Bryan Barash announces campaign for Ward 2 Newton City Council

Bryan Barash announces campaign for Ward 2 Newton City Council

Newton resident and a long time Village 14 blogger Bryan Barash has formally announced plans to challenge incumbent Emily Norton for the Ward 2 City Council contest in November of 2019.  (Note: Although this is mentioned in a different thread, we traditionally post campaign announcements as a new thread. Barash will suspend blogging during the campaign or if he is elected.) 

Here’s his campaign website and announcement 

My name is Bryan Barash and I am running to be your local Ward 2 City Councilor.

At a time when so much of our politics is divisive, we need to come together as a community to meet the needs of our neighborhood and our city. As your city councilor I will utilize my decade of public policy expertise, combined with my intimate knowledge of both state and local government, to ensure your concerns are heard and your needs are met at City Hall.

I believe strongly in the power of kindness, the impact of compromise, and the decency of the

Globe: ‘It’s not supposed to be easy to ban marijuana sales permanently’

A Boston Globe editorial has some harsh words for the “overwhelmingly white and wealthy” suburban communities where voters supported legalizing recreational marijuana but are now trying to ban the stores.

…it’s not supposed to be easy to ban marijuana sales permanently, especially in towns whose residents voted for legalization in the 2016 referendum. 

Later the editorial is talking about Concord, but it seems to apply to Newton as well…

…One is forced to wonder: Which children did the overwhelmingly white and wealthy towns have in mind, and would they have voted differently in 2016 if all state residents were exposed to its consequences equally?


Massachusetts is headed toward a two-tier system, strongly correlated to race and privilege, and the law allows it. It’s not a pretty picture — and if towns try to make it even worse through moratoriums, officials should just say no.  

Patch article sheds more light on female councilors’ concerns

Jenna Fisher at Newton Patch has had the most extensive reporting on concerns about the treatment of female Newton City Councilors, including this from a new article posted tonight

Multiple councilors told Patch of stories where a woman would hold their hand up to speak but the person leading that particular meeting would ignore her or be dismissive. Another incident mentioned was where a city councilor called two women councilors “lightweights.” There were reports of a city councilor calling colleagues after hours and cursing them out, or snapping at them or talking over them in public meetings where members of the public were present. During one meeting a councilor asking a town employee about why something was not going the way it was supposed to in that department was interrupted by another councilor to tell her he didn’t like her tone, Patch was told.

and Fisher ends with this..

Patch is in the process of listening to recordings of meetings from the past six months and will

Laredo:   ‘…this behavior is not acceptable to me’

Laredo: ‘…this behavior is not acceptable to me’

Thanks goodness for Jenna Fisher at Patch who continues to explore the meeting of eleven female Newton City Councilors that attendees say was “a back yard wine and cheese conversation” about the “appropriateness of the way women were being treated” but is the subject of an anonymous Open Meeting Law complaint, now being investigated by the city solicitor.

In the complaint to the Attorney General’s office, someone alleged all of the women on the Newton City Council who went to a May 20 event violated Open Meeting Law by holding a meeting to talk about council business. But a number of people at the event, described as a back yard wine and cheese conversation, said they did not talk about any

Greenberg:  “…get together was …about the appropriateness of the way women were being treated’

Greenberg:  “…get together was …about the appropriateness of the way women were being treated’

Jenna Fisher at Newton Patch has just posted a story about the anonymous open meeting law complaint against 11 female Newton City Councilors, including this explanation from Councilor Maria Greenberg

“The purpose of the get together was just to speak about the appropriateness of the way women were being treated [in the Chamber],” said Councilor Maria Scibelli Greenberg. “We didn’t know what the protocol was there. We wanted to get together with the experienced councilors and ask them how we could handle it in the future.”

She described the event as social gathering to vent and commiserate. “I guess

Gentile on Riverside : ‘obstructionist’ or ‘hero’?

Gentile on Riverside : ‘obstructionist’ or ‘hero’?

The comments accompanying last week’s Boston Globe article about the proposed revisions to a mixed used development at the Riverside MBTA station, included two very different views of long-time Newton City Councilor Lenny Gentile: 

“S&J’s Dad” writes…
…Councilor Gentile is an obstructionist who represents a minority viewpoint. He shouldn’t be allowed to continue to prevent progress toward modern development at Riverside.
But “Preserve our Neighborhood” write…
…City Councilor Lenny Gentile is a hero, a rare honest and brave elected leader who has the guts to stand up for residents and against the worst excesses of privatization of public property.

What’s your view? Is Gentile “an obstructionist” or “a hero”?

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