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Election roundup: Teachers to issue emergency endorsement for Arroyo, Consalvo; Hyde Park business owner pissed at Conley

The Boston Teachers Union's leadership will ask for the vote during a regular union meeting this afternoon, a couple days after the Globe endorsed Connolly and Barros, both of whom want to see more charter schools in Boston, an idea that offends the union's sensibilities. Consalvo and Arroyo, both of whom say they would oppose an expansion of the number of charter-school seats, are expected to be on hand around 4:45 p.m. after the vote.

Meanwhile, the Network for Public Education, which is headed by a rich New Yorker who actually opposes charter schools, endorsed Consalvo:

He has stated that he does not believe in raising the cap on the number of charter schools in Boston. He believes that schools should offer students comprehensive curricula and that we must examine our over-reliance on standardize testing - the data and results of which should only be shared outside of the school system (with companies like inBloom and Amplify) with parental consent.

Based on the reaction John Connolly got when a national pro-charter group said it would throw tons of money his way, the group adds its endorsement does not come with any money or paid workers attached.

Mike Ross says he wants to see Boston with 1 million residents by 2025:

This is an ambitious goal, but I believe in a metropolitan future for Boston. Growing our city is how we will create jobs, actually stop the rising cost of housing, and bring in the needed revenue to fund my priorities like universal pre-K education and expanding the MBTA.

If we do this right, rents go down, our tax base increases, and we create thousands of jobs for new and current residents. This won't happen all at once. It's a lofty goal to push us in the right direction and a plan for long-term growth.

A Herald poll shows Connolly with a small but growing lead.

Dan Conley has a five-point plan for Hyde Park (see attached, below), where he grew up and which he represented as a city councilor before becoming DA and moving to West Roxbury. But one Hyde Park business owner says he better add a sixth point: Remove her theater from his mailing to Hyde Parksters:

For 8 years Dan Conley represented Hyde Park on the City Council and he never showed any interest in the Everett Theater. Last year, we took the first step in revitalizing the Everett Theater when we unveiled the vintage lighted sign that Dan Conley shows in his mailer. Dan Conley did not have anything to do with getting the funding for that sign, but Rob Consalvo and Mayor Menino did. It's hard to believe Dan would 'take the lead' to restore my theater as mayor, as his campaign literature says, when, for all his time on the council and his many years as a Hyde Park resident before he moved to West Roxbury, he showed no interest in the revitalization of the Everett Theatre.

David Bernstein surveys the mess of a campaign he says Charlotte Golar Richie has run and says maybe Consalvo should stick to rubber sidewalks rather than making grand but vague pronouncements on things that could really cost the city money.

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Comments

Where the hell does Mike Ross think these people are going to live? Asshat. Not all of us can be real estate lawyers.

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1 mm peeps - in 12 years?

That's a 4% per year growth rate. That would require roughly quintupling the rate of construction in the city. And to generate all that you need jobs for these people to work at (always amazes me how the pols around here think that if you build housing people will occupy it - didn't large parts of the country learn that doesn't work about 5 years ago today?). I would love to see him map out a detailed plan for how he gets to 1 mm total people and 15,000 units of housing annually by 2025- the ramp up to that alone would take 10 years - planning, permitting, financing, ribbon cutting, construction, sell-out, replacement for a disproportionate aging baby boomer population that's rapidly dying or moving to FL etc.

How about we walk before we run and get up to just 1% growth?

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His plan is to hide all the contraceptives.

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Ross's logorrhea should keep him at the kids' table. I want a mayor with his feet on the ground.

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And, for rents to come down in Allston, anyhow, the population needs to decrease. Crowding is part of what keeps the rents high.

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If a politician tells you he wants cheaper housing in Boston he is either lying or stupid. Prop 2.5 sets the maximum that we can collect in taxes at 2.5% of total assessed value. We stand just shy of 2% now and almost all of our incremental revenue annually comes from property tax increases or new taxes generated by new construction. If property values stagnate and we just do automatic increases we reach the limit in about 8-10 years and sooner if property values fall, especially if they fall at the high end of the market - not to mention a host of other "bad stuff" that happens in a community when values fall.

Despite all the rhetoric about building more housing, affordable housing, yadda yee yadda yo - nobody who becomes mayor can preside over declining values in real estate and hope to get re-elected or balance a budget. That last part's not an opinion - that's arithmetic.

Not to say we shouldn't build more - especially moderately priced housing - but it's a fine line between building more and crashing the market which we may be doing on the high end as we speak. Hold your schadenfreude against the 1%ers - that's not a good thing.

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The apparent solution is building up. With any style of building, there's going to be a ratio between cost of public services required and private costs. Building suburban-style creates a high ratio, with more miles of street to be plowed, more miles of pipe to be laid, etc. Increasing density improves the ratio. Through infill and building up, we can create more residential value for a tax base, without having the increased public services required outpace the new income. The fundamental advantage of living in a city is increased economy of shared services; we should leverage rather than ignore that.

