign at the street since….ever. We have signs leading everywhere, and now folks can find our public safety buildings just as easy as they can the library or the transfer station.

6 Resident September 28, 2012 at 3:11 PM

I agree with John. Although a sign seems like an unimportant thing, I think in this case it is more than a sign. It is an outreach to the community and it was ill advised for there not to be a clear sign to public safety before now. The design is simple and looks restrained and tasteful. I bet it didn’t cost a fortune.

7 resident September 28, 2012 at 4:11 PM

And we needed granite posts? I bet it costs more than you think. I am also willing to bet that Assabet students could have created something that would have been just as nice without all the cost involved. You can bet that this will come back to Phil when he asks for more money for something at town meeting. I never would have voted to spend money on that right now, maybe in the future.

8 Pat Q. September 30, 2012 at 1:40 PM

I agree

9 Pat Q. September 30, 2012 at 1:41 PM

I meant, I agree with John Kendall’s post. (My reply ended up under a different post)

10 Townie September 28, 2012 at 7:47 PM

There’s so much negativity in this town it’s sickening. Life is too short to be so snobby. The sign looks great, and matches the rest of the signs in town. Isn’t that what residents want? This town to look better? Thank you Phil!

resident (not to be confused with Resident), if the town gave you “X” amount of dollars in a budget and you found a little left over and saw you could put it to good use to make the town look better, wouldn’t you do it? I HIGHLY doubt you’d give it back. Not to mention, the cost of the sign will not cover an officer for one year.

Take a little pride in the town we live in. Stop being a snob!

11 resident September 28, 2012 at 11:05 PM

I am no snob I can guarantee that. I do think the cost of that sign could have funded several hours of police work/overtime instead. I think it is you who sounds like a snob. I do not need material things that look nice to make me happy. I struggle every day and work 2 jobs to make ends meet while battling a serious illness that ciuld leave my children parentless at anytime. So townie..having a great looking sign instead of a luttle more safety is not a necessity. If that makes me a snob so be it. You should try doing with less and stop blind peronal attacks.

12 Elder September 29, 2012 at 8:40 AM

Townie you are so right on with your comment. People in this town always find a way to be critical. I think the sign reflects the beauty of our town and represents the pride we have in our town. Would you be proud of a piece of wood nailed to a 2 by 4 for a sign identifying two of our most professional departments in town? I love the sign at the library as it makes me proud to be a membre of the library and the town.

You can’t take money from Phil’s budget and give it to the police dept for staffing. Money can’t be transferred from one budget to the other, so lets end the cry that police staffing is hurt by this sign. I give Phil credit for running his departmnet at a level that allowed him a little extra and his sharing it for the good of the town.

13 Al Hamilton September 29, 2012 at 2:02 PM


“You can’t take money from Phil’s budget and give it to the police dept for staffing. Money can’t be transferred from one budget to the other, ”

This is not correct. The BOS has the authority under state law to transfer up to $5000 from any budget to another budget during the last 3 months of the fiscal year. The intent of this authority is to permit the BOS to cover small variances in the budgets from other resources under their control so as to avoid having to rely on the reserve fund.

Let’s assume that the sign costs $1000 and that $1000 might buy 20 hours of police patrols ($50/hr). So in a very real sense we as a community are saying that the sign is more important than another 20 hours of police patrols.

I am not trying to dump on the sign, which does look nice, or our facilities department. I am merely pointing out that we will be hearing in the next few months a list of dreadful things about the coming budget year. We should keep in mind that, if we have the funds to deploy these nice signs then our budgets are not as tight as we are sometimes lead to believe.

14 Frank Crowell September 29, 2012 at 10:33 AM

I love the beauty of……..

– Shrinking town budgets in a consistently down economy……

– A TM that actually votes yes fewer times on increased spending…

– An education committee and a Superintendent who actually understands that school budget is taking too large a portion of the town budget and acts upon it……

– State legislature that ends internal corruption and finds a way for educational non-profits to contribute to town budgets that match services provided…….

