Marion Selectmen Candidates

Editor’s Note: As we have done beginning in 2020, The Wanderer has invited candidates in contested races to submit up to 350 words about their candidacy for public office. This week we have the candidates for both the Marion and Mattapoisett Select Boards and the Marion Planning Board. On May 19, we will publish statements of candidates for Rochester School Committee and Select Board. Below are statements from Marion Select Board candidates Carleton “Toby” Burr and Dr. Ed Hoffer. The Town of Marion will hold its Election on Friday, May 13, at the Cushing Community Center.

Toby Burr – Marion Select Board

            Marion is a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family. I want to keep it that way. I have been on the Marine Resource Commission for over 30 years; was one of the founders of the Marion Business Community Association; and am a past president and current board member of the Massachusetts Marine Trade Association, an organization of over 200 marine businesses that promotes vocational education and works with state legislators. I graduated from Middlebury College and have an MBA from the University of Virginia. I was president of Burr Brothers Boats until 2017. My son, Tucker Burr, now runs the company. I’m running because the Town is in financial trouble. Our roads, our buildings, and our water and sewer lines need work, while our property taxes are high and our sewer and water rate is about the highest in the state. Many people in town are feeling financially stressed. We are in a bind, and I want to help. The best way to ease the tax burden is to add small business. Small business offers goods and services, pays taxes, water and sewer bills, and demands very little public services. I am very interested in the departure of Lockheed Martin. The use of this land is critical to our town’s future. I would like to see it replaced with an industrial park. It looks like we are on a course for 341 units of senior housing. Senior housing is needed, but Lockheed Martin is the only land in town zoned for light industry. I think townspeople should have a chance to weigh in before plans are drafted. I offer a willingness to listen, an ambition to learn, and a commitment to transparency. If elected, I will do my very best to advise the taxpayer about choices and consequences. I will share what I know, because I believe we are stronger together. Speaking and being heard is vital to a small, friendly, affordable community. Great ideas matter, and they can come from anywhere, anytime, from anyone. I will listen, and you will be heard.

Dr. Edward Hoffer – Marion Select Board

            I am running for the open seat on Marion’s Select Board at the urging of many friends and town volunteers. Since giving up my daily commute to Boston, I have been able to get deeply involved in town affairs and am ready to put in the time needed to serve the town on the Board. I have been widely active and gained perspective on how the town works, serving on the Zoning Board of Appeals for the past three years, the Board of Health and the Friends of the Council on Aging. I chaired the Board of Health for two years, leading the town safely through the worst of the pandemic. I served on the town’s Emergency Management Committee and developed a good relationship with the town administrator and the chiefs of Police and Fire. I have also held leadership positions on many state and national organizations, including five years as treasurer of a national non-profit that increased my comfort with budgeting and audit. Working with the Age-Friendly Marion Committee, I gained a deep understanding of one of the key issues facing Marion: how to allow our seniors, many life-long Marion residents, to stay here when they no longer want a larger home. I would work with developers and the Planning Board to encourage the building of the smaller homes and condominiums that this group wants. We are an aging town and must prepare for this. I would also work with the COA and volunteers to help seniors who want to remain in their homes to make the modifications that make this easier and safer. It is critical to get more of the talents of our residents used. Too many groups consist of the same people staying forever; turnover is healthy and must be encouraged. Our crushing water/sewer bills need to come down, and this can best be done by getting more residents on town sewer, to spread the fixed costs over a broader base. Many of the town’s needs can be assisted by grant funding, and we should investigate hiring a grant writer on at least a part-time basis.

Leave A Comment...