Editorial: Change is East Providence governance starts smoothly

Posted 3/31/19

The City of East Providence commemorated the change in its form of government a couple of weeks ago with great fanfare during inauguration ceremonies held inside the high school auditorium, but since …

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Editorial: Change is East Providence governance starts smoothly

Posted

The City of East Providence commemorated the change in its form of government a couple of weeks ago with great fanfare during inauguration ceremonies held inside the high school auditorium, but since that evening two Tuesdays ago it has pretty much been business as usual on Taunton Avenue.

The only real difference in how the city has operated so far under the new mayor-council setup was actually the swearing in event itself, which usually takes place on a far smaller scale in the council chamber at City Hall.

The move to the EPHS auditorium seemed appropriate, considering the magnitude of the moment and the number of residents inspired to attend. The room was full of people and one can assume optimism of what lay ahead.

Far from a critical observation, the fact that things have run relatively normal in the first few weeks of the new governmental structure could be construed as a positive occurrence.

While the School Committee remains basically in tact with the same members, it was able to continue plotting the course of readying for construction of the new high school. For the considerable differently composed Council and the mayor's office, however, those now in place have barely had a chance to settle into their positions, never mind attempt to initiate any substantive pieces of legislation.

The new mayor did face an immediate spot of bother last weekend as the season's first significant weather event was forecasted and did indeed take place. To its credit, his office was out in front of the situation, gathering together all of the respective officials involved to prepare and execute a response while also issuing guidance to the general public.

If the orderly manner in which the executive performed in this instance is any indication, then it would seem his office is off on the proper track.

The matter-of-fact, direct approach might just be the breath of fresh air the voters opted for in approving the change in form in the first place and certainly what the city needs going forward.

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Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.