Friday, June 1, 2012

Martinek Launches Campaign Web Video

Local campaigning for public office has entered the 21st century.

Southbridge town council candidate Dennis Martinek has released through his campaign website as well as YouTube the first in a planned series of campaign videos.

The animated power-point-like presentation focuses on the issue of Southbridge property taxes.

If this presentation is emblematic of the upcoming installments in the series it marks a welcome development in local campaigning. Rather than repeating the tired insubstantial nostrums and unfounded happy talk about which I’ve complained repeatedly, Martinek’s presentation provides solid factual data.

I can only hope that future installments will not only stick to this distinction, but amplify it with concrete proposals for actions to correct Southbridge’s ills.


  1. I like where he's coming from but I would have a few questions about his video.

    He says we need commercial investment in the town. Any ideas?

    He said the budget is bloated. Where would cuts come from?

    Would you translate that in Spanish and post it in Hispanic neighborhoods?

    There's no official language in the United States and minorities have votes.

  2. Anonymous 2:17,

    Thank you for your feedback...good questions, let me answer them for you.

    In doing this presentation, I didn't want it to go too long, so asking for specifics if more than fair.

    With regards to commercial investment in town, we have to decide, especially in light of the General Government Subcommittee meeting the other day, if we should be in the business of an industrial park or not. If so, we need a person with a track record of courting businesses to town, a real Director of Economic Development, that goes out to businesses to talk to the benefits of Southbridge. I came up with the Make Southbridge Home campaign, that has been bastardized. When I walk into a bank or a jewelery store in town, see a sticker, I think to myself, I already live here...who are you targeting? Getting businesses interested is hard work, and expecting them to come to us is a pipe dream.

    We finally have to address the issue of parking. We have a few gems like Zoe's and Crown Chicken that can survive, the former, due to it's location and quick in and out service/or delivery, the latter, because a lot of clientele walk, or, park across the street. No major chain that will provide jobs will move downtown if people can't park. A coffee shop is a nice idea, but you're going to get the majority of business from walk in traffic, which is not likely to sustain business for long.

    It's all about the marketing. A Director of Economic Development and planning should be able to comfortably approach businesses with an objective and a call to action, which can include TIF's, provided that they create jobs. It has to be a win-win situation, and not lopsided.

    Finally, no one is going to come here when they view our Town Council in action, and see our property tax rates, water and sewer, and trash tax. If we want to be an attractive community, we have to act like we're an attractive community.

    The budget is bloated. I'm going to hold off on this one so that I can discuss it at next weekends debate. Suffice it to say, though, that the Town Manager's office is a good place to start, and relying on the people we pay good money to to do their jobs instead of hiring others to do it for them is a large cost savings.

    If I understand you correctly, you're asking me to translate the presentation to Spanish? If so, I'd love to, but I don't speak Spanish. If someone would like to help me do that, I'd be glad to have a Spanish version. Using online translation tools, I've been told by friends that do speak un poco Espanol that it doesn't always come out the same.

    I hope and pray to God that the minority community comes out in droves this election cycle, along with everyone else. They are an important and well needed voice of our community that is all to often overlooked.

    Any ideas you have on getting out the vote would be a benefit for all of the challengers, and I for one would love to see that.



  3. Why is it that people don't take to this guy, who to his credit is at least telling people up front where he stands? Are the people of this town really that stupid that they'll be supporting people who refuse to state their positions? I'm voting for Martinek, Lazo, and Heid. Moriarity's supporting John Giorgio and Peloquin's a flake. Wake up Southbridge. You'll wind up with more council members like the one who covered for her sister when arrested, or the one who paid back his/her daughters pilfering of funds from a local business.


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