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Category Archives: Springfield City Council

Is This the Springfield Council’s Year of the Woman?…

UPDATED 2:15PM: To include comments from Councilor Whitfield. SPRINGFIELD—With the sun setting and not quite 48 hours to go until the polls closed, Kelli Moriarty-Finn gathered supporters at a stately Atwater Park home to rally the troops. A fixture in the area neighborhood association, she


Take My Council, Please: Thank You for Your Service…

SPRINGFIELD—In its last full meeting before the November 5 election, the Council tackled principally financial items. More contentious ordinances and interventions, many of which were sent to committee at the last few meetings, remain on the backburner. Instead, grants, perks and tax breaks were on


Take My Council, Please: Money…It’s Gas (for Civic Participation)?

SPRINGFIELD—Once again, the City Council logged some mileage to get through the agenda. This past Monday, it was worth it. More than a dozen items were approvals of recommendations from the Community Preservation Committee (CPC), the panel that develops spending plans under the state Community


Take My Council, Please: Enemies of the Good…

SPRINGFIELD—Queasiness about the city’s marijuana process had seemed set to dominate Monday’s meeting of the City Council. However, ratification of the first four host community agreements (HCA) flew by with little trouble. Instead, the struggle to reform police oversight stormed back to the fore, exposing


Bending the Arc of a City’s Moral Universe: Michaelann Bewsee 1947-2019…

Injustice had no greater foe in the City of Springfield than Michaelann Bewsee. After co-founding what would become the city’s feistiest community organization, Arise for Social Justice, Bewsee contributed to innumerable battles for equality and fairness. She embraced the city’s cultural mosaic without losing sight


Take My Council, Please: Learning from Historical Precedent…

SPRINGFIELD—The legislative sausage-making continued for another meeting of the City Council Monday. A veto override, regulations for vehicles of all shapes and sizes, and historic preservation were all on the menu. Virtually all went by without incident or political indigestion, even the much-awaited Election Notification


Take My Council, Please: Electoral Dysfunction, Not Normal in Any Age…

SPRINGFIELD—A proposed effort to bolster voter turnout here, if not cure its anemic state, cleared the City Council Monday night. The victory was short-lived. Mayor Domenic Sarno quickly vetoed the measure, offering a garbled explanation. However, it would not be his nonsensical valley this week.


Take My Council, Please: Making a City (More) Fully Elect…

SPRINGFIELD—Past, present and future orbited around two major items at the City Council’s Monday meeting. The body passed first step on an ordinance to step up election education notifications. It also reallocated $1.5 million from bonds to finance upgrades to Symphony Hall, nee the Municipal

Council chambers

Zen and the Art of Making Law (on the Police Commission)…

This post is the first of two on police oversight solutions city officials have proposed. SPRINGFIELD—For well over a decade, city councilors have grappled with how to structure the Police Department leadership. The Control Board’s abolition of the Police Commission in 2005 was among its