– New signs in town that fit a beer budget rather than a Champaign budget.

But the real world is far different.

15 M September 29, 2012 at 11:02 AM

I don’t like where the sign is located since it blocks the Gazebo. A lot of effort and expense went into the Gazebo and it was so nicely situated. It looked good from any angle as you approached the area by car or on foot. The sign is so big that it ruined that.
In and of itself the sign is nice, but if it where smaller or perpendicular to the street or situated at the entrance, it would have been better. Sad. Ruins the site.

16 daddyo September 29, 2012 at 1:05 PM

the sign looks good ! it is maintence free. should be there for many many years to come. therfore well worth puting the atractive and maintence free granite post to support it. we should have sign for our fire and police and not one that will be peeling and falling apart in a few short years. great job to who ever is responsible !

17 Alan September 29, 2012 at 2:06 PM

Two granite post that cost $300 to $400 that last forever. Big sign that saves one persons life who has an emergancy that doesn’t know where the police and fire station is, worth every penny. Both smart ideas and worth more than a little overtime. I do think I would have put it perpendicular to the road but it is what it is and will work.

With a school system already hinting they need more money and three new swap shops under construction I am surprised this sign is such a heated debate.

18 anonymous by necessity September 29, 2012 at 5:40 PM

I love Susan’s website. It’s a wonderful place to find out what’s going on in town. I also think that it’s nice there is a forum for people to share their opinions and ask questions.

But I am saddened to see that almost every tiny “controversy” spins into personal attacks. I actually find valid points on both sides of above arguments worth considering. I wish people would stick to debating each other’s positions without attacking the people themselves.

I often have strikingly different political opinions than family members. We don’t scream at each other and call each other names over it. We explain our sides (ok sometimes a little passionately) and, when necessary, agree to disagree.

The vitriol that has been springing up on this site not only forces me to post anonymously, but usually intimidates me from even commenting on my opinions at all.

Consider this a plea for tolerance.

19 Alan September 29, 2012 at 11:35 PM

Susan, is there any pictures of the last sign that was there?

20 John Kendall September 30, 2012 at 4:25 PM

I checked but I don’t have any photos of the old sign. There was an aluminum post with a small illuminated horizontal sign at the top that said POLICE. There never was a sign for the fire station that was at the street.

21 Kelly Roney September 30, 2012 at 2:51 PM

There had been a sign all along, but it was inconspicuous.

22 Just Curious September 30, 2012 at 6:57 PM


Its a plastic sign! Its note gold leaf! Its plastic.

Get a grip! The fate of the free world doesn’t rest on this one small sign.

There are a lot more important things to worry about than one plastic sign.


23 Rob October 1, 2012 at 7:46 AM

I must say that it is a nice sign!!! but we do have more important issues facing the town that hopefully the will be addressed as well..

24 John Kendall October 1, 2012 at 10:17 AM

Right. The sign has been made and erected. It looks nice and now after many, many, years, motorists and new residents can easily locate the police and fire stations. Let’s move on to more important issues. How about the conditions of some of our streets? Mine is disintegrating, how about yours?

25 Mark Ford October 1, 2012 at 1:40 PM

…or the condition of the Police Station itself? That sign is about as much money as we’ve spent in the past few years on Police Department infrastructure…

26 Alan October 1, 2012 at 2:59 PM

The old small sign that said “Police” is what I remember. For those of us that do have medical issues like resident, or others that may be in a stange town with an emergancy, being able to find the Police and Fire station is worth way more than the $1000. Yes al Hamilton it is worth more than 20 hours of policing time, way more as I have been in this cituation before myself. Plastic or gold plated it’s the best money the town has spent for a long time and the cost is minumum.

Thank you “Anonymous by Necessity” and please keep that blog name and write as much as you would like, whenever you would like. It is a blog after all and you opinion counts. If others choose to reveal there idenity thats there choice. The fact that people get upset when people use an anonymous name tells me that they read the posts and take those opinions to heart.

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