The rain didn’t stop Mayor Carlo DeMaria or more than 150 of his supporters from hosting an enthusiastic opening of his 143 Main Street campaign office last Saturday, April 17, announcing the campaign focus to be ‘Everett for Everyone’ – a slogan that was colorfully painted on the front window of the campaign office last week.
In an emotional speech to a large crowd, Mayor DeMaria said he wanted the campaign to be a grass-roots effort with himself and supporters hitting the streets and neighborhoods to talk to residents in a COVID-safe manner about the issues in the City. He stressed that the campaign would focus on inclusivity and Everett’s long past of welcoming new residents in a melting pot – proclaiming the campaign to be “Everett for Everybody.”
The decision to run again was not an easy one, nor has it been for any elected official who has weathered the strains of leading in the COVID-19 era. He said he talked about it with his family, and particularly with his wife, Stacy, who he said has supported him from day one. In the end, it was a family decision, he said, and he said it was based on their love for the City of Everett and the work that has been done – noting past accomplishments and looking toward future plans.
DeMaria said he doesn’t believe the work he set out to do as mayor is complete yet. He spoke about everything from continuing Everett’s unique municipally-run vaccination clinics at the former Pope John High School to seeing the affordable housing project through at that same former Pope John High School.
Some of his priorities include ushering in more affordable housing, including the project at Pope John; advancing construction on the Northern Strand Bike Path extension; and continuing to improve transit/transportation. In terms of COVID-19 responses, he said they continue to feed many people daily after one year, and also the desire to get everyone vaccinated in the City before the end of 2021.
Additionally, the mayor said he would be submitting a Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) to the Council soon that includes ambitious projects like rehabilitating the Everett Police Station and seeking funding to look at re-locating City Hall. The mayor has long-said as early as last year that if he were elected to another term, he would like to re-purpose the existing City Hall for community space, affordable non-profit space and even housing for homeless families in transition. He would like to see City Hall scaled down and relocated to a smaller building that is more efficient.
Finally, Mayor DeMaria said he is looking forward to continuing his new role as a voting member of the School Committee. As a graduate of Everett Public Schools, and a current parent of one child in the schools, he said there is so much he would like to do for the schools and the students moving forward.
Running a campaign in the era of COVID-19 will be new and challenging, but the DeMaria Campaign said it would be focused on meeting people where they are comfortable. The intend to go door-to-door and talk to people in a safe manner, but also if people aren’t comfortable opening the door – they will leave ways to contact the campaign online or by phone.
Mayor DeMaria has served three, two-year terms, and is currently in the last year of his second, four-year term.