On the Trail with Ty

ON THE TRAIL WITH TY

Today I met a third World War 2 Veteran, a 91 year old who fought in the battle of Okinawa, the Korean War and the Vietnam War, before retiring from the military in 1966. He was tired of war.

But now this North Main Street citizen is scared for another reason. He supports his wife and maintains his house of 50+ years on a fixed income in an era of rising property taxes.He asked what I planned to do to help him financially?

I told this World War 2 vet that I supported a tax freeze/tax break for older seniors who had limited assets. I told him that a bill is sitting in the statehouse, sponsored by Rep. Jim Hawkins, to allow Massachusetts cities and towns to craft their own property tax policy for senior homeowners. This bill would essentially allow Attleboro’s city council to decide the age, asset and income limitations for seniors to gain a tax break.

So I told him and his angry wife that, "Yes, I will support a tax break for them. even if it means I personally have to pay $100-$200 more per year to help elderly seniors keep their homes."

He thanked me and shook my hand. And I told him my handshake is my word.

Advertisements

On the Trail With Ty: June 1 and 2

WARD ONE VETS – SOUTH ATTLEBORO

John (Corrigan) and I had a fascinating weekend at the doors in South Attleboro this weekend! Fascinating. (John travels with me when I am in my car in lieu of riding my bike.)

1. We reconnected with Ted Ouellete on Brown Street. Ted is approaching his 99th birthday, does his own cooking and home chores, goes out shopping with his 91 year old brother who lives a few blocks away, still drives, and looks in good shape. Ted is a WW2 Navy Veteran who drove the landing craft in the European Theatre, including the invasion of Anzio (Italy?). A soft-spoken gentleman and lifetime Attleboro native, Ted graduated from the "old" high school on County Street and worked 55 years as a press operator in an Attleboro jewelry shop.

2, Today we listened to Raymond Brogan, also a 98 year old WW2 veteran, who lives on Robinson Street in the house he built many moons ago. Ray was in the first wave of the Marines invasion of Guadelcanal (not sure of the spelling) and the battle of Okinawa. His memory is extremely vivid as he described hitting the beaches and running through rings of fire with heavy casualties. The Marines (1st division) were stranded on the beach, and left alone without food, until finally they were rescued by another invasion by the Army. Ray lost a lot of friends in the Marines. He returned to his native Attleboro and worked for many years in the vicinity of Texas Instruments, for a company making engines for nuclear subs. He was a supervisor and responsible for the performance of many an atomic sub. In his leisure time, Ray and his loving wife traveled thousands of miles in their schooner, with a beautiful photo lining his walls.

Ran ran into Donald Trump at least three times over the years, observing Mr. Trump threatening his first wife with his fist, and later on threatening a young teenage dock hand, also with his fist, when Ray anchored his boat at the same port as our erstwhile President.

On one occasion, Ray was told to leave his mooring next to Mr. Trumps huge yacht….so Donald could turn his yacht around and bring a lady friend (Barbara Streisand) back out to sea. Apparently Mr. Trump had a way of getting his way even then. Ray had to vacate the premises so Mr. Trump could also vacate the premises. Ray wryly noted: "Donald Trump knew a lot of powerful people and got his way even back then."

Ray talked to us for two solid hours today and we could have listened to his life experiences all night.

Both of these gentlemen, Ted and Ray, are wonderful representatives of Our Greatest Generation! I feel blessed that they both want to support my candidacy and put up my signs on their property this fall.

I wish Theophile (Ted) Ouellette and Raymond Brogan could ride in a special WW2 veterans car in Attleboro’s 4th of July parade this year.

Thank you, Ted … Thank you, Ray. You are the true American heroes1

A great day for Attleboro!

I am proud to live in Attleboro and in Massachusetts. We had a powerful ceremony to honor our LGBTQ friends and neighbors today at City Hall, despite technical problems with the microphone and misplacing the key that raises the LGBTQ flag! The flag will go up on Monday.

It was great to welcome Jax Adele back to Attleboro for a day as the MC of this special event. Every speaker ranging from Jax to Senator Paul Feeney to Mayor Paul Heroux gave thanks for our LGBTQ community.

I believe the core values of honesty, kindness, empathy, and compassion were alive at City Hall today!

Thank you for all the LGBTQ friends I’ve been able to make. While our world remains far from perfect, we have evolved into a far more accepting society than we lived in when I entered Planet Earth back in 1948.

To my LGBTQ friends and neighbors …. thank you for helping me become a more accepting, understanding human being. We are evolving in a positive direction!

All My best –
Ty

Ty Waterman

 

61899697_2720161834667030_9102807902514577408_n

Photo courtesy of Marilyn Powers

Ty’s Council Connections

On the Trail with Ty:I’ve been bicycling around our city for two weeks now. Finally put on shorts yesterday. Summer is almost here.

I’m advocating for our schools, children, seniors, firefighters, downtown revitalization and more. Everyone I meet wants our firefighters to get the protective gear and washer/driers that fight cancer. I will continue to push for a second set of turnout gear for the firefighters and expect a second gear washer/drier for the South Attleboro station to be purchased in July. I can’t think of a better cause than thanking our firefighters by protecting their health!

