At the Council’s most recent meeting on October 13, Ken gave an update on the Chamber operations, and the Council discussed the agenda for the upcoming Cape Ann Caucus.
A focus topic of this month’s meeting was Gloucester’s proposed new elementary school at the site of the current Veterans Elementary School. Guest Paul Lundberg summarized the review process to date and the local and state government measures that have resulted in Gloucester’s debt exclusion override vote (Question 3 on the city’s November 3 ballot). Superintendent Ben Lummis told the Council that there is a great need for the new school, and he argued that with state funding in place and today’s low interest rates now is the best opportunity. He also asked the Council to help inform the community about three upcoming community information sessions.
The Fall Cape Ann Caucus was held via Zoom on Friday, October 23. State Representative Brad Hill joined Ken and me in person in the Chamber’s new Community Resource Room. State Rep. Ann-Margaret Ferrante and State Senator Bruce Tarr attended via Zoom, along with local officials from each Cape Ann community. These included Gloucester Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken, Rockport Board of Selectmen Chairperson Ruth George, Manchester Board Chairperson Eli Boling and Town Administrators for Essex, Manchester and Rockport. School Superintendents Pam Beaudoin (MERSD), Rob Liebow (RPS) and Ben Lummis (GPS) also attended. The focus of the meeting was on how each community, school district and state government have met and responded to the challenges of COVID-19.
The Government Affairs Council leads the Chamber’s focus on economic development and public policy, one of our key platforms. This Council meets on the second Tuesday of each month from 7:30 to 9 AM, and participation is open to any Chamber member with an interest in being engaged with our state and local government and helping foster a vibrant Cape Ann economy. Currently, those who are part of our monthly meetings include representatives from Cape Ann’s industrial, tourism, government, real estate, legal, non-profit and services sectors.
To learn more or join in these meetings, please contact Ken or me. Our next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, November 10.
Chair, Government Affairs Council
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