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17 letters supporting Leone for Select Board


Kenneth Hughes, chairman of the Arlington Contributory Retirement Board and a former Town Meeting member, submitted this letter to the editor.

I had the pleasure of serving with John Leone on the Town of Arlington Government Reorganization Committee. I also served as an Arlington Town Meeting Member with John for many years. I always found him to be well-prepared and knowledgeable about whatever the subject matter we would be dealing with. Please join me in supporting John Leone for Arlington Select Board.

This letter was published Tuesday, March 28, 2023.

John Mahoney, a former member of Finance Committee and Town Meeting, submitted this letter to the editor.

Excellent news, the Town/Select Board can use John's in-depth experience and knowledge on how the town works to help navigate the challenges facing the town in today's new world. His devotion over the years to focusing on what's best for the Town of Arlington is well known.

This letter was published Tuesday, March 28, 2023.

Eric Jacobson of Arlington submitted this letter to the editor.

I know John as a lawyer with deep background experience in Arlington town government. That perspective will be a great asset to the Select Board and to the residents of Arlington.

This letter was published Tuesday, March 28, 2023.

Robert (Bob) Tosi Jr., a Precinct 20 Town Meeting member who lives at Inverness Road, submitted this letter to the editor. 

I am a tough reviewer so I rarely give top marks knowing there is always room for improvement. John Leone knows “We can do better” and as a Select Board member he can help us be a better community.

The MBTA is at a crossroads and while we need to advocate for maintaining public transportation the assessment to Arlington is not fair as compared to other communities. When John served capably as Arlington Town Moderator he had some co-votes with the Select Board members on filling critical town vacancies and John stood out as voting for the position and not the politics.

As a Select Board member I would expect more of the same as he oversees the selection of a new Town Manager and other Select Board appointees. John will work for a housing plan that is appropriate for Arlington and not just what the state goals are. Join me in voting for John Leone as Arlington needs him on the Select Board as we can do better. 

This letter was published Thursday, March 23, 2023.

Patricia Barron Worden, a Precinct 8 Town Meeting member, submitted this letter to the editor.

We in Arlington are very fortunate that John Leone is seeking to serve on the Select Board. 

I have had the good fortune to know John for many years as a neighbor, fellow Town Meeting member from precinct 8, and as Moderator for many years of Town Meetings. For Town Meeting members he made Town Meeting a pleasant and enlightening experience. That was despite the huge responsibility of guiding and properly informing us as the legislative body of the Town to strive always for best outcome as we voted. Those outcomes were for the numerous important issues and budgets in Arlington’s challenging Town Meeting Warrants. His skill, dedication, scrupulous impartiality, and sensitivity in running Town Meetings were outstanding.

John is the ideal candidate for Select Board member. As Former chair of the School Committee and of our Housing Authority Board I appreciate his interest and care for the schools (his children attended APS) and for affordable housing needs. His acute perception and receptiveness for diverse input for our budget considerations will lead to more transparent and less wasteful spending by the Town which is extremely important to avoid excessively large taxation and overrides.

We need his wisdom in the all-important selection of a new Town Manager. Town-wide environmental and local infrastructure needs too long suffering from neglect will get the attention that they need with John on the Select Board. Those include much safer and more attractive, shady, climate-enhancing, pedestrian and disability-friendly streets and resolution of the Alewife CSO sewer overflow disaster polluting Arlington’s waterways.

Above all John will bring to the Select Board observance of the rule of law and full compliance with Arlington’s Bylaws and Town Manager Act which seem to have been eroding in recent years. We need this to avoid corruption of all kinds.

Please vote for John Leone for Select Board. 

This letter was published Thursday, March 23, 2023.

Phyllis Mahoney of Newland Road submitted this letter to the editor. 

I am always thankful to those truly dedicated, thoughtful, intelligent, and insightful individuals who devote that most precious commodity in our lives — time — to the betterment of our community. My friend, John Leone, is one of those people. There are many concerning issues facing Arlington ahead, not the least of which are, a looming override, the need for a viable housing plan to meet demands, hiring a new and effective town manager, and informed guidance towards protecting the health of our environment and its citizens.

I trust John to listen, to filter out the noise, and focus on what’s really important, finding solutions and consensus. It is what he has done in exemplary fashion in his past commitment as Town Moderator and other volunteer positions in Arlington and will continue to do as a Select Board member. Please help Arlington’s future by joining me in casting an enthusiastic “Yes” vote for John Leone on April 1. 

This letter was published Thursday, March 23, 2023.

John Kneeland, a former Town Meeting and Finance Committee member, submitted this letter to the editor. 

Having been a member of and the executive secretary of the Finance Committee for 11 years and a Town Meeting member for over 20 years, I served under four different moderators -- Larry Corcoran, Harry McCabe, John Worden and John D. Leone.

I can truthfully say that John Leone was the fairest of them all. He ran a firm but fair meeting and allowed all voices and arguments to be heard. I can also say that he was totally impartial and did not have an agenda.

I would strongly recommend John for the Select Board where he can bring transparency and put his knowledge of the Town and its finances to work for us. Please join me in voting for him on April 1. 

This letter was published Thursday, March 23, 2023.

Bob Radochia of Columbia Road submitted this letter to the editor. 

This is a letter of support for John Leone, candidate for the Select Board.

As a lifelong resident of Arlington, I have lived through and adapted to the many changes that have taken place here over the past 80 years. But now we are facing more major changes, including zoning bylaws that could impact the character of our town. John Leone is also a lifelong resident who has served this community in many capacities over the past 30 years. His knowledge of our town government together with his many decades of living and working here have given John valuable insights that will help him evaluate and define priorities and goals for both the present and the future.

John was in high school in the 1970s, when there were 53,300 people living in 15,300 housing units, and when the Arlington High School graduating class was 723 in 1973. Today, we have 45,741 people living in 20,529 housing units and 405 students in the class of 2023. Arlington citizens and town officials must make many critical decisions over the next several years, ones that will significantly affect population growth and housing density, which in turn, may change the family-friendly, suburban feel of Arlington into an impersonal, urban environment.

Please consider voting on Saturday, April 1, for John Leone, Select Board. 

This letter was published Thursday, March 23, 2023.

Cindi Ziontz, a former Town Meeting member, submitted this letter to the editor

John is a proven leader that has dedicated so much of his time, energy and extensive knowledge to making Arlington a better place to live, work, visit and enjoy.

As a former Town Meeting member, I was impressed with his ability to make sure all of our voices were heard while prioritizing that we finish the work we were elected to do. I can't think of anyone more qualified to oversee the selection of a new Town Manager and focus on finding solutions for the problems Arlington faces.

Join me in voting for John Leone for Select Board on April 1. 

This letter was published Thursday, March 23, 2023.

Jordan Weinstein, a Precinct 21 Town Meeting member, submitted this letter to the editor.

Arlington faces some real challenges that are going to require tough but important decisions by the five elected members of our Select Board. The board will need to decide how to meet our growing responsibility to build more affordable housing; how to best deal with our systemic, looming budget shortfall; how to ensure that our committees and commissions are more reflective of the interests of town residents; how to move Arlington into the 21st century as a true steward of the environment. And perhaps the Select Board's most important decision will be hiring a new town manager who'll have control over our boards, commissions and committees through his or her power of appointment.

At its last meeting, our current Select Board voted to reject a rather modest warrant article (#12) that would have created a committee to study the town’s continued use of artificial turf, pausing its use on town land while the study is underway (except at the high school). The proposal is in response to growing evidence that the PFAS chemicals used to make fake grass are carcinogenic and endocrine-disrupting. They present a threat to growing children and to our wetlands and waterways into which their component chemicals and microplastics leach. Even the federal EPA has decided there is no safe level of PFAS contamination. But despite being shown this scientific evidence and after hearing from concerned residents, the Select Board Monday night [March 13] voted unanimously to continue with business as usual.

I believe that John Leone would have voted differently. He would have led the Select Board to take seriously the findings of the EPA and scientists across the country who now recognize how toxic artificial turf may be.

Beyond this, John is aware of the importance of finding a way to control our rodent problem without the use of toxic SGARs that end up killing owls and other raptors. He sees the need to stop Cambridge from dumping its polluting outflow into Alewife Brook. And he will fight to prevent the loss of our beautiful and endangered Mugar wetlands and what little wild woods we still have. This is the kind of vision we so sorely need at this time.

On Saturday, April 1, I intend to vote only for John Leone for Select Board. I hope you will too.

This letter was published Thursday, March 16, 2023.

Carey Theil and Christine A. Dorchak of Lakeview Street submitted this letter to the editor.

On April 1, we will be voting for John Leone and Len Diggins for Select Board. Although we care about many issues that impact the local community, we primarily support candidates that have the strongest record on animal welfare. For us, this is not only a way to fight for a set of policies we care about, it’s also a barometer on a candidate’s overall character and desire to serve others.

Although there are a handful of local elected officials who have been apathetic, or even hostile, to animal welfare, our local delegation has generally led on issues such as wildlife protection, companion animal welfare and restricting the use of poisons. We’re grateful for the support of dedicated public servants such as Sean Garballey, Dave Rogers, Eric Helmuth, John Hurd, Paul Schlictman, Elaine Crowder, Elizabeth Dray and Jordan Weinstein.

Regarding the candidates up for election this year, John Leone not only helped pass a warrant article to restrict the use of poisons in 2022; he has made animal welfare a priority in his campaign agenda, highlighting the need for wildlife preservation, poisons restrictions and a local-animal control officer.

Similarly, Len Diggins helped last year pass a warrant article to restrict poisons in our community, and was an important resource to local citizens as we worked with Town Manager Sandy Pooler to adopt a ban on second-generation ant-coagulant rodenticides on town land. Mr. Diggins also confirmed that a controversial petting zoo would not return to Town Day, after animal cruelty incidents occurred in other jurisdictions.

Arlington cares deeply about animal welfare. Thanks to the hard work of courageous volunteers, we are leading a statewide fight against the poisons that kill our wildlife. It’s crucial that we have elected officials that are on the same page, and provide necessary support to this grass-roots movement.

This letter was published Wednesday, March 22, 2023.

Laurence McKinney, a former Town Meeting member and chair of Uncle Sam Committee, submitted this letter to the editor.

Thousands of people passing through Arlington center each day see the relandscaped and updated micropark known as Uncle Sam Plaza featuring the statue of Samuel (Uncle Sam) Wilson. At night the statue is well lit, visible to anyone glancing in its direction. Few realize that without the decision of John Leone, then town Moderator, to appoint me chairman of the Uncle Sam Committee they might see darkness and a relatively unkempt space called simply “Memorial Park.”

When I joined Town Meeting, the committee hadn’t been operating for several years; with my appointment everything started to happen. After a series of requests, Mike Rademacher and the public works department updated and improved the lighting and the water supply. I renamed it “Uncle Sam Plaza” and had the new sign put in place. A couple of years later, the town manager’s office took the badly needed step of completely refurbishing the statue itself. Uncle Sam Plaza is now a little gem and a center piece of our town.

Although the town itself did most of the work, the entire project started when John gave me the chance to see what I could do. When you vote for Select Board, it’s just one more reason to elect John Leone. You have seen what he’s done to improve the town and Town Meeting, and he’s got more to do and to contribute. Please join me in voting elect him to the Select Board.

This letter was published Saturday, March 18, 2023.

John Ward, an Arlington resident, submitted this letter to the editor.

Very few people have worked as hard or as long as John Leone to promote the future welfare of the Town of Arlington. We are encouraged to see an individual with the qualifications embodied in John taking an interest in furthering the welfare of our town.

He offers a renewed sense of a positive direction for Arlington and a good reason for everyone to get out and vote. Please join me in voting for John on April 1.

This letter was published Saturday, March 18, 2023.

Winston Langley, professor emeritus of political science and former provost at UMass/Boston, submitted this letter to the editor.

Wonderful to know that John is running for Select Board. We need people of integrity and good character in public office.

This letter was published Saturday, March 18, 2023.

Rieko Tanaka, a Precinct 9 Town Meeting member, submitted this letter to the editor.

John has an extensive knowledge of town government through his long career as a town official, and as a civically engaged resident. His knowledge and experience are extremely valuable, and his passion is to make Arlington a better place for everyone -- both longtime residents and newcomers.

John knows the town and knows how governing the town works. He is what we need for our Select Board. Join me in voting for him on April 1.

This letter was published Sunday, March 12, 2023.

John Gillis, a patent attorney, submitted this letter to the editor.

I have lived in Arlington for nearly 30 years and have known John and his family for nearly 25 years. He is my personal attorney and a trusted friend. I have always known John to treat everyone fairly and with respect and kindness. He is a good listener, an effective communicator and a skilled researcher.

John's experience as an attorney in private practice for over 35 years and decades of experience in Arlington town government related matters as a 30-year Town Meeting member and 15 years as town moderator are assets that set him apart from other candidates.

Finally, John has also served in various capacities for Arlington Community Media (ACMi), a local nonprofit television community-access station. ACMi is a nonprofit that provides a forum for the free exchange of ideas, welcomes people from all walks of life and with different viewpoints to share their thoughts, and reports on Arlington-related matters.

I cannot imagine a better candidate for Select Board than John Leone. Please join me and my family in voting for him on April 1.

This letter was published Sunday, March 12, 2023.

Bill Hayner, a Precinct 2 Town Meeting member and the elected School Committee Member, submitted this letter to the editor.

I have known John Leone for more than 25 years. John has always had a strong commitment to understanding the important problems facing Arlington.

He is a good listener who puts a lot of thought into an issue before making a decision.

I look forward to having his insight and leadership on the Select Board.

This letter was published Sunday, March 12, 2023.

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