MARLBOROUGH – Mayor Arthur Vigeant presented a positive outlook in his 11th “State of the City” address on Jan. 23.
In a 10-minute speech at the start of the City Council meeting, Vigeant said the state of the city “could not be stronger” as the city continues to attract businesses.
He touted that the city’s home values rose 18% last year, but “we still have the lowest tax bill in the region.” He noted that the tax bill for the average homeowner in Marlborough rose about $99 – in contrast to other communities, which saw tax increases in the hundreds, said Vigeant.
Vigeant also praised the creation of a community page on the city’s website so that residents can keep track of developments.
“We want to provide factual information,” he said, mentioning “rumors” about proposed plans that appeared on social media, such as building the senior center in the middle of Ward Park.
The mayor mentioned the proposed projects on Lincoln and Mechanic streets that will “tie French Hill to downtown.”
Vigeant brought up the Marlborough Public Library project, which is halfway completed. He welcomed the new director, Sara Belisle, and said he’s looking forward to the grand opening.
In addition to Belisle, the city welcomed a new human resources director John Harmon, school superintendent Mary Murphy and executive director for the Community Development Authority Chad Parker along with eight police officers and 10 firefighters, over the past year.
He thanked the now-former governor and lieutenant governor, Charlie Baker and Karyn Polito, for “their continued great relationship,” including the recent granting of $2 million in MassWorks grants to the city.
“It’s the perfect time to thank them,” said Vigeant.
He said he looks forward to working with Gov. Maura Healey and Lt. Gov. Kim Driscoll.
In addition to the improvements and continuing developments, Marlborough is one of three cities in Massachusetts to receive a dedicated plaque placed at the Old Common Cemetery. This honor was received by the Massachusetts Sons of the American Revolution. The city also held the largest community Medal of Liberty Recognition event in Massachusetts.
One item Vigeant would like to accomplish soon is an increase the seniors’ residential property tax workoff abatement program from $1,000 to $1,500. Applications for this year’s program are now available through the Council on Aging; applicants have a deadline of Feb. 17.
For information and to access the documents, visit tinyurl.com/5by6pt98.