In his budget presentation to the City Council and Everett School Committee last week, Mayor Carlo DeMaria sought to put city politics on the backburner, as he continued his policy of proposing improvements to city services and modernization and replacement of city equipment, as the underlying principal in his budget development.
The FY 2015 budget document includes proposals for several new positions in the city operating budget, as well as new equipment and technology upgrades across departments, all aimed at improving the city’s ability to provide services to its residents.
“While you review this proposed budget, please remember that it is a starting point that will allow us to engage in a collaborative effort toward the ultimate goal of a sustainable operating budget,” said Mayor DeMaria in his remarks “a budget that has been designed with the best interests of our citizens in mind.”
The FY 2015 actually proposes several new positions, but does so based on a review of city services that was conducted for Everett by the Edward Collins Center for Government at the University of Massachusetts Boston.
Collins Center study provided the city with several recommendations, which are raised in the budget document as examples of how to strategically improve delivery of municipal services through the addition of positions that can provide greater efficiency and expertise to city departments.
The new positions being proposed include: both a Business Manager and a Professional Engineer for the City Services Department; an Assistant Purchasing Agent/Asset Manager for the Purchasing Department; a Transportation Planner for Economic and Community Development; a Nutritionist for the Edward Connolly Center; a Trainer for the Recreation Department; and the formalization of the Constituent Services Department to include multi-lingual greeter positions to assist residents seeking assistance in city hall.
The budget also includes several capital improvement items such as the replacement of vehicles and equipment in the police, fire and city services departments, maintenance to parks and tot lots, information technology upgrades to city facilities to include server and infrastructure upgrades and the upgrade or replacement of city computer work stations.
There is also an additional investment in school infrastructure including the replacement of the roof at the Webster School and the final phase of installation of smart boards in every classroom in the Everett school system.