Letter to the Editor

November 2, 2018
By

City Council Meeting was a circus

To the Editor:

Having been a City Councillor for four years prior to be on the Council now, I’ve never seen anything like this meeting we had on Monday.  I feel bad for the residents and people attending and watching on TV.

It’s like a Barnum and Bailey Circus.

We as Councillors are here to vote on issues affecting the City of Chelsea, not to bash one another.

Councillors may not know all the rules and regulations, but we have access to the Roberts Rules book and a city lawyer to answer any questions we may not know.

If Councillors don’t get along or have an issue with each other it should be taken outside or in a closed door to iron out their problems – not at a City Council meeting.

Monday’s meeting was mostly about the 10 percent water bill discount given to owner-occupied single, two, three-family residents along with owner occupied condo units, but does not include those owner-occupied condos on a separate water meter.

Both sides of residents spoke out for and against this order, which was repealed by a Council vote and being brought to the table at a later date of a subcommittee meeting to discuss the ramifications this may or may not cause.

Some people were very upset of this, but even we City Councillors don’t know what the actual cost is that will affect our budget. The City Manager estimates between $400,000 to $500,000 which does not include and looking into adding condos with one meter. This could really escalate and cost the city a lot of money.

One Councillor feels we give money to other organizations and not enough to the residents of Chelsea. They say we give TIFs to the FBI building, the hotels and other business and residents should get more.

I do believe as a City Councillor and a resident of Chelsea maybe we should get more form the City, but how much is enough. And yes we give to certain organizations, if this is a complaint then maybe the ones that keep saying people can’t afford to live here then take away the money from all these organizations that do so much that helps so many people in Chelsea.

Do you want to see millions of dollars taken away from the School Department that educates your children to receive a tax break on your water bill?

Like I said before, don’t get me wrong, but if we are going to do this, it has to be done right for all owners and it has to be discussed thoroughly.  We should not have jumped in without legal representation, and we should have discussed it with all appropriate parties involved.

What some of us tend to forget that the jobs we have created for Chelsea residents and the tax money the City receives in order to give residents tax abatement and a no trash fee.  We receive a meal tax, room and board and don’t forget real estate tax from the hotels.

I don’t know about other Councillors, but I will and still try to do my very best to do what’s right for the residents and the City of Chelsea.  So don’t give up; Monday’s ruling on the water bill discount was just sent to a sub-committee meeting to see how and what can be done for all residents to get some type of relief from the MWRA and the City of Chelsea concerning water bills.

I know there can be difficult times out there, but Chelsea has come a long way from years past and will still strive to be the great city that it is today.

So hang in there and keep the faith.

Councillor

Joe Perlatonda