Responding to letter on Mackin Field
I am writing in response to Mayor Rizzo’s Letter to the Editor in your July 22nd edition. As MA District 16 Administrator for Little League Baseball, I have closely followed the debate over the future of McMackin Field. I wish nothing more than to see Little League baseball return to Revere specifically at McMackin Field.
With that said, it is my opinion that the Mayor’s timeline simply doesn’t hold water.
In the March 12, 2014 edition of this paper, DPW Director Don Goodwin details the schedule for the completion of the Winthrop Ave sewer pipe replacement emergency project. Author Seth Daniel states “one piece of good news is the project will be completed April 9th prior to the start of the Little League season.” The mayor states his offer was made” a few years ago” coinciding with this “unexpected” event.
In September of 2013, not the DPW, CDM Smith, the League nor the Mayor could possibly have known the impact this complicated project would have on the dugouts and infield surface. In reality, McMackin Field became collateral damage of the city’s aging infrastructure and MWRA mandates. This is a situation that happened over time and will take time to fix.
The first time the option of a lease agreement between the city and the league was introduced was at a meeting at City Hall in August of 2014 prior to the State Gaming Commission’s Casino vote. In fact, the option was brought up as a suggestion by members of the board as a term of the land transfer in order to protect the field and program from the decisions of future city administrations.
On April 2nd of this year, I attended the City Council’s Summit meeting on Water and Sewage. After the formal meeting, I participated in a conversation with the Mayor and City Solicitor Paul Capizzi. The Mayor instructed the Solicitor to look into the legal ramifications of a public entity entering into an exclusive lease agreement with a private institution. The following morning, the league sent an email to Mr. Capizzi with contact information so he could forward his research findings. No acknowledgment of the email or findings were forthcoming.
This issue is the City’s private/public position only in reverse. The Board did not formally reject the offer because the legal precedent of it was never confirmed. At this point, the Mayor’s quid pro quo offer contained very little details regarding funding or timeline and hinged on the league turning over the land before the City would begin to utilize its contacts and resources.
As a result, the Board continued to pursue a 1.5m appropriation in MA House Bill 4375 Section 2840-7024 signed by Governor Patrick on August 13, 2014. A specific portion of this legislation would provide funding for the purpose of surface flooding reduction and other improvements as needed at the recreation fields located on Winthrop Ave. (i.e. McMackin Field).
This is the crux of the standstill.
I believe that poor communication has existed between the parties but that both seek the same common goal.
Mayor Rizzo states his offer still stands. In an effort to reopen honest and action charged conversations, I urge both the Mayor and City Council to provide the Board and more importantly the public specific details with regards to the scope of renovation, its financing timeline and written documentation regarding the lease agreement.
Putting politics, perception and ownership aside and focusing on what is right for the children of the community is the only viable solution to this challenge.
MA District 16
Compliments DCR on Revere Beach
To the Editor:
As a life-long resident of Revere, and a daily walker of Revere Beach for over 40 years, I feel obligated to write a letter to compliment the members of the DCR maintenance crew for the excellent job that they are doing to keep Revere Beach clean and beautiful.
After a brutal winter, during which this crew worked tirelessly to keep the Boulevard and its sidewalks cleared, they are now working diligently to keep Revere Beach clean in spite of an ever-increasing number of people using it. Each morning when I walk the beach, the crew is out raking the sand, cleaning the sand, collecting mountains of trash, making necessary repairs, and communicating with the public.
I remember a few short years ago when the condition of Revere Beach was a disgrace. Today, thanks to the efforts of manager Brian Kelly and the DCR maintenance crew, Revere Beach is clean and inviting as evidenced by the number of people who come to use it on a daily basis.
Many people take great pleasure in complaining, but somehow find it impossible or unnecessary to compliment. As a community activist, I certainly voice any concerns that I may have, but I take much greater pleasure in complimenting when deserved.
Kudos to the Revere Beach maintenance crew! Thank you for keeping Revere Beach clean and beautiful.
The opioid addiction
One of the biggest challenges we face as a community is opioid addiction. I can’t begin to tell you how many families have been affected by addiction in Revere.
According to Department of Public Health, recent reports have shown more than 1,000 people died from overdoses of heroin and other opioids last year in Massachusetts. On April 24, 2015 the Revere Journal reported that in the last 14 months there have been 137 Narcan saves.
However, there have been six deaths and 69 overdoses where no Narcan was used. As reported in the Boston Globe, Revere ranks 7th in the state for overdoses.
Clearly, addiction is a problem in Massachusetts and Revere; most likely you know someone who has been indirectly or directly affected by addiction. The question is, what can you do to help stop people from being addicted and how do we help those who have addiction problems?
Currently in Revere schools drug prevention programs are ongoing at an early age until graduation. RevereCARES Coalition Alcohol Tobacco and Other Drug (ATOD) Task Force have organized Medicine Take Back Events. As you know, education does not end in the halls of the Revere Public Schools but should continue at home. Please talk with your children daily about drugs and drug use. Unlike any other time in our history children of all ages are bombarded with an all-encompassing drug culture. From rap music to our own government sanctioning the medical use of Marijuana to peer pressure from friends at school, our children are constantly being enticed. Additionally, it is up to us to set a good example as another way of prevention.
As some of these are effective ways to prevent drug use what do you do if someone you know becomes addicted? Seek professional help right away!!
Call your primary care physician, North Suffolk Mental health in Revere, phone number 617-912-7554 or the Department of Public Health’s Bureau of substance abuse service at 1-800-327-5050.
All of these professionals have access to substance abuse programs and can help you connect with the proper support and treatment. Additionally these groups can help you obtain training on how to use Narcan, Narcan is a heroin/opioid reversal agent.
Lastly, no matter how much prevention and treatment we can provide our families and loved one; we need the facilities to treat them. Currently the demand for treatment beds are overwhelming and many people wait months for to receive care. Therefore I urge you to contact your State and Federal representative to provide more funding for an additional 200 drug treatment bed in area Hospitals.
Candidate for City Council