By Andy Levin
A couple weeks ago, the Charter Commission took heavy criticism in some circles for its straw vote recommending a City Council of 13 at-large members and the elimination of ward councilors.
Your TAB editor, who disagreed with the Charter Commission’s plan, met with disapproval from many who support it ...and was also on the receiving end of some unexpected words of praise.
I should have predicted the charter review debate was going to, at least in part, tie in with the citywide conversation about housing development. The signs were there this summer, but I am not nearly shrewd enough to have connected the dots at the time.
While it’s always unwise to paint with too broad a brush, there does seem to be a correlation between support for a much smaller, entirely at-large City Council and affordable housing development. Likewise, many Newton Villages Alliance members and their fellow travelers opposed to multi-unit housing expansion in the city oppose the Charter Commission’s vision. Weirdly, I found myself concurring with the latter group, after 18 months of fervently rebutting their anti-development stance.
Read more of Andy Levin's commentary here.