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Olympics-friendly council president sets up Olympics committee, leaves off councilor who wants to know what residents really think

City Council President Bill Linehan said today he'll chair a special committee to look at how Boston can host the 2024 Summer Olympics.

To join him, Linehan chose councilors Mark Ciommo (Allston/Brighton), Frank Baker (Dorchester), Tito Jackson (Roxbury), Tim McCarthy (Hyde Park, Roslindale, Mattapan), Michelle Wu (at large), and Matt O’Malley (West Roxbury, Jamaica Plain).

Missing is Councilor Josh Zakim Beacon Hill, Back Bay, Fenway, Mission Hill), author of a proposal for referendum questions this fall asking Boston residents whether the city should host the Olympics at all, and, if so, spend any money on the games.

In a statement today, Linehan said:

Some of the issues the Committee will investigate include insuring the community process is open to all; the economic impact of hosting the Summer Olympic Games for the City of Boston; and what effect hosting the Olympic Games will have on the City’s neighborhoods.

However, Linehan took a pro-Olympics view:

Boston does not need the games, but I have to ask the question ‘Why can’t we host the games?’ The City of Boston has a strong Olympic legacy. American athletes from Boston led the charge to victory at the first modern Olympics in Athens, Greece in 1896.

In addition, the Olympic Marathon distance run in 1896 was emulated in Boston the following year in 1897, and has evolved into what we all have come to know and love as 'The Boston Marathon,' a tribute to the first games that continues to this day.

I believe we need to look hard at our ability and capacity, and execute our goals with the intention of being Boston Strong.

The first meeting of Linehan's committee is 10:30 a.m. on Friday in the council's fifth-floor chambers in City Hall. The first people asked to speak before the committee: Boston 2024 organizers.

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Comments

Seriously, Bill. Going to lead us all by the nose with that "Boston Strong" throw-in? What's your trump card when we push back now?

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Hey Bill, "This is our f__king city."

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Papi was born in DR and lives in Weston.

Weston Strong!

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to push his agenda should afford him a swift kick to the nuts, assuming he has any.

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Bill Linehan is outdated. Time for him to retire and for us to bring in some new blood with fresh ideas.

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are we really surprised Zakim was left out? Not really..

They are trying to push this down our throats as much as possible with as little friction.

Sad to say that as time goes on, we really are going to get this huge waste of resources and tax payer money whether we like it or not..

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...and then, there shall be protests. They have been quite lucky with the weather so far.

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City Council President Linehan hides Council Public Records, for example a) the District maps that clearly delineate the names of the bordering streets of the Districts, b) the Plain Text Steno Records of Public Meetings, c) the Full Text of Captions for hard of hearing & for ESL English as a Second Language folks from Webcasts of Public Meetings of Boston City Council. Councilor Wu would be a better Council President
http://www.opengovpartnership.org/

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Don, you know that if any City Council President released "Plain Text Steno Records" he or she would be in violation of state law.

Of course, I also think that Wu could do better than City Council President, but who knows.

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How's that then?

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How does that violate the law? Sincere ignorance here.

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Chapter 447 of the Acts of 1947 bars the production and dissemination of the debates of the Boston City Council. Just Boston. Weird, huh. And it would take a state law, not just the decision of the Council, to change that.

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... could ask the legislature to repeal this idiotic provision -- and can be twitted for not doing so....

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And the odds are that the Great and General Court would have no problem repealing this, because it is nothing controversial like the state rock song.

Of course, I envision a state rep from Cambridge, on behalf of a constituent, submitting a bill and working doggedly to get it passed so that the residents of Cambridge could read the verbatim record of the debates of the Boston City Council.

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Looks like Rep. Cabral from Fall River tried to repeal that provision last year if you google it.

The intent of that law at the time was probably to prevent the publishing of the actual debate statements so producing the stenographic record might very well violate it whereas just having minutes doesn't. I'd guess that just having closed captioning on the video of live proceedings is probably fine. Kind of a silly distinction but the law was written long before live broadcasts of these proceedings were envisioned. Either way, who would enforce this anyway? The Council could but if they voluntarily produce the record, then they're not gonna go against themselves.

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they should ask the Legislature to repeal the idiotic provisions that mandate that nearly everything and anything a city or town wants to do must go through the Great and General Court" first. For that matter, perhaps the Governor should step in and abolish this practice once and for all.

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I think all the text of this law bars is that the debates be published at city expense.

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You might want to look up who helped Linehan retain his seat as council president.

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I just twittered Wu, Pressley, Zakim, and O'Malley. Ms. Wu replied

Very sorry taking so long- we are waiting for system upgrade to pull closed captioning transcripts from video.

Good grief, praise to the women, for being proactive!

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Bear in mind that Councilor Wu was the deciding vote to Linehan into his current spot as Council President and prevented Pressley or someone more progressive from holding it.

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Thanks, Bill, but the bill put forward by Councilor Zakim would require a referendum to appear on this fall's ballot.

No mention of that, at all?

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That's a real shame. I'm actually really liking Counciler Zakim and think he's a well-balanced, fair individual.

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The only other candidate we had in the last two elections was Lee. Between her and Linehan I tossed a coin. I'm hoping the next person to run against him listens to the people in his district. So far he's done a good job of ignoring us.

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a) What are the names of the boundary streets of the City Council District 2 that includes Boston Chinatown?... Or b) where is a map of Council District Two that indicates the names of the boundary streets clearly?...

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People smoking crack make more sense than him!!

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Somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, but the Boston Marathon is not a tribute to the ancient Greek Olympics but to the 25ish-mile run by a Greek messenger from a battle with the Persians to Athens (upon the completion of which he dropped dead).

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...and queer olympics
http://www.gaygames.org/

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I'm not totally versed in marathon history, but I know that the runner (Phidipedes, I think, but spelling completely wrong) did not drop dead after running from Marathon to Athens. After all, people run that amount often, many times a year, and lots of them (cf Boston, New York, Marine, London, etc. marathons) As I (vaguely) recall (and am too lazy to verify right now) the issue was that he then ran on to Sparta, an additional 140+ miles, without stopping, and then keeled over.

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...there won't be any of those communist bike lanes going to that new olympic stadium in southie!

not on bill's watch!

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There won't be room for any bike lanes in the city after the IOC once again demands they get a special travel lane just for their limos.

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if the city is so foolish as to create them.

(Any idea if this happened in London?)

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Can we not get a credible and intelligent candidate for this seat? The tragedy is that in addition to his shoddy representation of anywhere but his core Southie constituents, this coat holder for Jim Kelly has made taking a City paycheck his only job, working his way from running the Parks Department all the way to Council President, where he promptly tried to give himself and the others a 29% pay raise (from $87.5k to $112.5K). Now he'll sell us all out to make sure the Boston 2024 team along with the City get to waste a fortune on a 14 day boondoggle while ignoring the many real issues we have.

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Who are potential Candidates that might consider Campaigning for Council District 2 ?...

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..

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Another vote for zak. Yay!

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That deals with snow removal,
One that deals with Public Transportation
One that deals with Pot Holes
One that deals with gang violence
One that deals with rent control
One that deals with tow truck scams
One that deals with uber shakedowns
You know the type of issues they all ran on to get elected

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And they hold regular meetings. In fact, there's a hearing of one of them this week on MBTA issues (let me know if you need the date and time, because I'm sure you'll drop everything to attend).

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The Notes/protoMinutes from the Hearings are Public Record. Notes can be requested via
http://muckrock.com

or
http://www.cityofboston.gov/contact/?id=12

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Out of curiosity have you been to any/all of these meetings?
I'm thinking about starting a blog for my area called "My Favorite Pot Holes".

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But not any recently - I'm more of a wait-until-it-gets-to-the-full-council kind of guy these days.

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So the committee looking into how to host the Olympics should include someone who doesn't want to hold them? Those views should be included and voiced (like at the meetings the anti-olympics people held and the community meetings) but having people who don't want something involved in planning how to plan for them seems like it would lead to sabotage. How many people who would like to stop having the Boston Marathon are on the committee that plans the marathon?

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He's come out in favor of non-binding referendum questions. Not exactly the same.

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If the public is, at best, split on whether the city should host, wouldn't the City Council be better served to have a committee to simply evaluate the proposal, which matches the indecision of their constituents vs. starting from the viewpoint of how to make this happen?

The City Council is by design and powers a reactive body - it has no ability to lead, either technically or actually so why waste everyones time with this approach?

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I've got no juice with Linehan, but McCarthy is my councilor. I just emailed him and asked him to do what he can to keep this from being a steamroll. It's not much, but if we all email our district councilors and say that we care about this issue and we vote, they have to pay attention. Right?

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Honestly I don't think they care all that much what people really think.. they have been bought and sold by the IOC and USOC.

But if it works, great. I'm starting to have little faith that any politician will be against this...

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If politicians here aren't listening, go over their heads.

Write directly to the IOC, say you're from Boston and you think the Olympics being in Boston would be a huge mistake. Outline every objection you can imagine.

If, say, a thousand actual postal letters arrive at IOC headquarters, saying the Olympics in Boston will be a failure and a blot on the Olympic name, it MIGHT make a difference. Ten thousand would sink it.

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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In Burlington, VT, when I was a kid, business owners used to buy homeless people out of the city, paying for their one-way bus or train ticket to leave town.

Can we do this with Linehan? Can we all put in to move him to Ireland?

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I DON'T CARE ABOUT THE SUMMER OLYMPICS ANYMORE!!!! I'm shuddering at the prospect of years of headaches for one lousy fortnight of sports that no one cares about in between Olympiads. There was a time when the Olympics had a captive audience on ABC and you remembered the Mary Lou Rettons and the Carl Lewises, etc. I'm just not interested anymore, and I pray that Boston is the first city cut by the IOC. Let's turn this on its head and be the first to bribe the IOC NOT to choose us.

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