UPDATE: The city has a fulltime legal department, yet apparently nobody thought to check whether interviewing a former city councilor less than 30 days after she quit might violate state ethics laws, the Globe reports (Globe account required).
A roving UHub reporter files this report from this afternoon's interviews of the two candidates for the job of city clerk:
The Committee on Rules chaired by Steve Murphy interviewed the two candidates for the job. The first was Maureen Feeney, who fielded mostly softball questions from the councilors present for about half an hour.
However, Counselor Yancey asked her about the removal of councilor Turner - specifically the hearing at which the council voted 11-1 to remove him (one guess who that one vote was). Yancey asked if it was true that the rules don't allow for an item to be brought up and voted on in the same day unless voted on by a majority. Feeney agreed that is what the rules say. Yancey brought up the fact that he objected and so it was not unanimous and so Turner should not have been removed. Feeney agreed that rules should be followed. Yancey did not press the point.
The second candidate, Natalie Carithers, then also answered about the same questions from the councilors and also spoke for about half an hour. Yancey also asked her about Turner, but it was a brief discussion: She said she didn't know much about the hearing at which he was removed (even though she ran for his seat).
It appeared that the committee was going to have a discussion about the candidates but Murphy said something about the fact that there were cameras present and so that changed the complexion of the situation and so gavelled the meeting to a close.
City Council to briefly consider second applicant for city clerk's job before giving it to Maureen FeeneyBy adamg - 12/10/11 - 4:34 pm
Steve Murphy's Committee on Rules and Administration will pose tough questions to Natalie Carithers of Dorchester on her bid to become the next city clerk at an interview on Monday. The committee is also scheduled to formally interview recently retired Councilor Maureen Feeney before members vote on a recommendation to the full council.
The interviews begin at 3:30 p.m. in the Atkins Room on the fifth floor of City Hall.
The Globe reports a recount showed Bill Linehan really did beat Suzanne Lee - and that a council redistricting plan he authored would shift two precincts where he did really poorly out of his district.
South End Patch reports Suzanne Lee will formally ask the city elections department to recount votes in District 2, where officials said she lost to incumbent Councilor Bill Linehan by just 87 votes.
The Globe reports the longtime Dorchester city councilor quietly submitted her resignation last week rather than just waiting to be replaced on Jan. 1. Did she convince Rosaria Salerno to retire as city clerk?
Yes, Ms. Pressley, we're talking to you, now that the Herald has named you a force to be reckoned with (well, or they would have if they hadn't spelled it "rekoned"): Remember what happened to the last at-large councilor who did surprisingly well and started having his name bandied about as the next mayor and don't fall in love.
Meanwhile, David Bernstein crunches Tuesday's numbers in the at-large race.
With all precincts now in, city numbers show incumbent Councilor Bill Linehan defeating challenger Suzanne Lee by just 87 votes in District 2 (South Boston, South End, Chinatown).
Ayanna Pressley, the first-term incumbent whom many thought was most vulnerable to defeat this year, topped the field of candidates for one of four at-large City Council seats.
(Originally appeared at www.bostonbastard.com. This post reflects the opinion of the Boston Bastard and not that of UHub and Adam G.)
In September, Suzanne Lee had one thing that Bill Linehan didn’t – the element of surprise. No one expected a first-time candidate from Chinatown to give much trouble to an incumbent South Bostonian in “South Boston’s District.”
That all changed when Lee smacked Linehan across the face in the polls, Sept. 27, taking the top spot in the preliminary election.
All of a sudden, what was not expected to be a difficult battle for Linehan, has turned into one of two hotly-contested district races this year.
It remains to be seen how much support Linehan was able to drum up since coming in second, but it’s clear the race would not be a cake walk.
As far as campaign financing goes, both Linehan and Lee reported roughly the same amount of total campaign donations for the year at the time of the election, September 27. But on the Friday following the election, Linehan’s campaign deposited $23,630 in donations.
Linehan didn’t actually report any receipts in the first two weeks of October, but in that time, he did sink $ 17,936.18 into his campaign, predominately in local media advertising.
Dave Atkins of Roslindale reports he's gotten two of these Flaherty cards, both signed, in slightly different handwriting, by "John."
Am I supposed to mistake this card as an endorsement of Michael Flaherty by John Connolly?
Connolly, of course, has flooned Ayanna Pressley, but is also running as a sort of non-slate slate with the other two incumbents, Felix Arroyo and Steve Murphy.
Flaherty gave up his at-large seat to run for mayor in 2009. Sean Ryan and Will Dorcena round out the field in Tuesday's election, in which voters will pick four at-large councilors.
(Originally appeared at www.bostonbastard.com)
I can remember watching Steve Murphy speaking over a year ago to the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization (GBIO). Murphy was still in the midst of his failed run at the State Treasurer’s office, and was asked to speak along with fellow candidate Steve Grossman and then-Treasurer Tim Cahill.
The GBIO had been campaigning against banks that are not headquartered in Massachusetts, and thus have no legal obligation to loan money at less than 18 percent interest – the state mandated usury limit.
The GBIO asked the candidates about their willingness to move state funds out of any banks that do not recognize that 18 percent interest usury limit.
While Grossman came off as a polished politician giving lip service, and Cahill was just full of shit in general, Murphy easily stole the show, speaking about growing up around churches that are now a part of the GBIO and the importance of social justice that was instilled in him as a youth.
The Jamaica Plain Gazette quizzed the seven candidates on some JP-specific issues. Only JP resident Sean Ryan had any criticisms of the way the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Council handled the matter.
