, Newburyport, MA


January 10, 2013

NRA should be abolished

To the editor:

We are carpetbaggers here in Newburyport. We only bought our house in 1985, and we’ve only lived here full time since 1996. But I remember what Newburyport looked like in the 1950s, and I’ve done quite a bit of studying of Newburyport history. I know of the great contributions of the Newburyport Redevelopment Authority in the 1960s and ’70s in the saving of our city, and I’m extremely grateful.

But by 1985 when we bought our house here, it was pretty obvious that the NRA had fully achieved their mission, and in fact had gone way beyond the call of duty. As I recall, it took years to undo their excesses, especially the Roger Foster hotel mess. Now they’re at it again.

The NRA should have been abolished back then. They had done the job they were created to do, gloriously, but it was complete. Like county government in Massachusetts, they have become an uncontrolled branch of government, unresponsive to the people and with no remaining purpose. I hope, as with county government, that democracy will prevail and that the Great and General Court will end this unfortunate anachronism. It’s an unnecessary level of government.

I presume it will take an act of the Legislature to abolish the NRA. Anybody know how to get the process started?

Tom Horth


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