To the Residents & Voters of Waltham
Dear Waltham Resident and Voter,
As I indicated in my prior mailing, I am running for Mayor to help our community. Help with what?
A. My belief is the City’s elected officials should be protecting and serving the City. I am often asked why do these huge developments keep happening? My answer is willing politicians. I am not willing to give away the City, its zoning or its infrastructure. Nor should big developers be able to get around the City’s Master Plan via the City Council’s Special Permit process. The Master Plan adopted by the City Council addresses overdevelopment. The problem is the majority of the Councillors ignore the Master Plan. These huge developments are classified as residential. So, all residential taxpayers bear part of the tax burden for these projects.
I am the only candidate for Mayor who has not surrounded herself with (and is not supported by) the developers, lawyers, facilitators, ombudsmen who push/facilitate/lobby their big development agenda. These hidden figures are no heroes. They are just trying to take advantage of the City. The residents and City have to live with the results of their pursuits. As Mayor and formerly as city attorney, I followed up on defective workmanship and non-compliance claims with these projects, at the time or when discovered by residents. These projects are “controlled construction” meaning the owner’s architect signs off on the projects.
B. There are complex and critical issues ahead. I have both the will and experience to stand up for the residents and complete the tasks. My record reflects that. That includes the Fernald land and the special interests seeking to overdevelop the land with an apartment complex. But, I cannot do it by myself! The issue with Fernald is what zoning and uses, if any, will be approved by the City Council in the future.
C. Another critical issue is implementing the Education Plan for Waltham High School, which the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) told me the Plan comes first, not a building. This Plan unifies the needs of all Waltham students, whether they seek a college education or career, vocational or technical paths, including one of 14 career and vocational and technical programs available at the new high school. As a matter of fact, the MSBA asked our superintendent for permission to use Waltham’s plan as a model for other Districts.
Building a new high school is necessary to achieve the educational plan and maintain the high school’s accreditation. Some of our new high school costs have been reimbursed by MSBA already. The existing high school building is needed for a middle school to meet the increased enrollments.
The School Committee, School Building Committee, Ward Councillors and Mayor will work with all the neighbors on impacts to them.
I am the only candidate for Mayor who not only has extensive experience in obtaining millions of dollars of State funding for all Waltham’s new schools ($125 million), but also has experience in building 8 new schools and in keeping the contractors and architects in check with taxpayers’ money.
I respectfully ask for your vote on Tuesday, November 5, 2019.
Jeannette A. McCarthy