DowntownLynn.com continues it's Election series with a Councilor At-Large roundup. I asked each of the candidates 3 questions. Here is the response from Buzzy Barton. To see more on this series, please visit the Lynn, MA Councilor At-Large 2011 Series.
1. Tell us a little about yourself. Where did you grow up? Where did you
go to school? What on your resume or in your life experience makes you
qualified for this office?
I was born at the old Lynn Hospital in 1952 and I have lived in Lynn my entire life. I grew up on Fayette Street and moved to Chestnut Street when I was 11. I currently live on Brook Street. I went to Ingalls Elementary School, Eastern Junior High and Lynn English. I have held a variety of public-service positions over the last 40 years. I was elected to the Lynn Retirement Board in 2004 and I continue to serve on that board. I formerly served on the Lynn Park Commission and EDIC board of directors.
I served on the Lynn Fire Department for 28 years until my retirement in 2004. I was proud to be named Firefighter of the Year in 1990, Union Man of the Year in 1991 and recipient of the Box 41 Award in 1998. I served on the executive board of Lynn Firefighters Local 739 for 22 years, including four years as president. I have also coached both the girls and boys basketball teams at Lynn English.
I believe my background as a lifelong resident of the city, long-time employee, and member of various boards, along with the countless relationships I have formed over the years, uniquely qualify me to serve the city as a councilor at large, and I look forward to the opportunity.
2. Why are you running for Councilor At-Large?
I am running for councilor at large because I am anxious to continue my long record of public service while accepting a new challenge. Sitting on different boards over the years, I thought I would like to serve the city as a councilor some day. I started giving it serious thought when I retired as a firefighter. This is the right time. I will be an accessible and responsible councilor who makes decisions with the best interests of all residents of the city in mind.
3. What do you see that is in most need of change? How will you change it?
Attracting increased investment should be one of the city’s highest priorities. I am committed to working to implement measures called for in the Waterfront Master Plan. Moving the power lines across the Lynnway was a significant first step to meaningful development on the waterfront. Now is time to move forward, and work to attract new businesses and residents to this area.
I am also committed to working with Chief Coppinger, my fellow councilors and the mayor to identify funding that will allow us to fully re-implement the community policing initiative. While the partial return of the program this summer was a positive step, I firmly believe we need to bring it back to full capacity.
Lastly, I will support the hiring of a full-time grant writer whose job it will be to bring in badly needed revenue that can be used to enhance critical programs throughout the city.