The yr is near ending, however I can’t let Greenfield’s new authorities take the reins with out handing out a number of “Within the Area” Awards for the 2017 Greenfield election season.
The Donald Trump Award for questionable timing goes to Greenfield Mayor Invoice Martin, for the political sensible bomb he dropped on Council President Brickett Allis the Friday earlier than the election.
Martin says he issued the letter chastising Allis’ therapy of Police Chief Robbie Haigh on the first alternative awarded him, however the actuality is it may have waited till after the election. The truth that he selected to do it the Friday earlier than, and launch it to the press earlier than giving it to Allis, does appear considerably suspicious — particularly given the present management’s penchant for slicing his finances.
The Lee Atwater Award for the dirtiest political transfer goes to the nonetheless nameless writer of the web site: ToxicWoodcock.com.
The one-page website — which continues to be on the net as I’m penning this — popped up shortly earlier than the election in a transparent try to derail the College Committee candidacy of former Greenfield Excessive College Principal Donna Woodcock by questioning the circumstances behind Woodcock’s sudden retirement from the job a yr earlier.
There’s no solution to gauge what influence that website could have had the race, which Woodcock misplaced, however I’m guessing it didn’t assist Woodcock, who additionally confronted resistance from the Massachusetts Academics Affiliation, which overtly opposed her candidacy.
The Jesse Ventura Award for essentially the most uncooked post-election response goes to City Council Vice President Isaac Mass, who proclaimed on Fb mere moments after the polls closed that the election of a progressive majority signaled the return of a “rubber stamp” council.
One can perceive Isaac’s angst at seeing his candidates pummeled as they had been, however he is probably not as far off as one may suppose. Whereas it’s inconceivable to understand how any newly elected physique will govern, it’s a reasonably secure wager that this new council isn’t going to take the Ginsu to Mayor Martin’s subsequent capital and working budgets the way in which the Allis and Mass-led council did this previous yr. However will they actually give Martin the whole lot he needs? We’ll discover out in a number of months.
The John F. Kennedy awards for the perfect debate performances go to Precinct 7 Councilor-elect Otis Wheeler and newly re-elected At-Giant Councilor Penny Ricketts.
Wheeler appeared very considerate and knowledgeable in his solutions. He additionally jogs my memory of a youthful model of outgoing At-Giant Councilor Mark Maloni, a man who’s clearly liberal in his private beliefs, however appears keen to have a look at all sides of each subject. And Ricketts clearly has discovered her political voice, and was as poised and assured as I’ve ever seen her in that setting. She clearly realizes that it’s her time.
The Barack Obama Award for essentially the most promising political newcomer goes to new College Committee member-elect Katie Caron, who broke Ricketts’ two-election streak as the highest vote-getter by pulling in 1909 votes.
Caron’s stable debate efficiency little doubt helped, however I feel her enthusiasm and need to create the very best college system actually resonated with the voters. Although she may have a studying curve, I feel Caron could also be the perfect “new blood” candidate to come back alongside shortly.
The Bernie Sanders Award for essentially the most sudden second goes to Precinct 5 council candidate Marc Odato, for his choice to cite professional wrestler “Nature Boy” Ric Aptitude in one in every of his solutions in the course of the televised precinct discussion board.
I’m unsure if he did it for my profit, but it surely was a a lot welcome second of humor throughout a reasonably good efficiency by Odato, who clearly will not be the identical cat he was the final time he sat on that council. Hopefully, he finds one other solution to keep within the recreation, as a result of the city may positive use him.
The Sam Walton Award goes to Precinct eight council candidate Russell Johnson, for being the one one within the race to truly point out big-box retail, which clearly is now not the entrance burner subject it has been in years previous.
The Ted Kennedy Award for essentially the most constructive marketing campaign message goes to Precinct 7 council candidate Dan Viorel-Oros, who spoke at size about his need to be a pressure of compromise in an ideologically cut up council. It wasn’t sufficient to win him a seat, however the theme was appreciated, particularly given what we’ve seen lately from the outgoing council.
And the Hillary Clinton awards for the toughest working campaigns go to the Greenfield Democratic City Committee and Precinct eight councilor-elect Doug Mayo.
I’ve already identified on this area how energetic the DTC was in getting its slate of candidates elected, Mayo amongst them. However, I’m advised he actually beat the streets in his effort to win a seat on the desk, and a lot of the dems I’ve talked to look happiest about Mayo’s win, given how a lot he appeared to need it.
Hopefully, Mayo and all of his fellow workplace holders will retain that pleasure after the vacation buzz wears off, and the actual work of governing begins.
Both approach, it’s going to be a enjoyable experience.
Chris Collins is the Franklin County Information Bureau Chief for WHAI, WPVQ and WHMP Radio. He’s a former workers reporter for The Recorder, and is a Greenfield native.