Two years ago, CEB did a candidate interview and asked questions that covered a wide-range of local issues. The intent was to find out exactly what the candidate believed in, what capabilities he or she possessed and what stands were taken. The whole purpose was to give enough information so the voters could make an intelligent decision far beyond simple name recognition, slogans and plurality of signage.
This is good and healthy and really helps locals get the right persons elected for the job.
But there exists also in politics, some issues that if a candidate says yes or no, could doom or succeed their run.
The candidate could be likeable, personable, kind, truthful and just an around swell person. They could be extremely capable and have a tremendous resume and even a great track record. They could be largely in agreement with your political leanings.
But if they come down on the wrong side of an issue that the majority of voters care about…ALL THOSE PLUSES MEAN NOTHING.
In my short couple of decades here, I have seen this over and over again especially in hot-button issues such as the Access Road, CPA, tax overrides and the Waterfront.
Well, I think the local historic district ordinance is, at least for me, the one-issue that will make or break my support for a candidate. *
That’s because amongst all other considerations the single piece of legislation that will secure our future and our economic well-being and quality-of-life will be the preservation of our character.
Without it, our future will not be a bright one as we shuffle down the dark hall of ignominy.
To cheer ourselves up, we’ll have to go down a flight of steps, on noise-dampened carpet into the dark recesses of the Library archives and dig out old pictures of Newburyport’s brief renaissance at the end of the twentieth century. The exclamation will no longer be, “Newburyport, I just love Newburyport!” to “Remember when Newburyport used to be so special?”
ANY CANDIDATE THAT DOES NOT SUPPORT THE LOCAL HISTORIC DISTRICT EXPANSION WILL NOT RECEIVE MY SUPPORT*.
It’s that simple.
* Two years ago, there was a super-majority of city councilors in support of the expanded LHD. Two years ago, both mayoral candidates were in support of the large historic district. Let’s flesh out who is or is not in support of the LHD!