City councilors Steve Murphy (at large) and Bill Linehan (South Boston, South End) today will propose setting a limit on how much a homeowner's property taxes can rise from one year to the next.
The two argue that residents in areas undergoing gentrification are being unduly burdened by the fact that as foreclosed and distressed properties get renovated, their property values - and so their property taxes - are going up too fast. In a request for a hearing on a "circuit breaker" provision, they add:
Increases in property tax bills being seen in the post-recession real estate market have not been fully matched by a bounce-back in the employment sector, making it difficult for many long-time homeowners to continue to afford their homes.
Their proposed limit would be on top of the tax break homeowners already get. They did not detail the potential costs to the city of their idea.
City Councilor Bill Linehan says some of his constituents stood in line for three or even four hours on Election Day, and he's not having it.
On Wednesday, the council considers his request for a hearing to figure out how to prevent the long lines he said became common in his district. In his request, Linehan says five precincts have 4,000 voters each - double the citywide average and nine times the size of the city's smallest precinct.
Linehan says he heard from one voter who got in line to vote at 6 p.m. and didn't finally cast his ballot until 10 p.m.
The City Council voted today to consider measures that would regulate so-called sober homes for recovering drug addicts and require pawn shops and other businesses that sell second-hand goods to tie into a Boston Police database of stolen property.
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.
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).
(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.
Mike Ball considers last night's results in District 2, which saw challenger Suzanne Lee of the South End top incumbent Bill Linehan of South Boston:
Like those inconsiderate schlubs who stroll slowly while jaywalking to inconvenience as many drivers as possible, some Boston neighborhoods love a sense of power. South Boston has been one, as in returning the dreadful bigoted Jim Kelly to this seat numerous times. He was obnoxious, inefficient and a true insult to the district outside of Southie. They did it because they could.
Linehan is much more low-key and doesn't exhibit the worst of Kelly's traits, certainly not the anti-gay stance that Kelly finally recanted when he was dying. Yet, despite the incumbent's drabness, there is a clear choice here. Lee is an achiever, an idea and action person, with specific programs and goals to improve the lives of those in the district and whole city.
Incumbent Bill Linehan will share a room with challengers Suzanne Lee and Bob Ferrara on Sept. 13 in a forum sponsored by the Blackstone/Franklin Square Neighborhood Association
City Councilors Bill Linehan and Felix Arroyo said tonight they may try to get an amendment to a current state law that keeps the city from taking over private South End alleyways because they're too narrow to comply with modern public road requirements.
Suzanne Lee, former principal at the Josiah Quincy School, said today she's running for the District 2 council seat held by Bill Linehan:
I've dedicated my entire adult life to making things better for the community, by bringing people together to solve problems. As City Councilor I aim to bring my passion for activism, my commitment to public education, and my ability to solve problems to make Boston a place where all working families can have affordable housing, decent jobs, and thriving neighborhoods.
Earlier this year, Lee helped organize an effort to restore a branch library to Chinatown.
The daughter of immigrants, Lee grew up in Grove Hall, went to Girl's Latin (now Boston Latin Academy) and became the first person in her family to attend college. She spent 35 years as an educator in the Boston school system.
Lee said she's already raised $24,000 for her bid to unseat Linehan for the right to represent South Boston, the South End and Chinatown.
District 2 Boston City Councilor Bill Linehan is proposing a "No Tow" street-cleaning program for South Boston, according to a press release issued by his office quoted on the Fort Point Blog.
City Councilor Bill Linehan and the Boston Transportation Department will hold three community meetings in South Boston to discuss the Councilor’s proposed ‘No Tow’ Street Cleaning Program. Under the program, towing will be suspended and violators will receive a $100 ticket in the South Boston neighborhood.
The program would be instituted solely in South Boston, at least at first.
In a separate press release, the councilor recommends the program saying it will increase compliance while offering a more "green" alternative to towing.
Under the program, all revenue would be returned to the city versus the way it is now, with some (much?) of the revenue being shared with the private towing companies.
Times and dates of the three public meetings can be found on the Fort Point Blog.
City Councilors Steve Murphy (at large) and Bill Linehan (South Boston, South End), plan a hearing to explore how to build a movie studio in Boston. Local movie production companies, the Mass. Convention Center, the Mayor's Film Bureau and the state Film Office would also be asked to participate.
A private company is currently building a movie and TV production complex in Plymouth.
South Boston's Bill Linehan would instead increase tickets to $100.
On Switchback, Bill picks up on something in that recently released proposal for improving Boston Common: That city councilors Mike Ross, Bill Linehan and Sal LaMattina really wish the MBTA would stop with all this nonsense about putting a Silver Line tunnel under the park. They write:
The Silverline project will rip up the entire stretch of the Common along Charles Street for up to 10 years, for the staging area for heavy equipment. It will snarl traffic as they close a lane for the construction of a new tunnel, and it will make an entire stretch of the Common nearly unusable during that time. All of this will be done for the purpose of putting in bus transit that is unnecessary, when tunnels already exist for light rail, and when it is nearly universally agreed that the bus system as set up does not work, and is not nearly as effective or efficient as light rail.
The Silverline Project is a mistake. The plans in place will disturb sacred grounds, such as the historic graveyard. Unused light rail tunnels already exist below ground, and the MBTA, with its multimillion dollar deficit, should be looking at ways it can build a system around what is there, and ensuring that we have opportunities to become a greener, more efficient city while not tearing up our precious parks system during the construction.
Ed. note: The T has a multi-billion dollar deficit.
Hi. My name is Reuben, and I am Boston City Councilor Mike Ross's Chief of Staff.
Mike and I have read with interest the writings regarding the Boston Common on these pages. We are energized to see so many people who are as interested in the future of the Common as we are.
At Boston Daily, Mike has posted his Ross Report on the topic. We are excited about a number of the proposals that we'll have in this report, and wanted to clear up a few misconceptions.
Chris Lovett runs the numbers on yesterday's preliminary city-council election in District 2. He notes that the candidate who got the most votes in South Boston (Ed Flynn) won't be in the May final, while Bill Linehan, who will be, was the winner in Chinatown's largest precinct. Linehan will face off against the South End's Susan Passoni. Whoever wins will have to run again in this fall's regular council election.