The Newton Forum is a blog “Where residents can politely share their views while using their real names.” Its purpose is to foster civil debate and allow Newtonites to discuss the pertinent issues of the day without being demeaned for holding opinions that are counter to the status quo. I am proud to be a contributor. Here are a few of my musings (from newest to oldest) but please link to the main page to peruse the wealth of offerings by other worthy contributors.
From the Newton TAB June 29, 2016
The push for higher density in Newton is renewed with the Mayor’s recently released housing strategy. But his strategy incorporates the same unsuccessful policies we have seen in so many other cities: the belief that more housing will equal lower costs. The problem is that this oversimplified “supply and demand” equation does not work in real estate. In cities using this strategy, home prices escalate precipitously — from Portland, Oregon; Seattle, Washington; to New York City, Washington D.C., and Boston, Cambridge, and Brookline.
The failure to act on our almost one billion dollar unfunded pension and health care obligations for retiring municipal workers and elected official is one of the most serious issues facing Newton. If we were to pay this obligation today, each of our more than 31,000 households would owe over $30,000! Having a debt this size will certainly change the way we pay for our basic city services including our schools. It is irresponsible to think we can avoid the problem any longer, or pass it off to the next generations of children and Newtonites.