Our new government will have an Open Door Policy
“Making our local government more accessible to all of us starts by changing our perspective from insiders and managers to students and parents, neighbors and taxpayers, that will restore our focus from a central government to our neighborhoods,” stated former State Representative and Selectman John Stefanini. “Resident concerns, big and small, need to be heard and handled in a timely and efficient manner.”
“We need to bring government to people, rather than people to government.”
As Mayor, John will empower and engage residents in the governance of their community by:
- Welcoming all residents into the Mayor’s office;
- Adapting Visual Budget (like Arlington’s online budget) to provide taxpayers with the next generation of accessibility in financial information, allowing citizens to view, engage with, and discuss spending;
- Opening all government expenditures to public inspection (like Massachusetts’ Open Checkbook) in an accessible and understandable format;
- Establishing 311 Hotline and developing a dedicated community smart phone application to bring government closer to its residents;
- Hosting weekly briefings to answer questions about current activities, holding regular office hours throughout Framingham and convening meetings in every neighborhood;
- Using media to reach our residents directly, with a weekly Framingham Cable Access show, Facebook Live, Twitter Q&A, Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA);
- Making appointments that represent our demographic, geographic, economic and ideological diversity of our community;
- Providing ethics, facilitation and participation training for all board, committee and commission members to ensure that we practice what we preach;
- Hiring a Citizen Participation Officer established in Charter to improve communication and outreach between residents and their municipal government; and,
- Implementing the strong transparency and participation requirements in the Charter.
The goal of these and other “best practices” is to increase the transparency of government activity, participation in decision-making, and voice of all residents to improve confidence in and outcome of our local government.
“My best ideas have come from walking our neighborhoods and listening to residents. I believe the best way to achieve our goals is by listening to one another and working as a team. My years of public service are filled with stories of bringing folks together to improve, invest and invigorate Framingham. We need to believe in our collective knowledge and power to make our community, neighborhood by neighborhood, a better place to live, learn, work and play.”
As always, I welcome your questions, comments and ideas. Please contact me via email at Stefanini143@gmail.com or via phone at 508-872-2927.