The Citizen Chronicle has invited all Town Council candidates to submit letters describing their candidacy and the issues that are important to them. They will be published in the order we receive them. The election will take place on Tuesday, June 11. The following letters have been received and published to date: James Daubney, Mike Marketti.
Greetings from Prince Edward Island. I’m here on a planned family vacation.
I’ve lived in Southbridge for over 35 years. I’m retired now and have the time to serve the community. Over the years, I’ve been involved in community service. I was President of the Southbridge Optimist Club for 2 terms, I served on the Planning and Development Subcommittee and the Redevelopment Authority. Also, I worked diligently to stop the planned landfill expansion, get a landfill bylaw on the books, persuade the town council to form a post-landfill committee, and I helped with the legal settlement to provide an additional five years of curbside trash pickup in Southbridge at no additional cost to the residents.
In my opinion, the issues in Southbridge are infrastructure needs (roads, sidewalks, firestation), public safety and economic development. I invited Congressman Richard Neal to Southbridge last month, to ask for federal assistance for our infrastructure needs. Congressman Neal said he is working on infrastructure legislation in Congress and with President Trump.
I also spoke with Congressman Neal about the need for a new fire station and any funding he could assist us with. The Congressman offered ideas, suggestions and assistance with obtaining Federal SAFER grants. I fully support either renovating the present Fire Station or building a new Fire Station on Central Street. The issue is cost and location.
I’d also like to see improvements in economic development with an emphasis on results and accountability. The best quality of Southbridge is its history. I think our history could be useful in selling the town for tourism and/or attracting new businesses.
I would like to see a greater emphasis on public safety in Southbridge, and a greater police presence downtown. Funds must be reallocated for added security at our public schools and at the Southbridge public library.
I am in support of allowing retail marijuana cultivation facilities in Southbridge as the town could use the tax revenue. If the voters approve the ballot question then traffic issues must be addressed first.
Finally, I serve on the Curbside Advisory Committee. We’re searching for ways to provide curbside trash and recycling pickup at a minimum cost to residents once the trash contract expires in five years. I also support having a transfer station in Southbridge.
Elections matter, so please vote on June 11, 2019. Please vote for Mike Marketti for Southbridge Town Council.