Name: Jennie Lorraine (Fleisher) Donahue
Address: 18 Cherry St.
Occupation: Former store manager for Turtle Alley Chocolates in Salem from 2001-11. Currently a homemaker and work part time in retail
Education: Attended Newburyport public schools, earned a General Equivalency Diploma in 1994
Appointed or elected positions: Appointed to the Newburyport Commission on Disabilities in 2011, serving as chair since 2012
Civic organizations or activities: One of three moderators for a community Facebook page with more than 6,500 members
1. What is the most important thing facing Newburyport residents in 2018?
The most important thing facing Newburyport residents in 2018 will be taxes. With the ever-rising costs for infrastructure and other budgetary needs, the city must find new revenue streams that will alleviate some of the tax burden on residents.
The business park has tremendous potential for new enterprises and industries. Bolstering our business park with a reputable business/economy hotel would help attract corporate headquarters. This kind of revenue stream could go a long way to relieve taxes for residents, allowing every homeowner to continue living in their homes without fear of continuously creeping property tax bills.
2. What are three things you believe the City Council needs to accomplish by the end of 2018?
I think by the end of 2018, the City Council should:
Adopt and implement Complete Streets policy, and find new funding sources to increase sidewalk funds and Department of Public Services budget. This will help us when we apply for competitive grants;
Complete processes to allow for the new businesses in the industry of legal marijuana cultivation and sales. The increased tax revenue will be a substantial boost to our city's operating budget;
Improve upon policy-driven standards for things such as affordable housing, sidewalks, development and city employee support training for enhanced education and enforcement of city ordinance and policy changes.
3. What is your vision for the Waterfront West property?
My vision for the Waterfront West property is for it to be developed thoughtfully, to not obscure water views and to keep it within the singularly unique character of Newburyport.