Editor’s Note: If the answer is blank, the candidate chose not to answer
Framingham Mayoral Candidate Josh Horrigan
Occupation: Leadership Trainer, Pastor and Carpenter
Years lived in Framingham: 20 years (26 minus my years away for school and ministry work)
What district do you live in: 4
Family: Bill Horrigan, Shawn Horrigan, Joey Horrigan, Terri Horrigan, Paul Roberge, Jennifer Roberge, Stephanie Roberge, Marco Gabrielle, Beth and Michael Dagostino, The Della Femina family, The Thistle family.
Volunteerism: I have volunteered in every capacity possible. From soup kitchens to homeless ministry, from rehab centers to elderly programs. Volunteerism has been a majority of my work over the last 6 ½ years. I have traveled from Canada to Mexico, Hawaii to Haiti, organizing outreaches and leading volunteer effort across the country and outside of it. I have sacrificed my youth, even putting my life at risk, to volunteer in places many others would not go.
Facebook Page & Website: https://www.facebook.com/
Editor’s Note: Candidates were asked to provide one-word answers only
Favorite Place in Framingham: La Cantina
How much would you vote to decrease the tax levy in your first year? Often.
Do you support a split tax rate for business and homeowners? Yes.
Apartments in Framingham — Too many, just right, not enough? Becoming too many.
Should City Hall remain in downtown Framingham? Yes.
Does Framingham need an arts center? It needs an art district.
Would you support the creation of a dog park in Framingham? Absolutely.
Does Framingham need a town pool, a splash pad, or neither? Splash Pad.
Name one business that Framingham needs: Sports Complex.
Describe Framingham in one word: Home.
Mayoral Candidates discuss:
1) Making Framingham more Family-Friendly
2) Saving the arts in Framingham
3) Fixing the traffic congestion in Framingham
Editor’s Note: Candidates were given up to 350 words to answer each question. Answers are copy & pasted into this report.
QUESTION #1 – The Framingham Public Schools represent more than 50 percent of the total budget for the community. Would you support a level-funded budget, a level service budget, and increase in the school budget or a decrease in the school budget? Why?
I don’t believe staying strict to either of these methods are what is best for Framingham going forward.
A “level services” budget give us exactly the same services that were delivered the previous year, while sometimes being too strict in the area of increase.
A “level funding” budget, allocates the same amount of money each year, but due to rising costs automatically create service cuts.
With the amount of diversity, our unique needs and the inevitable increase in school population, we will need a hybrid system. One that allows us to make room for increase, while also being committed to not being wasteful. When it comes to the school budget, plugging up leaks is the solution. Our current superintendent proved that by saving us multi-hundreds of thousands of dollars in just his first few months. The Framingham school system is a miracle when you consider all the obstacles it faces on a yearly basis. We will spend whatever money necessary to keep us at the top of national school lists
QUESTION #2 – Framingham is home to Framingham State University and MassBay Community College. How will you work with these two schools to make sure they are community partners with the City of Framingham? Would you support a tuition free program for Framingham students, like the City of Boston initiative?
One of my main priorities is building a strong relationship with our institutes of higher learning. While also creating a streamline from our local students directly into our local working force. I would love to see both schools expand into our downtown area. My goal is to revitalize our downtown and inject it with a much-needed boost from our college population and their families.
I absolutely support free our reduced tuition programs for Framingham students under some conditions. If we can create a cycle of Framingham Public School students becoming Framingham college graduates then eventually Framingham local professionals. We would be setting up a bright future for our community that we can all be proud of.
QUESTION #3 – Do you feel there is waste in the Framingham municipal budget? If so, please site specific areas where you would reduce funding. In creating your budget, where would you want to spend more money? Give examples.
I don’t think it is hard for any of us to see the gross amount of waste going on in our spending. New roads replaced with new roads, new sidewalks with new sidewalks, a new park on park street to replace our new park on park street. Bridges that never get done on time or under budget. 1.5 million dollars vanishing with no answers. We continue to throw money on top of money while never seeming to make any real progress.
Once we tighten the budget up and plug the holes I believe we will have a lot more money to work with. We need that money to go to many places. A few of them include traffic solutions and commuter infrastructure, aid for small business owners and programs for economic development, and upgraded community areas such as parks on the south side and gardens for our elderly communities.
QUESTION #4 – Discuss your vision for Framingham for economic-development. Be specific with properties like Nobscot Plaza, Saxonville lumber yard, Mt. Wayte Plaza, downtown Framingham, the Golden Triangle and Tech Park.
QUESTION #5 – Does Framingham have a racial and economic equity problem in your opinion? If yes, how would you address it as a mayor.
QUESTION #6 – How would you make Framingham more green? Outline the steps you would take in your 4-years.
Its time we become proactive. The first step is to setup a “Green Energy Department” and higher an Energy Manager. Energy Managers are one of the only “cost positive” positions in a city government because of their ability to bring in more money to the community with grants then their cost of salary. We have phenomenal organizations in Framingham as well as the entire Metro-West. It is time to empower them. If we give them the tool to be effective, I have no doubt their expertise will lead us into a cleaner future.
QUESTION #7 – The biggest problem facing Framingham that no one talks much about is: _________________ And I would address it by: _____________.
Our lack of unity as a community. When people are united, there is little they cannot accomplish. For far too long we have ran our community as two separate entities. If we are gong to reach our full potential, we must do it together, working as one united family. We tackle this issue by bringing life back to the South Side of Framingham. If we can create a welcoming environment in our downtown area. Make it a place we all want to come and spend our time. I believe we will be on the path to bringing back that sense of community that has always made Framingham great.
QUESTION #8 What would you accomplish in your first 100 days? Be specific.