I spent the last few days on Bernt Drive, Rome Blvd., Green Drive, Rathbun Willard Drive, and Fairway Drive. Many of these folks are affected by the construction and traffic around the new high school. Everyone I met felt the new high school was a great boon for the youth of our city. They all said it is worth putting up with the inconvenience of noise and traffic. There will be a meeting at the high school (school committee room) for area residents on May 29th at 5 pm. I will be attending.

The number one issue as I biked around Wards 1, 6 and 2 these past few weeks…. is property taxes. Most folks think the new school is well worth their tax hike. However, some residents are wondering how they will afford the tax jump. I reminded voters that we need to help out our seniors with tax abatements and Senior Exemptions. The City Council is working on legislation to do just that. However, there are younger owners who are losing jobs and having difficulty making ends meet. I spoke with several unemployed folks this week and my heart goes out to them.

I also met several people who felt their property wasn’t assessed accurately. One man told me he was taxed for four bathrooms when he actually only has a bath and a half in his home. Another gentlemen was shocked to find his house increased in value $50,000 over the winter. I am advising people who feel they have a faulty assessment who they can contact. At the very least we all deserve a reasonable explanation for our tax levels.

The second biggest question is the future of Highland Park. We have two more big events coming this year at the park. The July 4th celebration will be at Highland and the Vietnam Traveling Wall is coming in September. The cross country course is finished and I’m sure we’ll hear about future developments soon enough. Most folks who live around the park seemed happy that the city purchased Highland and plans on preserving it’s beauty.

Sport tip of the week: Did you know the AHS baseball team has qualified for the state tourney? They play smart, snappy ball and keep winning one run games. Big game at Hayward Field tomorrow (Monday) vs. Franklin at 3:45. Check this team out! I’ve had a ball rooting for them this spring!

All The best,
Ty

Ty WatermanTyWaterman1918
508-455-1918 – Home

Ty reads to students at Hill-Roberts.

Reading a book with 4th graders

20190429_122037STORYBOOK TIME AT HILL-ROBERTS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Yesterday I read a book to a fourth-grade class at Hill-Roberts Elementary School in South Attleboro. Granted, I was a bit nervous. It had been a long time since I had read to my two adult daughters, Arryn and Kate. But it’s like getting on a bicycle. You never forget how much fun reading to children can be. It reminded me of reading “Little House on the Prairie” to my daughters.

So I brought my baseball glove, a baseball, wore a Manny Ramirez vintage Red Sox shirt and my old Red Sox hat. Twenty-five children snuggled down in the reading nook in the corner of their classroom, sat on a rug and listened to “Zachary’s Ball”. It’s a story about a nine-year-old boy who went to a game at Fenway Park. Zachary went with his Dad, was dreaming that he made a great catch in left field, pitched the final winning World Series game, and caught a ball in his seat. The children loved the story.

Several of the 4th graders told stories about balls they had caught, or been given, both in Fenway and while watching the Paw Sox. The told me what they loved about Fenway Park (the Green Monster, hot dogs, and the dirt infield). All eyes were on me while I read the story. It turned out that Zachary’s Ball was a Magic Ball. When we were finished I turned and gave my baseball to the girl sitting on my right. She was delighted…. but I reminded her to the ball was magical and she needed to share it with other children. She nodded yes.

Listening to “Zachary’s Ball” was a magical time for both myself and the children at Hill-Roberts!

We had a lot of fun! These children are precious and we need to give them the best education humanly possible. Hill-Roberts is a really nice school.

Play Ball !!!!
Ty

Council Connection

A Week of Ty Waterman’s City Council activities (April 8 – 13, 2019)

MONDAY and TUESDAY:

ATTLEBORO PUBLIC LIBRARY: A space study recently proposed by the mayor and funded by the City Council.

I worked with a contracted consultant, a dozen or so librarians. city employees, and friends of the library, reconfiguring how to best use the library’s current space in the future.
1. We imagined:
a) An alternative children’s library on the second floor.
b) A larger meeting room on the first floor.
c) Public concerts in the marble area on the 2nd floor.
d) A more attractive front desk area.
e) Opening up the front entrance and beautifying the lawn in front of the library.
f) Brainstorming about the needs of our library in 2045!

We agreed our library needs to remain in a centrally located, downtown location… preferably where it currently stands.
We agreed the marble second story reading area is stunning and classical.
We agreed the front of the library should stand permanently as a classical piece of archi
We agreed on flexibility as we work towards our future library space.

The consultant will be returning with his findings, thoughts, and our ideas. Then the city will be better equipped to make decisions.

I SUPPORT RESTORATION OF THE ATTLEBORO PUBLIC LIBRARY. May it last for generations to come.

