I have been a long time public administrator including serving Framingham as Town Manager.
I want to see Framingham to remain the vibrant suburban community it has been, while remaining affordable for a diverse group of residents. A transition to city government is an opportunity to employ a more efficient and effective form of government to serve our community, while we will retain the the characteristics and services we appreciate. I believe my knowledge of municipal operations can be helpful to the first city council.
I see one critical issue as affordability. Framingham has one of the highest dollar tax rates in the state. It is mitigated by the fact we shift some of our tax burden to businesses, but it is a concerning indicator. I believe we need to work hard to stabilize both our property tax rate and our water and sewer bills to assure Framingham remains affordable for all. I am confident that I have the skills to do this, while retaining the municipal services we have grown to appreciate.
Revitalization of our neighborhood centers is a major challenge that must be met. One of the best ways to increase values and stabilize taxes is to see newly generated growth in our neighborhood centers. Blight will be removed and the neighborhoods improved. The City must work with the owners to establish responsible plans, as Framingham deserves so much more than we have today in these neighborhoods. The fortunes of one landlord cannot dictate the quality of our lives and neighborhoods.
Given the timing of the council taking office, a robust budget process must be the first major priority. From the outset the council must review the budget from top to bottom and hold in-depth discussions regarding proposed expenditures. This was difficult to do in our Town form of government and has lead to some inefficiencies. I am confident that we can provide services at the current level, and do it for less. That has to be mission number one!!
I was born and brought up here, and have long been active in town affairs. My native status does not make me any more qualified than anyone else to hold office, but it is a large part of my motivation. I have had decades of municipal administrative experience, honing my skills in many areas, but particularly around budgets and other financial issues. I think the combination of my motivation to work for this community and my professional background make me a good fit for the first council.
I believe this video, courtesy of a show I did with Representative Jack Patrick Lewis, captures my ideas well.
Small Business owner/manager of 2 construction corps for 30+ years; capital improvement manager
I want to assist in restoring Framingham's previous standing in the Metrowest area as the regional hub of local commerce while rebuilding a strong economic foundation for future growth. Councilors must perform a careful, thorough review of the municipal budget while using sound business practices to make reasonable financial recommendations that ensure Framingham allocates proper funding to the important essential services that our residents depend on - Schools, Public Works, Police, and Fire.
First, as a single mother of two grown daughters and home owner since 1998, I understand the stress that continual increases in real estate taxes and rate fees place on property and business owners. It is imperative that financial expertise be applied to our municipal government so that Framingham tax and rate payers are allowed to stay in their homes and retain their businesses. Ownership of a home or business is for our residents the most significant investment in our community that they will make and we must support them.
Next, serving as a Planning Board member for the past decade, the revenue generated by land use applications has not provided the offset that it should towards reducing government spending. It seems that spending has been out of control which has created a situation that has made it impossible for our senior citizens on fixed incomes to stay in their homes as well as having an adverse impact on young couples with children who are financially over-burdened.
The City Council should focus on the reorganization of the municipal structure that allows for a better organization of services in such a way that processes are interconnected and streamlined, and removes staff overlap with a reduction in unnecessary non-essential personnel. and improved residential and business customer relations. A payroll reduction will in turn reduce continued shortfalls in municipal operations and assist in lowering the dual tax rate that burdens home and business owners
My current role as Chair of the Planning Board, serving my fourth term, in addition to my many years of experience as a small business owner and manager in the construction industry in both the public and private sector, gives me a deep insight and understanding of our commercial tax base. I would like the opportunity to apply my unique skillset by serving my constituents in a broader role that includes my financial and business expertise in combination with my zoning and land use experience.
I respectfully ask for one of your two votes on September 26, 2017. Thank you!
20 years working downtown Framingham as real estate agent, also manager at the Portuguese Club.
My vision is to see a city with a minimum of social problems, like crimes of all kinds reduce to zero or close to it. Framingham to me is a city where all the residents can live a comfortable live, where taxes will be reasonable and that Framingham should be a happy city just like is now. People are happy here, you do not see fights on the street, traffic is polite, people are understandable and help each other. I do not see problems against race, color, or any other difference between us.
One of the problems, that was mentioned before from other people is the empty buildings, there are a lot of wasted spaces vacant and seems that people do not care, this building attracts many problems to the city. We as a city should be able to find a good use for them and work with the owners to solve this problem.
South side and Southeast side should get more attention to become developed such as the north side areas.
The number one priority is the transition from town to city, where not only the town members, but all residents should get together and help this historic moment for all new city. Once we start right, things never go wrong, so I think that we all concentrate all the efforts to make this transition to be perfect.
The reason I am running for office is to represent the communities of Brazilians and Hispanics and all others who made Framingham their second home. I support the ESL program one hundred percent, because I think we all should speak English, but not only that, it will be much easier to communicate to each other, especially on emergency cases, but also the entrepreneurship which will give new jobs and bring opportunities to the city. I think the city needs this integration between all residents.