One of the big limiting factors of increased density in Boston is parking requirements for residential construction. The artificial requirement of a space per unit reduces density and increases both private and public cost. It's one of the factors limiting new development to luxury apartments (to pay for expensive parking garages) or low-rise suburban style complexes with parking lots. The BRA should suspend parking space requirements for any new residential construction within a quarter mile of a T station. Let parking return to market separately from residence. Builders can put in parking spaces and sell them separately, and put that cost on the people who want the spaces, rather than making everybody who wants an apartment in Boston pay for them.

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Mike Ross already solved the crowding issue by legislating no more than 4 unrelated people per rental unit. So, rents should fall any day now.

(I wish I was a wealthy idiot from Newton dabbling in real estate! The Aristocrats!!)

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Mike Ross did that? He must be wicked old- because I thought that law had been on the books for decades.

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Wasn't 2008 a cool enough year for you to read the news or something?

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Most teachers don't live in Boston, so this is just a union exercising its political muscle to protect its economic interest. That's their right of course, but I don't really care what the BTU thinks about the mayoral race anymore than I care who the carpenters union is backing.

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I've lost count of how many "proud BTU member" signs I see in the southern neighborhoods... specifically around where Arroyo and Consalvo live. Consalvo has a lot of BPS employees in his district.

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there's a lot but I really don't think it's anywhere near a majority of the membership. At the K-5 schools I'm familiar in with the Boston resident teachers are a clear minority.

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You're forgetting that BTU membership also includes retired teachers. Plus you have spouses and adult children of teachers, neighbors of teachers, people who have relatives who are teachers, even people who know teachers in other districts - or even collegiate-level educators ... all of these people are going to be influenced by BTU endorsement. So you might not care, but those of us who know people who work in education do care - and there are an awful lot of us in this town. They have clout - Menino knew this, the school board knows this. You don't eff around with BTU.

I think BTU endorsement is not a kiss of death - especially since they actually support longer school days and are not wholly against charters - just that the existing charters are currently sucking money from the system - actually end up costing BPS more per student- and aren't required to take the most difficult kids - and that adding more as a solution to current problems completely backwards.

if people actually bothered to educate themselves on their positions and what the real issues are with the city, I think we'd all stop and wonder who the hell is behind the (borderline libelous) nonsense currently being spewed by the globe and everyone else.

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... to be in favor of union busting (or at least union enfeebling) pretty consistently.

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has members in national pro-charter groups. They ran an "education" series for a while where the columnist was someone with stand for children - hardly fair and balanced.

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... they seem to oppose almost all unions -- but they seem especially biased on the issue of teacher's unions (and blatantly in favor of privatizing public education -- at public expense).

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Forgive my amateur question...I'm noticing that the endorsement of two candidates seems to be a pattern.

When voters go to the booth next week, are they voting for 1 candidate or 2?

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Pick either one. This accounts for the election law.

The preliminary reduces each office to twice the number of those who could be elected. That would be two for a mayor or district council seat, and eight for at-large council ones.

So the dual endorsement for mayor suggests what the endorser figures would make the best competition in the November 5 final.

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Harold Brown, arguably the most powerful landlord, was quoted in the Globe saying he could decrease by 40% the rent he charges and he'd still make money!! 40%!!!!!

I like the free market and all, but maybe Mike Ross should get his head out of his ass and work on the inflated housing cost problem.

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how does one deflate the housing market? By creating more housing stock. I think that's part of his plan, no?

How do you fault Brown for making as much profit as possible. I'm sure GM could charge less for their cars and still make money. I'm sure my local deli could sell cheese for 10-15% less and still make money, but that's not where the market is at the moment. If there were 5 other places to buy cheese on the street, perhaps, but not now.

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"I'm sure GM could charge less for their cars and still make money"

GM is still losing money.

The Boston RE market on the other hand is so white hot with supply not even close to meeting demand that landlords can ask for a mint if a property is in the right location.

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Could you read all the way to the end, next time? That second paragraph wasn't too long. Of course Hamilton will rake it in—hence my recognition of free markets. Jesus.

Mike Ross made Boston's affordable housing crisis demonstrably worse. Now he wants to "fix" it with more housing? Where? I want to know where this fantastical housing stock would go. Not even affordable housing, just that many new units in general.

Ross doesn't have a plan. He has a campaign talking point that should've been laughed out of the room for the giant lie it is.

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Felix Arroyo accomplished something great for the city by getting the CC to unanimously pass the Invest in Boston act. It will mean that Boston $1 billion in deposits will be in banks that hire Boston residents, extend credit to Boston small businesses, make refinance mortgages in Boston neighborhoods.
It probably killed the other city councilors who are running for mayor to vote Yes and give Arroyo this huge accomplishment so close to the election but they really couldn't vote no without looking really small.
The big robber banks don't like it either.

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Rob Consalvo has pushed a number of ideas for making the banks better manage foreclosure properties, for example.

See these links for more:

http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2013/08/01/mayora...

http://robconsalvo.com/5-ways-to-hold-big-banks-ac...

For what it's worth, I doubt any among the city counselor candidates are big bank buddies.

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