While running the risk of sounding like a broken record on the subject, we here at The East Providence Post would encourage the incoming City Council and School Committee members, those to be seated Monday evening, Dec. 3, to discard the useless and seemingly endless grandstanding of their predecessors and set an immediate course of cooperation with the Budget Commission. In our humble opinion, it would not only behoove the newcomers to do so, but it would likely also go a long way in creating a sense of mutual respect and understanding between the three governing bodies, which has been sorely lacking.
All too often over the last year since the state over-seers were empowered to run the city, those in elected office have forsaken the reality of the situation. Instead, they have taken to posturing on issues they knowingly had little control of, while pandering to uninformed residents who did not fully grasp the powers the Commission was embodied to wield.
It is important to point out, doing so for seemingly the upteenth time, the Budget Commission — not the Council, Committee or even the City Manager — runs the day-to-day operations of East Providence. The Budget Commission is in charge of all hirings and firings. It sets the particulars and parameters of every governing decision, those of most import and otherwise.
It remains a bit jarring considering the length of time the Commission has been here, but too many residents of the city to this day still don’t understand this fact. It’s also disconcerting that too many of those formerly in elected office didn’t acknowledge their limitations to them.
Those days, however, have hopefully come to an end. The new Councilors and Committee members should embrace what in reality are their positions as strong advocates for the people, rather than touting their own agendas. They should argue on behalf of the city based on substance not bluster.
If they do so, if they act in good conscience instead of expedient politics, then they make actually get something of significance accomplished, which most of their predecessors failed to do.