|By G. Michael Dobbs, Managing Editor|
There's a lot of stuff floating around in my mind this week, so let's go.
In our Big E story I wrote about the "Chinese Venting Balls" sold at the fair. These intriguing toys (I bought two) look like they splatter when thrown against a smooth surface. They reform themselves like some sort of determined single cell organization.
Alas, the two balls lost their ability to splatter and reform within days and behave more like standard plastic balls.
I was initially dismayed that I had been snookered, but then I thought, well, isn't that part of the fair experience taking a chance on buying something you can only get there? I have to add I'm still in love with my trunk organizer and my wife still likes the back support insert we bought there. Two out of three isn't bad.
I'm writing this column on Oct. 1 and I haven't heard anything about a debate between the Springfield mayoral candidates. I know there will be a debate for the Chicopee candidates as well as the forum at the Senior Center and I suspect there will be one for Holyoke as well. The communities across the river have already had preliminary mayoral forums as well.
But so far just wait, there will be an announcement as soon as this column is printed I've not heard about a debate opportunity and there should be. I do have some questions for both men.
Speaking of the Springfield race, Bud Williams received the following endorsement this week:
"Hello, my name is John Verducci III a.k.a. The Hot-Dog Guy. I would like to thank everyone for their support during this very trying time, first of all through joining this group and by signing various petitions in support of my position. Also, by calling local and regional political figures, as well as media outlets (radio, T.V., and newspaper).
"This has been very trying time for me and my family. I was faced with losing my livelihood for no good reason other than change of policy by Mayor Sarno, even after being able to do my job for almost 25 years with no problems. The tremendous outpouring of support from the public at large made my family and me feel more at ease. I was honored by loyal support shown to me in standing up for myself to be able to do the right thing.
"During this situation several city counselors came to the defense of the downtown vendors. Bud Williams, James Ferrera, Tim Rooke, Pat Markey, Jose Tosado, and Bruce Stebbins. These counselors called a special meeting with the Police Commissioner, which allowed me to go back to work on Aug. 4, 2009.
"I was able to see Bud Williams interact with various city department heads such as City Solicitor, Health Department, and Police Department. I was very impressed with his political acumen. He questioned various city officials and was able to see that their statements lacked congruency.
I am supporting Bud Williams for Mayor of Springfield. I agree with Mr. Williams on all of the issues, and believe all of his ideas are on point.
"For me to be in support of someone I felt the need to investigate Mr. Williams character; here is what I found. I called a friend of mine. He worked with Mr. Williams for over 30 years. He stated that he is an honest, stand-up guy who will listen to the issues. My second reason is that Mr. Williams is married to the same woman for 37 years, which shows me stability.
"You can help me by supporting Bud Williams for Mayor."
Verducci posted the endorsement to his Facebook page and I thank Bill Dusty for calling this to my attention.
Congrats to Chicopee City Councilor Jim Tillotson for admitting that setting the tax rate is "political." It's refreshing to hear an elected official own up to the reality of a situation this one being the mayor's and the City Council's actions on the tax rate taken before the election could be seen as playing politics.
Candor is always appreciated.
Speaking of the Chicopee tax rate, it was interesting to see the council lower the proposed increased tax on the city's commercial properties that's a step I wish other cities would take to help area businesses out.
This column represents the opinions of its author. Send your comments online to firstname.lastname@example.org or to 280 N. Main St.,East Longmeadow, Mass. 01028.
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