February Newsletter from Lydia Edwards, City Councilor for District One (North End, Charlestown and East Boston):

The snow’s coming down this week, but spring is around the corner, and with it comes ample opportunity to get out and engaged in your community. Now, a little about what I’ve been up to: 

School transportation is an issue I’ve heard about from residents of every neighborhood in District One. I’ve called a hearing with Councilors Essaibi-George and Wu to review a host of school transportation issues, and I was proud to stand with parents from District One at the school committee this week to urge Boston Public Schools to clarify its efforts to improve school transportation. We’re also currently working through the budgetary process, which includes ample review of school transportation issues. Related to BPS, I am concerned that District One schools are facing significant budget cuts, the largest of which affect East Boston High, the Harvard Kent School and the Umana. Please stay tuned for upcoming announcements about city budget hearings

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My team is spending substantial time reviewing Suffolk Downs, a proposal that is going to impact all of Boston, and recruiting community leaders to join or lead discussions. Please come to a meeting to learn about and share your thoughts on the proposal. I’ll also be releasing more information soon about how the process works and an abbreviated summary of the proposal. It is absolutely essential for residents to share their views and questions.

This week, the council held a hearing I’d called with Councilor O’Malley and Councilor Wu on public investment through our pension fund and city treasury. My intent here is threefold: one, residents and taxpayers should know how we invest our money; two, we should develop and adopt socially responsible investment criteria to screen out harmful investments; and three, we should direct investment where possible toward public infrastructure or local community fund. (For an example of the latter, see the Ujima Project). We need to conscious of city budget and retirees during this process, but I’m confident we can make progress on this issue, starting first with regular investment disclosure.

Topics in this month’s newsletter include:

  • Affordable Housing Funding Grants
  • Nazzaro Center Landmark Study
  • North End Community Updates
  • Suffolk Downs Public Comment Period
  • Former Jeffries Point Neighborhood Association Co-Chair Scalfani Honored

Read more about these topics and see upcoming community meetings in the full newsletter.

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