TUESDAY EVENING: CITY COUNCIL – PROPOSED HUNTING ORDINANCE
The Ordinance Committee discussed a new proposed hunting ordinance. It passed 2-1 in the committee and will soon go to the entire City Council. I voted in
favor of the new ordinance.
1. The original hunting ordinance basically states that residents cannot use firearms on streets, sidewalks or any other public place in the city of Attleboro. I agree.
2. The new proposed ordinance also states that hunting cannot occur in parks and conservation land owned and controlled by the City of Attleboro. This is a logical extension
from the original ordinance. I agree.
3. But we don’t have language in the original hunting ordinance regarding hunting on private property. The new, proposed ordinance states "No person shall hunt on private
property, except with the written consent of the property owner or legal occupant thereof, which consent shall be dated not more than one year prior to the act complained of."
4. I support the need for hunters to procure written permission from property owners. It should be WRITTEN permission, not just verbal permission. If there was just "verbal" permission,
if an incident occurred there could potentially be "he said, she said" issues. Written permission protects both the property owner and the hunter. If I was a hunter I would want written
permission to hunt on private property.
5. Hunters have told me they will steer clear of private property when they see NO HUNTING posted signs. That is fine and I applaud them for steering clear of posted areas.
But I cannot legislate that all private owners put up no hunting signs on their property. That decision is up to each individual owner. I don’t have a NO HUNTING sign on my half acre of land.
6. The new ordinance recommends a fine of $300 for each offense. The original ordinance had no teeth in it, no fines at all. I support a fine if a hunter violates the new hunting ordinance.
But I also hope we never need to fine anybody.
7. I believe there is a place in our society and in our city for hunting. I am not trying to take away a hunter’s rifle. But as a city councilor it is my duty to protect citizens of Attleboro when they are
walking in parks, city conservation lands and all city property.
8. Hunters have a right to hunt and bear arms in safe, permissable areas.

ATTLEBORO IS A REAL CITY. ATTLEBORO IS BIGGER THAN:

BURLINGTON, VERMONT
CONCORD, NEW HAMPSHIRE
LEWISTON & BANGOR, MAINE
HOLYOKE, BURLINGTON & NORWOOD, MASSACHUSETTS
ANNAPOLIS, MARYLAND

WEDNESDAY:
1. I visited a senior citizen in financial distress and helped her figure out her property tax payments.

2. I attended the library board of trustees meeting.

THURSDAY:
1. I went to the Attleboro HS-Bishop Feehan baseball game. Hayward Field is in good shape thanks to the Dept. Of Recreation!

FRIDAY:
1. I spoke at Volunteer Day at the Elk’s club.
2. I attended a meeting of the steering committee trying to create a permanent shelter for homeless in Attleboro.

SATURDAY:
1. I met with the Dept. of Recreation staff regarding future and present capital projects.

THU

Save our Fire Fighters!

SAVE A FIREFIGHTER TODAY!

I was proud of my fellow city councilors tonite. We voted 10-0 to spend $22,500 to purchase a brand new gear washer for the Union Street fire station. What’s a gear washer, you ask? And why does the South Attleboro fire station still have a 20 year old, outdated, inefficient gear washer.

A gear washer washes and cleans out the fire fighters Personal Protective Equipment (PPI) after a fire. It removes the cancer causing carcinogens which build up on the trousers, boots, gloves, everything a fire fighter is wearing. It takes a long time to clean and dry clothing in the current 25 year old Union Street Gear washer and the 20 year old South Attleboro station gear washer. If another fire occurs before their PPI gear is cleaned and dried… then the fire fighters have to retrieve their wet gear… throw them on and speed off to the next fire…. with possible carcinogens still on them.

Two-thirds of our fire fighters have two sets of PPI’s, which is recommended for their safety. But 36 Attleboro fire fighters only have one PPI due to the expense to purchase a second set. CLEAN PPI’s AND A NEW GEAR WASHERS WILL SAVE OUR FIRE FIGHTERS LIVES.

Nationally, fire fighters live to an average of about 55 years old… many of them die prematurely with cancer. Fire fighters are stricken by cancer 2.5 times more than the national average. Of course, when cancer occurs we can’t be certain how or why it happens… but we have an educated guess that firefighters frequently get cancer because of the carcinogens in the burning buildings and smoke.

We need 36 more PPI’s for our fire fighters. We also need another new gear washer for the South Attleboro fire stations. Currently, So. Attlboro firefighters have a 20 year old gear washer…. New gear washers can wash 4 or 5 PPI’s at a time…. with increased effectiveness and safety. NEW GEAR WASHERS SAVE FIREFIGHTERS LIVES!

Most of our city councilors spoke out tonite… including yours truly. Take a look at the video of tonight’s (April 2nd) meeting…. We met for 2.5 hours… the fire dept. was the very last item of business. So fast forward and watch the end of tonight’s meeting.

I was very proud of the city council tonight. But we still have more work to do.

1. We need to approve funding another new gear washer for the South Attleboro station…

2. We need to fund 36 more PPI’s (Personal Protective Equipment) so every firefighters has two sets of PPI’s…

3. We need to protect our fire fighters from the scourge of cancer that threatens them every working day.

Thank you Chief LaChance, for advocating for Attleboro’s fire fighters!

TY WATERMAN, CITY COUNCILOR AT-LARGE

TyWaterman1918
508-577-1412 (cell)