The Boston City Council has thirteen members: nine district representatives and four at-large members, with no term limits. Four City Council Districts will hold preliminary elections on September 26, 2017. Districts one, two, seven, and nine have all met the candidate requirement to call for a Preliminary Election. Each district race has at least three candidates running. But, the remaining five out of nine District City Council contests will not have a preliminary election.The general election for Boston City Council will take place on Tuesday. November 7, 2017.
The most important functions of the City Council are providing effective and responsive constituent services and providing oversight in the City of Boston's annual budget. In District 2, the City Councilor also plays a significant role in the development process. As City Councilor, I will be a strong, independent voice to ensure that every resident of District 2 has an advocate at City Hall -- investing in our public schools, supporting affordable housing options for families and seniors, working to make our streets safe and healthy, advocating for effective transportation, and working to make Boston the greenest city in America.
This year, the South End has seen multiple tragic traffic fatalities on Tremont Street and there have been other terrible accidents throughout District 2. With more cars on the road and new traffic-avoidance applications steering drivers through unfamiliar residential neighborhoods, we can expect to see continued tragedies if something is not done. I supported Mayor Walsh and the Council's efforts to reduce residential speed limits. Increased enforcement in especially treacherous intersections and through problematic transit corridors will provide an short fix and seek to change driving patterns. As City Councilor, I will work closely with the Boston Transportation Department, Boston Police Department, residents, local business owners, and stakeholders to develop comprehensive solutions to this very real problem and ensure that pedestrians and bikers can move freely throughout our neighborhoods.
As the father of two and a Boston Public Schools parent, I know how important it is for all children to have access to a great public education. Universal pre-K that includes comprehensive programming addressing childhood nutrition, health, and development, is critical in providing all young people access to the limitless opportunity they deserve. As City Councilor, I will request appointment to the Education Committee, so I can focus on programming that enables every child to succeed, regardless of their zip code.
Providing constituent service is a City Councilor’s most important responsibility. Every District 2 resident — no matter if they are from Bay Village or South Boston, Chinatown or South End, Downtown or Beacon Hill — wants their trash picked up on time, pot-holes fixed, sidewalks level and snow removed. They want a City Councilor who they know is their voice inside City Hall fighting every day to provide services and resources to District 2. For nearly a decade, that is exactly what I did in City Hall, first as both the Mayor’s Liaison to the South End and Bay Village and the LGTBQ community, and later as the Director of the City’s Rental Housing Resource Center. As City Councilor, I will bring that same pride, passion and commitment to representing and advocating every day for all of District 2.
Whether you are a bike rider, pedestrian or use another mode transportation, I'm focused on safety first. No pedestrian should ever be fearful crossing Tremont Street or Broadway, nor any biker be fearful to ride from Broadway Station to the waterfront. I support implementing measures such as LED-lit crosswalks and electronic speed limit signs, which will help to increase safety by making crosswalks more visible and slowing drivers down. We also need to examine where more shared, dedicated and separated bike lanes can be added, as well as work to make sure these types of bike lanes are considered at the forefront of infrastructure planning, not as an afterthought. Making these types of improvements will help to increase the safety of bikers on the roads.
First, I would advocate for universal Pre-K education because studies have shown clearly that this is when it is most crucial for a child’s successful development. Second, I would advocate for having a school nurse and school psychologist in every school. This is an urban school district in which many of the students require additional support outside the classroom. That support should be available in every school all day long. I believe these measures — and others — will help to ensure our children start on a path to success.