Mayor Carlo DeMaria is to be commended for establishing a task force to review both the City and School Department budgets. Mayor DeMaria is also to be congratulated for attracting the high caliber of people who are leaders in both the private and public financial sector to undertake this fiscal review.
The new Task Force members are:
Samuel Tyler, President of the Boston Municipal Research Bureau; Dr. Dwayne Thomas, of Thomas Leadership Solutions; Jon Fullerton, Executive Director of the Center for Education Policy Research at Harvard University and Barry Sloane, President and CEO of Century Bank.
While no committee can wave a wand and miraculously solve any crisis, this Task Force is a good start on taking a look at what could be some problems in these budgets, and offer recommendations to fix the problems.
And recommendations are the key function of this task force. They are offering only ideas on how to avoid another possibly divisive meeting like the one that happened last week where there was only confrontation, not cooperation.
Everett residents and taxpayers should be proud of the financial condition of the City, where in the middle of a fiscal year, the City can afford a $5 million bailout that can be given to the schools. In most of the cities and towns in Massachusetts that are the size of Everett, this type of bailout could never take place without jeopardizing the bond rating.
Everett’s great bond rating will continue at its favorable level to insure that projects that need to be funded like new schools, public housing developments, roads and parks can be bonded at advantageous interest rates, saving Everett taxpayers millions of dollars in interest fees.
We encourage our readers to read the story on Page 1 about the Task Force, and we encourage all city officials to look at the recommendations when they are issued. Different ideas and solutions to problems from informed and educated sources is what everyone wants – isn’t it?