Be careful what you wish for, Boston!
Boston’s Financial Stability at Risk with Council Order
The Boston City Council’s recent approval of an Order to fundamentally change the strong-mayor form of government would bring uncertainty, chaos and a level of bargaining and negotiating with special interest groups that Boston has not seen since its early days. The City’s long-standing strong-mayor governance model—with mayoral budgetary authority a central feature—was established through decades of thoughtful legislative change to achieve the financial stability and ensured accountability that Boston has today. This Order jeopardizes the very core of those strengths. Acting Mayor Janey, should not advance this Order.
Yes, there is always room for improvement and change, but the City must utilize a transparent process, consider the impact of choices in the long term and ensure that Boston maintain a system of checks and balances that the voters of Boston expect. This Order does not simply give the City Council line-item veto or offer a more collaborative process. This Order gives the City Council power over the direction of Boston and usurps the inherent powers of the Mayor under a strong-mayor form of government. This Order, now before Acting Mayor Janey for approval, has moved forward after just one hearing where the public could offer testimony and two working sessions. If this proceeds to the November ballot, it will do so without proper vetting and with promises that will please the loudest voices on where funding should be targeted and not necessarily what is good for the City as a whole.