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Local News

October 16, 2013

Ward 4 candidates sound off on NRA, schools

NEWBURYPORT — As part of its coverage of the Nov. 5 municipal election, The Daily News will provide profiles of residents running for City Council.

Today’s coverage focuses on two candidates for the seat representing Ward 4. This ward covers neighborhoods from Toppans Lane and Broad Street, to the end of Merrimac Street near the Hines Bridge, and from Route 113 to the river. Also included are numerous streets near Highland Avenue and Anna Jaques Hospital. This description is approximate because the ward map is characterized by irregularities.

Thomas E. Jones

Age: 54

Family: Wife, Terry Berns

Occupation: Carpenter and construction superintendent

Education: Bentley University

Reason for running: “I am running for my fifth term on the council because I’ve gained valuable experience and insight into what works for Newburyport and the pitfalls that many cities and towns suffer, and how best we can avoid them. I was born and raised here and wish to keep this community a great place to live and raise a family, to preserve the quality of the community and improve the opportunities for our families.

Position on central waterfront: Jones says he has been concerned about “the general wrongheadedness” of the Newburyport Redevelopment Authority. He favors a waterfront maximized for public use. He said that the riverfront would benefit from a visitors center that could include restrooms and information desk.

The candidate said he would like city officials to consider the waterfront with a view that exceeds simply the central waterfront. “The waterfront over the years will be developed from the American Yacht Club to the old Towle complex.

“A key factor is getting a credible developer,” said Jones, who has spent his career in the construction business. “A good developer wouldn’t want to be tied to a project where there was disagreement among city officials and residents.”

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