Editor’s Note: Below are statements from Marion Planning Board candidates Tucker Burr, Andrew Daniel, W. Dale Jones and Barrett Levenson. The Town of Marion will hold its Election on Friday, May 13, at the Cushing Community Center.
Tucker Burr – Marion Planning Board
My name is Tucker Burr and I am running for Planning Board. I’ve been living and working in Marion for almost my entire life. I grew up on Ichabod Lane, waited for the Sippican School bus, attended Tabor Academy, and then went off to college and got a degree in mathematics. I briefly worked out West before I returned home 13 years ago to work in the family business. I met my wife, Luiza, here in Marion, while sailing. We have a black lab named Gus, and a house on Olde Knoll Road. My life is in Marion. I love this town. The unaffordability of housing in Marion is an issue that should be at the forefront of the Planning Board. When I first moved back here there were no apartments available and so I rented a place in New Bedford. When I did manage find an apartment in town, I was forced out after only a year when it was torn down for condos. I imagine this is a similar experience for those looking to downsize. Marion has a wonderful inventory of family-sized houses but not many other options. For those that cannot yet afford, and those on a fixed income looking to reduce costs, staying in the community in a terrible challenge. The Planning Board can help address this issue by encouraging many different types of housing developments, so people in different stages of life and circumstances can stay here. I believe my experience working at Burr Brothers Boats will help me in many ways. In running the company for the past four years, I have experience organizing the operation to get things done. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, is the experience I have working for many years in the customer service department. The culture of the Planning Board needs to be a professional one but, in a small town like ours, it must also be welcoming and kind. Going in front of the Planning Board should be an efficient and well understood process. I look forward to bringing a level of professionalism, organization, and approachability to the Planning Board meetings. Ensuring this town is a place that future generations will want to move back to and work is a goal that is near and dear to me.
Andrew Daniel – Marion Planning Board
Hello, my name is Andrew Daniel and I’m running for an open position on the Marion Planning Board. I have lived in town for 13 years, and my wife and I have three children. I have always felt it’s important to be active in the community we live in. I served on the board in years past and I am proud of the things we accomplished during that time and would like to continue that work. I am a licensed construction supervisor and currently the Facilities Director for the Town of Rochester. With my professional experience and previous time I served as the vice chair of the Planning Board, I do believe that I am the best candidate. I enter the race with no agenda but to make decisions that benefit “ALL” of Marion’s taxpayers. Marion is in need for business growth to ease the tax burden put on its residents. I would like to see smart growth and multi-use buildings. The property in the industrial zone being vacated by Lockheed Martin is critical for Marion’s future. We can’t see that property go to tax exemption; small businesses that could provide needed services to the residents would be welcomed.
Barrett Levenson – Marion Planning Board
Nearly 250 years ago, Thomas Paine wrote that “Immediate necessity makes many things convenient…” Today, the Town of Marion stands at a crossroads, a chance to plan for the future while attempting to manage the present, bridled by decisions made in the not-too-distant past. Now, more than ever, we must not allow ourselves to be shortsighted and act from necessity. It’s time we embraced Common Sense, considered the future of our children, our seniors, and all who fall in between. To provide the guardrails that enable thriving local business while protecting the character and integrity of our beloved town. If elected to the Planning Board, I pledge to bring an educated and grounded youthful energy, ensuring a balanced view, working to align the needs of all of Marion’s citizens today while considering our needs of the future. Paine also wrote that “A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom. But the tumult soon subsides. Time makes more converts than reason.” Marion needs someone who understands the power of positive change while preserving the character and strength of our town. As a young professional working and living in Marion with parents who have chosen to retire in this town, I am well positioned to see and understand both sides of the demographic spectrum. Having built a home from the ground up in Marion, I have worked closely with the Conservation and Building Commissions and therefore have an understanding of the impacts that decisions have on residents and businesses. Vote for Common Sense when you head to the polls.