The allegations of vote-buying occurring right outside Springfield City Hall have dropped a hand grenade into a historic but quiet municipal election. It has set off a wave of condemnation, conspiracies and snickering across Springfield and within its political class.
With his mayoral campaign in mortal danger, Springfield at-large Councilor Justin Hurst held a defiant press conference Thursday morning, vigorously denying his campaign engaged in vote-buying. The allegations, which are reportedly now before federal and state investigators, arose after early-voters swamped Election Commission staff Saturday.
Over $21 million in bonding was before the Springfield City Council last Monday, weeks after Mayor Domenic Sarno successfully pushed his budget through. Nearly all of these were normal capital projects that do not belong in the budget anyway.
SPRINGFIELD—Two members were absent. Two that were remote dropped out. Two stuck it out virtually. But for the first time since the shroud of the coronavirus fell upon humanity, the City Council of Massachusetts’s third largest city met in person.
While the legislature lumbers through its own district maps for the next ten years, the same process is playing out on the municipal level. Wards and precincts are changing only slightly as Springfield’s population was largely stable.
SPRINGFIELD—Gladys Oyola, the head of the Springfield Election Commission, will be the next City Clerk after the City Council unanimously selected her. Last week, a search committee had slimmed down a field of 72 applicants down to three. On Monday, Oyola, an unsurprising though eminently qualified choice, prevailed.
Flux is returning to the Springfield City Clerk’s office after the current clerk, Tasheena Davis, tendered her resignation effective June 1. Mayor Domenic Sarno, in a press release, announced that Davis would return to her former employ, the city Law Department. More controversially, Sarno has
UPDATED 2/3/21 1:14PM: To include details of Gomez’s resignation letter. Springfield State Senator Adam Gomez, who also held the Ward 1 City Council seat, has announced his resignation from the municipal legislature. In a press release his senate office issued, Gomez said he was leaving
SPRINGFIELD—On Monday, the City Council dispensed with a financial order left over from the last meeting and passed first step to reform an ordinance that regulates tax breaks in the city. Being the last meeting before an election, the Council also formally set the city’s
SPRINGFIELD—The legislative sausage-making continued for another meeting of the City Council Monday. A veto override, regulations for vehicles of all shapes and sizes, and historic preservation were all on the menu. Virtually all went by without incident or political indigestion, even the much-awaited Election Notification