The City of Everett’s elected leaders will be facing a tough year ahead as the economic downturn will continue to affect the local economy and the city budget.
Every elected official has acknowledged that the 2011 budget that takes effect on July 1 will be leaner and more difficult to fund than the 2010 budget.
Mayor Carlo DeMaria hinted at this fact in his inauguration address on Monday. He said he will be reducing the budget without reducing city services.
This is a difficult balancing act to master, especially as local aid from the state will probably be cut again as state revenues are likely to continue to fall short.
However, the mayor has shown a strong hand in keeping Everett solvent and viable.
He has outlined some of his goals for the coming two years that would include acquiring 40 new solar power trash receptacles for the business districts; working with local organizations like the Boys and Girls Club to help Everett youth; taking advantage of state and federal grants to help Everett residents from the oldest to the youngest like grants to educate the public of the dangers of smoking and the refurbishment of Everett Stadium with the field turf as well as fitness facilities for all ages to use and lastly addressing the issue of the city’s need for accurate water meters.
He also said that he will continue to wage war on illegal rooming houses that he calls a blight on the community.
He promised to maintain the quality education that has become a source of Everett pride serving almost 6,000 students this year.
Lastly, he promised to attract new investment like Berkeley Development that will be building 200,000 square feet of office space along the riverfront. DeMaria also promised to try to make Everett recognized as an Industrial Area that will attract new industries and jobs.
All of these goals can be attained if everyone works together and if enough timing and good luck exists to have all the pieces fall into place.
The mayor has shown week after week that he respects and is respected by members of the Common Council and Board of Aldermen.
This fact is perhaps the greatest resource that the City of Everett has going for it as we continue to sail through these troubled fiscal times.
We encourage all members of both branches to continue the practice of the last two years that had Everett weather an almost $4M cut in state aid without this money being shifted by putting it on the backs of the taxpayers.
This is the key to a solvent city and to a steady tax rate.