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October 30, 2013

Vogel seeks to 'help my community again'

(Continued)

“A beautiful open waterfront — our treasured gem — will increase the desirability of our city, and by increasing the desirability of our city, our property values will remain strong. We can connect the downtown to our waterfront by cleaning up and marking the other ‘ways to the river.’”

What can be done to improve the schools? “Good schools benefit every citizen and homeowner by creating an attractive, viable community with strong property values. We have seen class sizes rise, teaching positions cut, foreign language instruction cut and sports, arts, music and transportation made available only to those students whose parents can afford them.

“The arts, foreign language instruction and sports are not frills to be discarded as soon as a budget crisis is announced. These elements are vital to a complete education. We are making good progress by revitalizing our school buildings — now is the time to provide for what goes on inside them.”

What would be a special interest for you if you are a city councilor? “As a business owner and former councilor, I’m sensitive to budgetary issues and the necessity to balance the city’s needs and future with the related financial burden on taxpayers.

“I want to work on formulating a community identity and help develop a game plan for economic development. How does the fact we are a ‘destination city’ impact us and, to that end, how do we capitalize on it?

“This would be the same with what’s called the ‘industrial park.’ Recognizing that this is part of Newburyport’s identity mix would focus us on the need for zoning changes that would allow us to create and market a broader ‘business park.’”

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