Rep. Hogan reflects on ‘victories’ for her district and beyond
By Ed Karvoski Jr, Contributing Writer.
Hudson – State Rep. Kate Hogan, D-Stow, was first elected to represent the 3rd Middlesex District during the 2008 recession. Now in her third term with an improving economy, Hogan is grateful that state funding became available to assist her district and beyond.
“This term, we were able to provide a lot more resources,” said Hogan, who is being challenged in this November’s election by Paddy Dolan, R-Maynard. “I was involved with legislation that gave Hudson and surrounding communities victories in everything from transportation funding to continuing our state and region’s economic recovery.”
As chair of the Elder Caucus, Hogan said, “For this session, I’m the proudest that I was able to get the Senior SAFE program passed and into the budget.”
Senior SAFE was officially launched at a gathering in March with local and state officials at the Hudson Senior Center. Among the attendees was State Fire Marshal Stephen D. Coan with whom Hogan worked to establish the program.
“It will be critical in saving lives,” she said. “For me, the program came out of deaths in my district’s senior community from fire, smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning.”
The program was modeled after Student Awareness of Fire Education (SAFE) for children under 18, which reduced fire-related deaths within that age group by 71 percent. Senior SAFE provided grants to 205 fire departments statewide to offer safety education.
Funding for roadwork in Hudson this year was sponsored by state Sen. Jamie Eldridge, D-Acton, and secured by Hogan in the House of Representatives budget.
“We met with town officials and asked what projects have been lagging so that we can play catch-up in terms of maintenance and repair,” Hogan explained.
This included $4 million for the revitalization and reconstruction of Main and South streets, where many of the town’s locally-owned small businesses are located.
“It makes it easier to come in and out of the downtown area,” Hogan noted. “It really is economic development when you’re making it a priority to get folks to shop locally.”
Another $1 million was expended to replace the aging Cox Street bridge, which was a safety concern because of its proximity to the Hudson Fire Department Headquarters.
State Rep. Danielle Gregoire, D-Marlborough, joined the Hogan and Eldridge delegation to secure $5 million for the reconstruction of the roadway connecting Routes 290 and 495, which crosses the Hudson and Marlborough town line.
“It’s an important exit for Hudson and its businesses, and needed an upgrade,” Hogan said.
Hogan found another way for her district to benefit through the accessibility of these highways. She reached out to the 495/MetroWest Partnership and authored the 495/MetroWest Suburban Edge Community Commission, which aims to ensure that edge communities participate in and benefit from state initiatives and resources.
“When you begin a process, a commission is the best way because you’re pulling together all the experts,” Hogan noted.
A suburban edge community is defined as a municipality with a maximum population of 35,000 that is not adjacent to a gateway city. There are 31 eligible communities in the partnership’s service area including Hudson, Northborough, Southborough and Westborough. Massachusetts currently has 26 gateway cities including Worcester.
Co-sponsoring this amendment were 14 state representatives including Matt Beaton, R-Shrewsbury; Tom Conroy, D-Wayland; Carolyn Dykema, D-Holliston; and Gregoire; as well as three senators including Eldridge and Michael Moore, D-Millbury.
Hogan hopes the collaboration will help secure additional funds and resources to the towns within her district consisting of Hudson, Bolton, Maynard and Stow.
“By creating the larger 495/MetroWest region, it will be easier for us to have a bigger voice in the legislature,” she said. “On the state level, if we can clearly articulate what our towns need to move forward, then it helps us become sustainable and ready for the 21st century.”
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