Housing Authority Candidate: Paul Alfano

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Dear Editor:

I decided late last year and announced my decision at the December meeting not to run for another term on the Board of Health because I felt seven years was long enough and it was time to give someone else the opportunity to serve. It was a decision I made after the deaths of both my brother and father earlier in 2011.

Friends of mine asked that I stay, but my decision was already made. When told of the opening on the Housing Authority, I immediately knew that it was a position I was interested in running for. The Housing Authority holds a special place in my love of Canton.

My first job was shoveling snow at Hagan Court, when there was only Hagan Court. Ed Dockray, a neighbor from up the street, was the executive director and needed a crew to shovel after a bad snowstorm. I and another fellow must have made a good impression on Gino Berardi as we were given a maintenance job cutting lawns and painting that summer.

I continued to work summers as the authority grew to include Rubin Court. I fondly remember the Italian garden next to the maintenance room and the fellow that maintained it. I will never forget being told to weed the hill next to one of the buildings and getting a case of poison sumac. What a sight I must have been, wearing a white sock on my hand to work the next day. What I will never forget are the people and how generous and kind everyone was. When working out on a hot day there was always someone offering a lemonade or another cold drink.

I believe the Housing Authority board would benefit from my close connection to the Health Department. While I wish the BOH could do more at the Housing Authority with regard to smoking, the fact is that the Housing Authority is a state entity and the Health Department has no control over its policies. As a member of the Housing Authority board, I would make it a priority for the authority to make all its housing smoke-free before the end of my term. This will be no easy task, but steps taken now will yield future benefits, both in the health of its tenants and financially.

The Housing Authority is now facing a huge task to rehabilitate all of its sites. After visiting all of the senior housing, I was dismayed at the state of the exteriors of many of the buildings, mostly at Rubin Court, but also Hagen Court. I know the budgets from the state have been tight, and it will be a challenge to do all that needs to be done. I feel my time spent on the Building Renovation Committee under two chairmen I respect has prepared me for the task, and I look forward to working with Mark Roy and the rest of the board to give new life to the buildings the authority oversees.

I am also in favor of the passage of CPA because at least 10 percent of the funds must be used for senior housing, and a member of the Housing Authority must sit on the commission that votes on which projects to bring to town meeting for a vote. No longer should Canton let the proceeds from housing sales in Canton go to neighboring towns when we could keep and use the funds at home.

I ask for your vote on April 3.

Paul J. Alfano

Woodlock Road

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avatar Posted by on Mar 21 2012. Filed under From One Citizen to Another, Town Election. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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