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Gate City Musings: Sidewalk stonewalling getting old

July 28. 2013 9:15PM

Gate City Musings, a column on City Hall happenings and other Nashua items, is published every other Monday. It is written by a veteran political observer whose identity is known to the editors but who wishes to remain anonymous, and breathing.

It's been at least three months since both the public and the city's lawmakers have asked for full disclosure on several items regarding the now long overdue Main Street sidewalk project. Meanwhile, downtown merchants are champing at the bit for it to be completed less they lose more business. Will it take more local stores to fold before many of our elected officials take note?

Even the local newspaper is now getting antsy after repeated requests for a true and hopefully accurate and timely accounting on how much this project has cost so far and what the final figure will end up being. Stonewalling on what is public information unfortunately has been this administration's mantra.

Isn't it time for the Board of Aldermen and the city's Public Works Commission to demand what they are legally entitled to.

Perhaps the Public Works commissioners and the aldermen should take the bull by the horns, get off their duffs and pass resolutions asking for a special public meeting with the mayor to demand answers. After all, it isn't the mayor's wallet that's paying for this project; it's the city's treasury funded no less by us taxpayers.

Hat's off to those aldermen — especially Barbara Pressley and David Deane — who are asking questions and are extremely frustrated with the lack of information. Boos to those public officials who appear to not be concerned one iota.

Apparently some of the aldermen are too concerned where the local VFW hall will be located and the value of one-way streets. While others are fawning all over the mayor and not making a ruckus over what appears to be a huge mistake by Her Honor not making this administration as transparent as it should be.

And where are the Public Works commissioners in this? Aren't they in charge of our city's streets? Are some of them that afraid of City Hall by not questioning what's going on with the Main Street public works project?

So as to not appear to always taking the mayor to task, Musings feels she has been very diligent in carrying out her duties especially in making Nashua the envy of all other Granite State cities in constituent services as well as her work in economic development.

News from Little City Hall (Norton's Diner) is that a new face is considering a run for the corner office two years hence. Christopher Williams, president of the Nashua Chamber of Commerce, is letting it be known to his close friends that he is giving strong consideration to making a run for this office whether the incumbent seeks re-election or not.

Watch for Williams to be more vocal on city issues in the next two years. Up to now, his political leanings have been at the state level in Concord but not here in the Gate City.

When was the last time a chamber executive has run for political office?

A longtime City Hall observer says never.

Will wonders never cease?

Glad to hear that Pressly and Ward 9 Alderman Dan Moriarty have already taken out election petition forms. Pressly is running for re-election and Moriarty hopes to move up from a ward position to an at-large seat. Let's hope that At-Large Alderman Deane follows suit.

Has our beloved city become a mecca for crime? With the latest spate of serious crimes is it any wonder that many citizens, especially those who live in or near the downtown area as well as those who live in the suburbs (where residents felt they were safer), are now questioning how safe our city really is.

Get well wishes to Ward 7 Alderman June Caron with hopes she will be healthy to continue in office. Also a speedy recovery to Sally Streeter, wife of former mayor Bernard Streeter. When Streeter was the city's CEO, Musings was certainly not one of his fans. His anti-union sentiments and tactics with the teachers' union left a bad taste in many of their members' mouths.

Summer is nearing an end. Have you partaken of the weekly movies downtown or the many wonderful restaurants with outside seating? You should!

Remember ... if you have a subject, complaint or praise about what our city officials are up to or you have a suggestion for "kudos," email them to Musings would love to hear from you.

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