The Metrowest Chamber of Commerce is hosting a Mayoral Forum from 7:00-8:00 pm on October 21st at the Sheraton Framingham Hotel & Conference Center.
This Live Forum will be a small in-person audience of MetroWest Chamber Board members
Access Framingham TV will be present and will have a rebroadcast available after the event. Complete Technology Resources (CTR) will be coordinating the live streaming to the public via the chamber’s YouTube channel. There may be a live radio broadcast as well (details to follow).
The Chamber will also be providing an interpreter for our deaf and hard of hearing audience.
Questions will be supplied by Chamber Members (3-4 from large members, 1 from a small member and 1 from a non-profit)
Susan Petroni, Publisher and Editor of The Framingham Source and one other media member from the MetroWest Daily News will be asking the questions of the Candidates. Each candidate will have up to 2 minutes to answer a question and if a candidate chooses to rebuttal, they each will be allotted 30 seconds. There will be a brief break in the middle, no longer than 5 minutes.
1. The devastation of the pandemic has prompted individuals to re-evaluate their employment with respect to personal health, sense of purpose, quality of life, and the well-being of their families. Factors such as housing costs, commute time, and general expenses influence a decision to quit a job and move away, or perhaps not accept a job. How will your administration ensure the City of Framingham becomes more affordable and livable, so folks move here and stay here?
2. The pandemic has spotlighted the opportunity and value of remote work for employers and employees of certain sectors and types of businesses. However, for other sectors such as hospitality or manufacturing, remote work is not an option. Especially for advanced manufacturing, the supply of trained and skilled employees was inadequate before the pandemic. Framingham is home to several well regarded and high performing post-secondary academic institutions. How will your administration assist these institutions and manufacturers to develop workforce training and apprenticeship programs specific to the needs of manufacturing?
3. What steps will you and your team take to assist underserved communities in Framingham, so they have financial support to secure jobs and affordable housing?
4. Framingham is home to many nonprofit organizations who have continued to provide many critical services without interruption during the pandemic. Many programs are struggling to maintain their funding as well as their direct service workers due to pandemic fatigue. What would you do as Mayor to ensure that these vital services such as food security, suicide prevention, emergency shelter and substance use programs remain operational and able to serve Framingham? How would you also recognize the essential workers that perform these much-needed services every day?
5. Recently, one of the temples in Framingham was vandalized. With an increase in reported hate crimes across the nation, especially against minority communities including surging rates of violence and discrimination against Asian-Americans that have intensified since the pandemic began, what would you do to help residents and business owners feel safe and heard when they have concerns? “
6. Due to the pandemic, the city of Boston is experiencing less activity in the city because more businesses are having employees work remotely, do you feel Framingham is being impacted the same way, and what strategies do you think would help Framingham keep businesses active in the city?
7. Small businesses are important to the Framingham Metro West area, and we know they have been heavily impacted by the pandemic. What are some of your plans to support small businesses and their growth.
8.How will you as Mayor improve Disability Access in the City of Framingham, making sure that there is some change for improving wheelchair access in many buildings as well as having Interpreters available for all Mayor sessions and crisis events?
9.Time permitting an optional 9th question from our BOD - Businesses make many considerations in deciding where to locate, including labor, transportation, infrastructure, availability of housing for employees, predictable and permitting environment, and taxes and fees. Framingham’s split tax rate may be seen as an obstacle to attracting and keep businesses. What are your thoughts on the local property taxes businesses pay? As a follow up, do you have other ideas on using property tax incentives to attract good businesses to the area?
TUNE IN on October 21st at 7PM...Here is the LINK to the YouTube STREAMING MAYORAL FORUM!
(Copy and paste into your browser)
Event Sponsor and Host Location:
Additional Thanks to the Following: