Mayoral candidate Kevin McCrea posts a copy of a letter that would seem to indicate Allston/Brighton City Councilor Mark Ciommo managed to convince at-large Councilor (and mayoral candidate) Sam Yoon to "scale back" a proposed hearing order on Boston College's expansion plans. Ciommo had promised to recuse himself from BC deliberations because his son got a scholarship there.
Harry Mattison posts Ciommo's reply:
... I have not contradicted any aspects of my disclosure form.
Councilor Yoon approached me to co-sponsor a late-file Order for a Hearing regarding the BRA process with Boston College's [institutional master plan]. I provided him with my feedback that I supported several components of the Order for a Hearing, but that I thought that some of the language was inaccurate. I also felt that some of the language was politically charged.
My intent was to remove politics from the discussion and focus on the BRA process. I think the end result was a more productive hearing. ...
Sam Yoon, speaking to a group of bloggers tonight, says he would start a formal process to changing the city's current strong-mayor system.
Yoon says city government under the control of a "strong" mayor is not working and that after 100 years of the system, it's time for a more democratically run city.
A charter commission would take 12 to 18 months to recommend changes to the city charter - essentially, its constitution.
Charter reform "is something I'm really excited about," he says. "We haven't had a real debate about our charter since 1909. ... I think it's worth absolutely working on. Does [the current system] really fit way our city is in the 21st century. No other city works like this."
He took it on a tour of the neighborhoods in his last campaign and it wound up getting crushed by a garbage truck in Dorchester by mistake:
The Globe acknowledges Boston public schools are better than they were when Menino first took office, but details why they're nowhere near as good as they should be.
Menino supporter this afternoon at Gallivan Boulevard and Adams Street in Dorchester.
The Globe reports that city programs intended to get small pieces of land back on the tax rolls by selling them to neighbors have meant profits for at least two landowners in Jamaica Plain - just like mayoral hopeful Kevin McCrea said. The city calls these "oversights."
The Building and Construction Trades Council of the Metropolitan District, known as the Boston Building Trades, today announced their endorsement of Tom Menino for re-election:
We are confident that your dedication and efforts for the residents of Boston will continue. We will continue to stand with you and your commitment to making Boston one of the best cities to live and work in.
David Bernstein does the honors (this one isn't on TV).
What follows are my notes on the debate tonight. Props to Jon Keller for coming up with a form that allowed for an actual debate, rather than one of those stilted side-by-side affairs where the candidates never really address each other. Although with four people running, an hour was too short.
Who won? I'm terrible at judging things like that. At times, it seemed like a debate between Menino, Yoon and McCrea, with Flaherty on the sidelines. Yoon seemed too focused on Menino as the leader of SPECTRE, McCrea seemed too focused on getting the other three indicted, and Menino veered from the question sometimes (like answering some question about city finances by talking about how diverse city commissions are). But if you watched it, what do you think?
The mayoral campaigns organized standouts outside WBZ studios in advance of tonight's debate.
Menino and Flaherty supporters were out in force along both sides of Soldiers Field Road. Scores of them and they just kept coming.
Some Yoon kids and grandparents showed up relatively late and never tried to muscle into the fray - maybe the beefy union workers for the Flaherty and Menino campaigns scared them, so they stayed clumped together more than a block away. They did have cute little maraca-like shaker things - which were completely inaudible to anybody driving by, unlike the air horns that a number of Flaherty men blared.
McCrea people? When we left, around 5:20, we hadn't seen a single one (and we walked up and down the road a couple of times). Maybe they got stuck in traffic on the way over from the South End.
EatBoston asks the four candidates for mayor about their favorite foods and restaurants.
Tonight on WBZ (TV and Radio) at 7:00pm is the first Boston Mayoral debate. First chance to see all of the candidates on stage together in what could be the most lively debate based on Jon Keller's format.
Blogging during the debate anyone?
From Blue Mass. Group: Boston Mayoral Debate Tonight
John Keith e-mails from DotOut's mayoral forum tonight:
Guy from Dorchester stood up and said the Mayor was getting a free pass from [the gay and lesbian] community, that he doesn't march [in the Southie parade] but walks down the side of the street. The Mayor shouted out "that's a lie and you know it!" Then the guy said "wow, that's the first time I've been called a liar by a mayoral candidate" and the Mayor responded "because that's what you are!"
Ed. question: Anybody know who's right?
The Dorchester Reporter folks are livetweeting the Dotout forum, like, right this second, at least, as I type this.
It only took 13 years or so, but the Globe finally got around to writing a story about the personal dictatorship of Caudillo and aspiring Mayor for Life Thomas Menino.
David Bernstein is put out that Sam Yoon and Michael Flaherty both used "Shipping Up to Boston" on their music face-off today on WFNX:
... Maybe [Yoon] was trying to be funny, using the Dropkicks to beat the Irishman. I don't know; all I know is that they USED THE SAME GODDAM SONG!!!!! ...
Adam Pieniazek reviews Michael "Menino's a Walkman and I'm an iPod" Flaherty's social-media strategy, gives him a big Fail; in fact, he says ol' fuddy-duddy Menino is using Twitter better:
... What's worse, is that Flaherty doesn't understand a relatively simple piece of technology like Twitter. What does it mean when the 80's cell-phone uses a new piece of technology better than the iPhone? ...
Mayoral candidate Sam Yoon wants City Hall to take a page from banks and stay open past normal business hours at least once a week so people who work for a living could have a chance to conduct city business. In a statement, he says:
One of the most appealing solutions is to shift hours to offer later services on Wednesday and close earlier on Fridays. We would stay open until 8:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and close at 2:30 p.m. on Fridays. We would also be able to move the regular City Council meetings to Wednesday evening to allow more people to attend.