Friday, June 14, 2024

Dissatisfaction with the style and substance of recent City Council decision-making has produced a big field of candidates for local office – 24 for the nine slots on City Council and 11 to fill six spots on the School Committee – and led to the creation of Cambridge Voters for Good Government to promote civility and civic engagement.

“We believe that good government supported by engaged citizens is the key to a better city. With three open seats on the City Council, we aim to help elect candidates who share a commitment to openness, balance and accountability and can work in collaboration to meet the daily needs and challenges of our city,” said Mary Jane Kornacki on behalf of CV4GG.

The group, which includes members from different neighborhoods, calls for more transparency, civility and frank communication among elected and appointed city officials and the electorate. A website advocates for inclusive, holistic, evidence-based decision-making, saying, “the City Council has enacted ambitious infrastructure, economic and environmental policies without considering the practical needs and interests of too many residents and businesses. Instead of a forum for civil debate and rational consideration of diverse community needs, the City Council chamber has become a theater for heated arguments.

Greater consideration of the connections between the environment, housing, transportation, livability, economic inequality and fiscal responsibility are called for by the group. An additional major goal is to engage more residents, including thousands who have voted only in national and state elections, to participate in local elections.

Endorsements of candidates for council will be announced in mid-September, the group said.

For information or to join Cambridge Voters for Good Government’s efforts, send email to [email protected].

Vickey Bestor is a member of Cambridge Voters for Good Government.