SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Opinion

September 6, 2013

Benton: Baker should focus on Dems' tax votes

(Continued)

Columnist Yvonne Abraham asked the candidates for mayor of Boston to pick their favorite mayors, and John Barros chose the person Abraham described as “the hotshot mayor of Salem.” Others named were current mayor Tom Menino and predecessors Kevin White and Ray Flynn.

Others were from cities elsewhere in the country, and one even named a former mayor of Haifa, Israel. But other than Menino, Driscoll was the only Massachusetts politician mentioned.

You can be sure the story got more than a few mentions at the following morning’s Democratic Labor Day breakfast in Boston.

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The pushback against a major new commercial development at the intersection of Route 128 and Brimbal Avenue in Beverly is hardly surprising. But Mayor Bill Scanlon is right when he says it potentially holds the key to much-needed future infrastructure improvements in the city.

The traffic on Brimbal is already bad, and the new traffic lights and ramps contemplated for that North Beverly corner will help significantly. But these don’t come cheap, and getting the state and developer to pitch in will ease things considerably for hard-pressed Garden City taxpayers. And then there’s the additional property tax revenue that will be generated, which can be used for things like new schools and public-safety facilities.

It will be interested to see how those seeking to succeed Scanlon will come out on this project.

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