Here are some of my ideas for a better Newton
Energy and the Environment
Understanding the global environmental challenges we face, I have a concrete plan to have Newton 50% Green by 2020 and target 80% by 2025. We will use MA’s new Renewable Energy legislation, in conjunction with community aggregation, community solar and the Mass SAVE program, all without burdening tax payers. Having professionally developed large scale wind and solar projects that will cost effectively offset tens of millions of tons of CO2, I know exactly how to reach our goals.
Affordability in Newton
I would focus on building and maintaining units that are actually affordable as opposed to development of high density and luxury housing that is out of scale with the neighborhood. Promote senior housing in the villages and utilize the new Accessory Apartment Ordinance to create small affordable units that seniors, our public employees and other residents can afford. I have a strategy to help those wishing to build an accessory apartment that includes a centralized process for securing financing, filing permits, hiring a contractor and navigating landlordship.
I would also promote commercial development, thereby providing tax revenue without burdening our city services. We need to rebalance a tax base that is making Newton unaffordable for so many on fixed incomes.
I believe local representation is the cornerstone of democracy and as such I am voting “No”. If Newton votes “No” on Nov 7th, I will champion a proposal that utilizes all the Charter Commission’s recommendations, but reduces the size of the council to 16 members and maintains a balance of 8 local (ward) and 8 at-large representatives. I see this solution as a compromise, something that is often lacking in today’s political climate.
As a parent with two daughters in elementary school and a wife who is on our PTO Board, I understand the importance of maintaining the best schools in the country. As Councilor, I will make decisions with tremendous experience and knowledge of our schools, what our kids need and what parents expect.
Professional Experience and Education
A strong business background with an excellent understanding of development, having managed renewable energy projects worth hundreds of millions of dollars. I will use my experience to negotiate with developers to always get the best deal for Newton.
BA in Economics & History from Bucknell, MA in History from Colgate, MBA in Finance from the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton). I will use this background to steer us towards a more financially stable future.