My #1 priority is that we work together and that all voices are heard to improve our great city and meet the challenges of the future. I pledge as we address these city issues I will:
- Listen carefully
- Employ strategic thinking
- Be transparent
- Work with all my colleagues in a collaborative fashion
I will be here to serve you and will work for you.
Priority #1 Infrastructure
- Open spaces
- Public Buildings
Whether you drive, bike, walk or run we all need safe and well maintained streets and sidewalks. I will push to get the money needed to fund infrastructure projects. I am particularly concerned about:
- The state of our fields
- Crystal Lake
- Gath Pool
Priority #2 Education
Our education system is the shining star of our community. Myself and my children are products of an outstanding Newton education. This year was difficult and we can do better. I support:
- Ensuring our schools are well maintained
- Our teachers have classrooms they can feel proud of and our students feel a part of the school community
- Approving budgets so that all teachers have classrooms of their own
- Assistants and aides being compensated fairly. We should strive for retention of these valuable assets.
- Maintaining the excellence of our music programs
- Supporting school leadership that puts our students first
Priority #3 Development and Environment
It is vital to the future of Newton that we have thriving village centers and preserve what is best about Newton. Development is important for the city and I favor responsible development. But the city council’s job is to push the developers hard to get the correct projects for Newton. We must be tougher. It is not enough for developers to promise to install bike racks and environmental practices, those should be standard requirements.
I will be your voice on the council. I will listen to the residents of the area being impacted and to the City as a whole to get the best projects possible.
Priority #4 Aging in Place and Needs of Seniors
For those that love their homes in Newton, aging in place should be an option. Newton is working toward helping to make this a reality, but we are not there yet. Navigating the complicated world of reverse mortgages, deferring real estate taxes, and getting tax reductions is complex. I will:
- Strive to ensure that those that would like to age in place know all the city options available to them.
- Ensure that the city is doing the best they can to help facilitate this by looking at the different options and trying to make sure the policies that are currently in place are not prohibiting people from taking full advantage of them.
- Advocate for those that wish to downsize, to build housing suitable for seniors. Homes with ground floor entrances, bathrooms, and a bedroom.
Priority #5 Fiscal Responsibility
Long-term fiscal stability is a priority in Newton. Currently, Newton City spending is far outpacing Newton resident’s household income. We consistently plan incorrectly and never have money for basic City improvements. Just as any business owner would do I will:
- Identify our most needed expenditures by commissioning a Community Wellness Plan immediately
- Seek solutions for ongoing fiscal challenges
- Analyze our budget for cost-saving solutions
- Stop spending on needless consultant studies and listen to outcomes when we do
- Advocate for fully funding our pension fund in less than the planned 22 years
- Strive to set our City up for long-term fiscal success to ensure our children and future generations are not still paying for the mistakes of our past