Speaking of the neighborhood council, the Gazette also reports that among the Whose Foods protesters outside the new store on its opening day earlier this week was Ben Day, the council's new chairman.
Day said that he was there to support locally owned businesses, affordable housing and culturally appropriate food in Hyde Square.
The Gazette did not say when Day is planning protests outside the Rent-a-Center or CVS or whether he considers Scottish food culturally appropriate for Hyde Square.
The Dorchester Reporter notes that oon sent out a city-council endorsement e-mail from his new aerie in Washington that doesn't mention fl.
(This post originally appeared with graphics at bostonbastard.com)
Anytime there is a large enough crowd of people protesting long enough or in large enough numbers for the media to take more than a passing notice of, there is always pundits who criticize the protesters for not taking part in the electoral process.
It doesn’t matter that many who do protest also actually vote, nor does it manner that direct action can be more effective than the ballot box, there’s always a compulsion/borderline-addiction among those in the media to focus all of their coverage on what the protesters are doing wrong – which has been Fox 25 and the Boston Herald’s MO from the first day of Occupy Boston.
Bullshit aside, I figured it couldn’t hurt for the protesters who are registered Boston voters to know which At-Large City Council candidates are sympathetic to the cause and which ones are just half-assing a show of support because they’re too wimpy to come out against them.
Sean Ryan was the only candidate willing to offer any discussion on the campaign at Dewey Square, when directly contacted through email.
Both the Phoenix and the South End News have endorsed incumbent at-large councilors Connolly, Pressley and Arroyo. But the Phoenix endorsed incumbent Murphy because he "has made wise use of that position, while the News endorsed Flaherty because "the sheer volume of his past successes as a City Councilor, the important issues raised during his campaign for mayor, and his on-the-ground experiences as a life-long Bostonian make him ready and able to serve the city again.
Both papers had advice for their endorsees: The Phoenix told Murphy to concentrate on Boston instead of his quixotic bids for state office; the News told Flaherty to concentrate on specific programs rather than his two-year-old hatred of the mayor.
Bay Windows, owned by the same folks as the South End News, also endorsed Flaherty over Murphy, citing his strong support of the gay and transgender communities.
The Globe tags along with former City Councilor Michael Flaherty at a meet-and-greet at the Forest Hills T stop, where somebody asks him if he's really just running for mayor again.
Peter Gelzinis writes Flaherty's making a mistake thinking the road to the mayor's office is through the City Council chambers.
One man dared protect your children from FROZEN MEAT PATTIES.
Gin Dumcius reports that seems to be the gist of the mailer John Connolly just sent out:
In at-large race, Connolly sends out epic-looking mailer touting expired frozen food investigation. Mailer red and white front: "WARNING: Contents inside were not suitable for children. Until John Connolly Took Action"
David Bernstein reports on the battle between Frank Baker and John O'Toole to replace Maureen Feeney:
Defaced campaign offices, character-assassination calls to voters, destroyed lawn signs, intimidation, name-calling - the campaign has seen it all, just in the past couple of weeks.
At-large councilors Ayanna Pressley and John Connolly say a ban might have prevented the death of Gabriel Josh-Cazir Pierre, who died locked in an unattended van for several hours last month.
"It's very possible that someone might have seen Gabriel in that van and intervened," Pressley said at a council meeting today at which she held up a T-shirt emblazoned with Gabriel's photo. The ban is part of "Gabriel's Law," a series of proposals by his mother, Virginie Cazir, who lives in the same building as Pressley.
All other councilors signed up as co-sponsors of the proposal, which now goes before the council's committee on government operations for a formal hearing.
City Councilor Charles Yancey (Dorchester) said he hopes the hearing will expand to cover more general issues of day-care van safety.
The Daily Free Press reports on a forum for District 7 (Roxbury, Fenway) City Councilor Tito Jackson and challenger Sheneal Parker.
Both are running for a full term following Chuck Turner's federally sponsored exit from Massachusetts. Jackson was elected in a special election earlier this year.
Report from BNN:
West Roxbury Patch reports on a candidates' forum at the Deutsches Altenheim.
NorthEndWaterfront.com reports several state reps are shepherding an "emergency" bill that would, immediately on passage, let Boston and other communities ban overnight commercial trash pickups. Legislators consider the ide at a hearing on Oct. 18 at the State House, Room A-1, starting at 10 a.m.
The proposal, backed by, among others, Marty Walz (D-Back Bay) and Aaron Michlewitz, would dovetail with an effort by city councilors Felix Arroyo and Mike Ross to limit commercial pickups because of noise complaints in neighborhoods such as the North End, downtown and the Back Bay. Current state law prohibits such bans.
The Globe reports ticket topper John Connolly and cash-poor Ayanna Pressley have merged their campaign finances and begun campaigning together as they run for re-election for at-large City Council seats. For Pressley, the move means immediate resources; for Connolly, it means access to new constituencies should he ever run for another office.
Local unions came out swinging in favor of Occupy Boston today. At an afternoon rally, the final speaker wasCity Councilor Felix Arroyo, himself a former organizer for the SEIU. Afterwards, Arroyo was asked about Council President Steve Murphy's comments this morning that he's worried about an estimated $2-million-a-month cost for police overtime and about the arrival of "professional agitators."
Arroyo said he has not seen any figures from the police department yet on the costs of patrolling the occupation, or Murphy's comments, so he said he could not really comment on either.
But, Arroyo said, "The question is, though, what the cost is to the city if we don't change our economic practices now, what is the cost then and that's the lense I hope we [use to] look at this, to say what is the cost to all of us if we continue on this track, if we continue on the track where 99% of the population is essentially struggling and 1% has all our wealth."