Newburyport Planning Office Doing Part of the Building Inspector’s Job?

Well, I’m a little upset about the Mayor of Newburyport rewriting what used to be Julie Labranche’s (our former City Planner) job. This must be part of what the Mayor keeps talking about when he keeps saying he would like to “streamline the permitting process.”

So now we will not have a City Planner. We will now have a “Planning/Zoning Administrator.”

The new position essentially takes over half of the Building Inspector’s job.

One might assume that Mayor John Moak may not be interested in long range planning issues for the City that would protect Newburyport’s historic heritage, local neighborhood character and environmental quality.

If I really wanted to be “catty” I could say that Mayor John Moak appears to be interested in making his long time friend, Gary Calderwood, our building inspector’s job a whole lot easier.

Now I like Mr. Calderwood, he has always been very kind to me. But from a taxpayer’s point of view, it would make more sense to me for our Building Inspector to do the existing job description, than take away much need expertise from the Planning Office.

We need a Planning Office that would be focused on long term planning to protect our local neighborhood character and historic heritage and environmental quality.

Local neighborhood character, environmental quality and historic heritage = money for the City of Newburyport, MA.

Destruction of our historic heritage, environmental quality and local neighborhood character = loss of money for the City of Newburyport, MA.

I am confused. What part of this equation does Mayor John Moak not seem to understand?

Mary Eaton