My name is Pablo Maia and I live in Framingham for more than ten years, I am originally from Brazil, I am married with Aleeza Maia and my daughter Tracy who's married with Jeff Chaves gave us a beautiful granddaughter Mariana. I love this city because of the people, I am proud to be town member for many years and see that how the citizens of Framingham love and care about the city. The respect they have for each other, and I want to make sure that I can continue that and serve the city on the best way possible. Also, when I see the school graduation I feel that Framingham complied its mission offering the support, safe, the ambience to the school system.
I'm beginning 2nd term as a Selectman and 2nd year as Chairman. I have an MBA and a BA in economics
Framingham should be a vibrant inclusive city; providing strong schools, outstanding programs for our seniors and excellent municipal services. We need to address traffic issues, protect neighborhoods, preserve open space, foster walkability, guard environmental resources and continue progress on downtown revitalization; including environmental clean-up.
We must do the above while containing tax, water and sewer rates through tighter management and responsible neighborhood-friendly development. Our current rate of spending increases is totally unsustainable. We can't tax our way out of this situation and we need to address it now.
We will not meet these goals without engaging our residents and businesses in the process and by making long-term strategic plans for Framingham’s future. This includes building apartments only when there are significant strategic benefits for the community and the neighbors reach a consensus.
Most of all; we need to do this together; as ONE FRAMINGHAM.
1. We need as smooth a transition to a city as possible. I have been working on the transition process since the night the ballot question passed. I will continue to work to make sure we hand over a government that is well-functioning. If elected I will collaborate with the Mayor and other Councilors as well as staff to make sure that residents and businesses see no adverse affects in the level of their services as we transition. I have the experience, relationships, skills and collaborative working style to help lead this effort.
2. Our current spending rates are unsustainable. This needs to be addressed immediately. We have an opportunity with nearly 50% of our municipal workforce becoming eligible for retirement in the next five years. We should develop a clear roadmap of how we will handle these vacancies find efficiencies where we can and also provide a career paths for mid-level employees who we train and then lose to other communities. This trend has been very expensive.
Developing a good working relationship with one another and the Mayor to assure that we have as smooth a transition as possible. We should get to know each other better as individuals so that we work from a position of respect.
The Council should establish practices that invite public input into our processes so that all voices in our community have an opportunity to be heard regarding any matter we discuss. We should allow constituents to speak during agenda items, solicit feedback and be very open in all of our dealings.
This Council has the opportunity to establish practices and attitudes that could shape our community for generations to come.
Those elected, will decide what traditions to keep and what standards to establish. How easy will it be to petition our local government regarding issues that matter to us? Will there be unnecessary hurdles or will the process be welcoming?
Framingham is a great town and we have the opportunity to be a great city if WE make it that way.
I am running so that I can continue the work I've begun as Selectman for the last 3.5 years. Some of the things I care about are:
--Leveraging my current experience to help lead a smooth transition
--Setting a tone in our new government that welcomes public input
--Reigning in tax, water and sewer rates
--Preservation of open space
--Making a good school system even better
--Protecting the quality of life in our neighborhoods
--Getting a handle on traffic issues
--Responsible neighborhood-friendly development and redevelopment
--Enhancing programs and services for our growing senior population
--Helping our neighborhoods organize so that they can be effective advocates
--Ensuring that we all treat each other with respect
I had a great childhood growing up in Framingham and I believe that every child should have that opportunity. I also believe we need new programs to help our seniors who built this great community to be able to age in place.
I am a graduate of the Framingham Public Schools, Framingham State University and Bentley University (MBA). In my first term as your Selectman I developed a new collaborative relationship with the school department resulting in an agreed upon budget amount two months before town meeting that met the educational needs of our children and didn't stress other departments.
I also worked on the Jack’s Abby tax incentive that resulted in multiple new businesses, increased tax revenue and new jobs in downtown Framingham.
I worked on holding tax increases down while also improving services.
I also helped gain concessions from the Millwood Golf Course developer when Town Meeting declined to buy the property. This resulted in 30 acres of public open space and age-restricted housing which won’t further burden our crowded classrooms. This was at no cost to our taxpayers.
I have supported neighborhood-friendly redevelopment such as Lifetime Fitness adding a popular amenity, new tax revenue and new jobs to Framingham.
I am an even-handed leader who listens to all viewpoints before making the decision that I believe is best for Framingham.
Currently I am working with the MWRTA and the Callahan Center to get a bus for our seniors at no additional cost to taxpayers.
As a long-term community volunteer I have been involved with the following organizations: MetroWest Regional Transit Authority, Framingham Veterans’ Commission, Daniel's Table, The MetroWest Health Foundation, Programs for People, Framingham Public Schools (FPS) Health Advisory Committee, Resiliency for Life at Framingham High School, South Middlesex Legal Services, Kidscare Program, Framingham Court Mediation Services, FPS Food Service Director Search Committee, Framingham Public Access Founding Board of Directors as Treasurer/CFO, The Framingham Youth Commission, The Framingham Civic League, and others.