The Quincy Sun, a legendary paper in Quincy, announced my candidacy today. It was thrilling for me. This campaign has been real for me for a couple months, but today was special.
I hope you'll allow me to cheat with this blog post. I'm working on a couple different topics for in-depth articles like you've seen with my sanctuary city post and mbta post, but I'm still collecting data and writing.
Today, I'm going to make it easy for you to read the statement I submitted to Mr. Bosworth of The Quincy Sun. If you are local, I encourage you to pick up a copy of the paper, It is organized and presented much better there.
It is my candidacy in a nutshell and I'm happy to share my thoughts as I presented them to the paper.
My name is Joe Murphy and I am running to be Quincy’s Ward One City Councilor. My campaign is about enriching life in Quincy, encouraging innovation, reducing waste, and facilitating productive partnerships between the government and private enterprise. My ideas would better the lives of the people of Ward One and Quincy as a whole.
Originally born in Philadelphia, I discovered the Boston area when I attended the Berklee College of Music. After graduating, I moved out to Los Angeles to be a professional musician. I worked as an orchestrator, arranger, and copyist on dozens of major motion pictures, albums, variety shows, and several seasons of American Idol. I was director of Quincy Jones' Score Library and was a union rep for the Los Angeles chapter of the American Federation of Musicians, Local 47. While in LA, I met my wife, Cheryl, a New England native.
Cheryl and I left LA in 2007 when she was accepted to a graduate program at Emerson College. With any community around Boston to choose from, we chose Quincy to be our home. We rented apartments in Quincy Point while starting our family, and then purchased our own home in Houghs Neck in 2012.
Since coming to Quincy, I have worked at MIT and I am currently Assistant Director for Administration at MIT's Center for Bits and Atoms. My responsibilities encompass all operational management, from budgeting and grant supervision to intellectual property and corporate sponsor relationships.
With my job at MIT, two energetic young daughters, and an old house that is constantly calling for attention, it would have been easy to sit on the sidelines a bit longer. But I was inspired to get involved by some recent developments:
Quincy is in the midst of a huge revitalization. We are seeing unprecedented investment by the city and by real estate developers. In the past several years we have seen our hospital shut down, the last remaining theater gone, and Quincy Center's MBTA parking garage sitting condemned and abandoned for five years. We are building new schools because the population demands it, but what is being added to enrich our cultural fabric?
If we are not careful, we could wake up to find a city completely stuffed with high-end apartments, some restaurants, no parking, and absolute gridlock. Quincy needs to not just make room for housing, it needs to also attract businesses and organizations that enhance the life here. I will meet with any real-estate developer to discuss their plans, but I will not be accepting contributions from developers in this campaign.
Now that Quincy is revitalizing, the MBTA has deemed us worthy of some long-needed attention. They are spending $100s of millions to refurbish all four Quincy stations in parallel, with seemingly little regard for the impact on residents. If elected, I will work to check the MBTA and make sure that the T’s budgets and convenience are not prioritized over the needs of Quincy's residents.
My vision for Quincy embraces innovation by fostering makerspaces, tool-shares, and science concerns so our citizens can fabricate locally while thinking entrepreneurially. We need to improve our technological infrastructure and bring fiber internet options to Quincy. We can have faster internet at competitive pricing. Then I want to facilitate partnerships with our city’s artists and use their talents to improve the quality of life with theater, art, music, and creativity. These ideas can be revenue-neutral by partnerships with small business and organizations whenever possible rather than asking for taxpayer handouts.
Let’s support our law enforcement and immigrant population alike by adopting a “sanctuary/welcoming” designation. I want our first-responders, who risk everything, to know that the satellite emergency room can handle trauma and will remain open permanently. We will make their lives and ours easier by making the streets traversable with enforced parking laws and an improved snow removal plan.
To protect our environment, we should stop big-box retailers from obscenely throwing away unopened product that could be donated to local charities. We need to expand the rain-barrel program, ban single-use plastic bags, and offer free lead tests to qualifying homeowners to make Quincy water the first lead-free supply in Massachusetts.
At this pivotal point in Quincy's development, we need fresh leadership with a view towards making Quincy a complete city. It is a time of great investment, but it is not time to let real estate developers and the MBTA cash-in at the expense of Quincy's citizens.
I look forward to meeting you all and hope we can work together to make Quincy's revitalization citizen-focused. Please reach out to me with your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more about me and my vision for Quincy visit www.votejoemurphy.com and @votejoemurphy on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.