What’s the most important issue?

Alanna Nelson holding campaign sign at Melrose Highlands MBTA

The Melrose Weekly News asked all of the local candidates to answer a question. For the City Council candidates, the question was:

What is the most important issue facing residents in your ward, and how do you plan to deal with it when elected?

Here was my response:

As I go door to door in Ward 1, asking my neighbors in Melrose what is important to them, I realize that better communication would address our issues, solidify support for action and strengthen our community fabric. 

Our neighbors deserve to know what decisions are being made and how money will be spent. That’s why a key component to my platform is holding 20 listening sessions in 2020 and sending regular email updates to interested citizens.

To succeed and become healthy, active citizens, our kids need a solid background in inquiry, critical thinking and connecting the facts. The override passed specifically to meet these goals.  As our superintendent and school committee explain how these funds are spent, I will work to ensure accountability and transparency.

Communication is key to solving congestion. What can we do to keep our streets safe for pedestrians, cyclists and cars alike? What prevents us from walking, biking or taking public transit? Understanding these barriers help identify actions. My neighbors identify more cross walks as one strategy. I’ll advocate for funding on the Complete Streets priority list, grants from Massachusetts Department of Transportation, and the City budget. Providing adequate staffing in the Police Department can improve enforcement and reduce overtime costs.

Finally, my involvement in the Energy Commission highlights the importance of communication as we adapt to new technologies that save energy and money. As the Commission identifies its next priorities, education about the possibilities is a key component. The knowledge and the means exist to meet the City’s goal of a carbon neutral 2050, but does everyone know that? Awareness is the first step to action. 

Communication and accessibility motivated me to run for Ward 1 City Councilor. A vote for Alanna Nelson is a vote for a representative who will listen, connect and represent.

I thank the Melrose Weekly News for giving us the opportunity to share our perspectives.

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