"Not eating chard. That's what all those weirdos eat at their stupid picnics on the Hungry Ghost lawn." -Nina

October 26, 2007

Higgins Supporters Circle The Wagons

Just received this over the transom, via the Paradise City Forum Yahoo Group. Someone forwarded the group an email they themselves were forwarded, written by Paul Spector, Ward 2 City Councilor. An email in which Paul implores people to carefully consider their vote for Mayor in the upcoming election. Describing a defeat of Clare a "disaster" and Gene Tacy "inexperienced and philosophically out of sync with the vast majority of us in town." Paul writes,

Hi;

The anti-Claire forces have coalesced around a candidate who is both inexperienced and philosophically out of sync with the vast majority of us in town (Gene Tacy last week again criticized the city council for 'attacking' President Bush...our "Commander-in- Chief... in a time of war) It's very important that we begin to understand what Claire's loss would mean. Perhaps you have disagreed with individual decisions or policies of this City administration however, overall I think in very trying times this Mayor has done an excellent job. I also believe a loss for this Mayor would be a tremendous loss for all of us and would be nothing short of a disaster for this City. Below is an email from Claire Higgins which I hope you'll read and pass/send on to your email list serve.

Paul Spector
Ward II City Counselor
And here is the Mayor's letter,
Dear Friends,

I am writing to you to ask for your vote on Tuesday, November 6th. I am grateful for the trust the voters of Northampton have shown in me and I would like to continue to serve them as Mayor for another term.

These last two years have been productive and successful in Northampton. I was happy to open our new Senior Center in September and proud of all the work that city government and the community put into this project. Not only was it a great example of collaborative effort for the public good, but it was also built to green building standards which makes it something we can all be proud of into the future. We have $20 million in new commercial development in the pipeline, development that will provide jobs and add to our commercial tax base. Northampton has acquired an additional 579 acres of open space that will balance growth with environmental protection. I have worked with the DPW to fund the construction and repair of sidewalks, making it safer for kids to get to school and for pedestrians generally. We are in the final stages of creating a comprehensive plan, developed with the input of literally hundreds of our neighbors, to guide our city over the coming years.

I am proudest of the solid financial status of the city that we have maintained and improved over the last few years. This is the part of the job that remains in the background and receives little attention, but without which all of our city services would be at risk. Our bond rating remains highly favorable. We have used our stabilization fund to protect our operating budget from the ups and downs in state aid and other changes in revenue. I have also created a second stabilization fund for capital spending, so that we can afford new projects like the proposed police station without asking for more property taxes. And we have secured millions of federal dollars in additional assistance for city projects.

Our city has received national recognition in several areas for what it is and what it has accomplished. On a personal note, I am honored to have been a leader in guiding the discussion of municipal finance issues on a statewide level. I have also accepted an appointment by Governor Patrick to work on a task force that will shape education policy in Massachusetts for the next ten years.

I have had a lot on my brain (literally) during the last year. I have certainly been busy with city business and have not devoted a lot of time to campaigning for reelection. But please know that I am eager to continue serving the citizens of Northampton. There are projects I want to finish or get started on in the next two years – among them the redevelopment of the state hospital property, the planning for a new public safety building, and the implementation of the comprehensive plan – and I am committed to leading Northampton to a strong future.

Once again, I would be grateful for your support and your votes on election day, Tuesday, September 6th.

Thank you,


Clare Higgins

I wonder if Gene has seen this? I do not think he reads the PCF. You must admit, the above emails are intriguing, as you can be damn sure that Paul or Clare wouldn't be sending these out if it was only Roy Martin she was facing. And for anyone interested in listening to the views of someone who is "inexperienced and philosophically out of sync with the vast majority of us in town..." You can listen to an audio file of Gene Tacy speak here, when Mary Serreze recently had him up on the VFR Community Radio Hour show. Mary also has audio featuring Gene and Clare from the Feiker School debate. You can listen to that here.

And coming up this Sunday evening, Claire will be on the Community Radio Hour show, 8pm on 103.3fm. If you have any questions you would like Clare to answer, send it via email, or leave it here in the comments, and as co-host, I will forward your question to Clare.

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