Friday October 29, 2010

The secretary of state's office only gets noticed around election time, but it has a wide purview that incumbent Democrat William Galvin has made use of for Massachusetts' benefit. Mr. Galvin has streamlined the paperwork process for businesses that must deal with his office's regulations. As chairman of the Historical Commission he has secured tax credits for Pittsfield's downtown initiatives, most notably $300,000 for the Colonial Theatre restoration. As the state's enforcer of campaign finance laws, he has investigated lobbyist abuses, including those involving his party, and fought for tougher regulations. With the census coming, he conducted an aggressive voter registration campaign to help protect the state's legislative delegation. His Republican opponent, William Campbell, has made no convincing argument for change in his under-the-radar campaign. The Eagle endorses William Galvin for re-election as secretary of state.

Council does right by city

The anti-blight initiative passed Tuesday night by the Pittsfield City Council will be working for Pittsfield long after the painful council debate that made it a reality is forgotten. Residents were told that the initiative confused them, but there are no indications that the plan confused anyone beyond a couple of city councilors. The initiative benefits good landlords and property owners, cracks down on bad landlords and property owners, and expedites the appeal process to the benefit of the city and the accused. Ward 7 City Councilor Joe Nichols apparently listened to some ward complainers in love with the failed status quo and thought he was listening to the voice of the city. He wasn't. The initiative will benefit the neighborhoods that we heard in the last election campaign were ignored by Mayor Ruberto, who proposed the initiative. By an overwhelming majority, the City Council did what was right for Pittsfield.