Please provide a brief biographical background on yourself. What should voters know about you?
David Parry has lived in India, London, New York, Buffalo, and Boston.
Resident of Southborough for 40 years.
University degrees from Cambridge, Harvard and Columbia.
Profession: Architect, Urban Designer and City Planner.
Projects include the following —
New York City — Development of Roosevelt Island (new town on island).
Buffalo — Plan for restoration of 15 blocks of historic “Theater District”.
Boston — Capital Planning. Manager of State Building Design & Construction.
Marlborough — Director of City Planning — 1985 to 1994.
Why are you running?
I was elected to the Southborough Planning Board in 1985 and 1993, and to the Select Board for 3 terms from 1994 to 2003. The current Select Board needs help, and I believe I can assist meaningfully, because of my long experience. We need more leadership, more effective management, lower property taxes, more long range planning and higher objectives. I can assist effectively by using my city planning skills. I always seek openness and maximum participation.
In regards to recent action regarding the St. Mark’s Street park and regional dispatch center, how should citizen voices be integrated prior to Town Meeting?
The Regional Dispatch agreement was a DISASTER waiting to happen, for two main reasons: (1). We lose control over budgets. We do NOT need regional bureaucrats setting their own pay scales, rewarding themselves, setting their own budget, and leaving our Town Meeting with no power to CUT their expenses. And (2), a new but empty Public Safety building. We certainly did NOT build a costly new Public Safety building only to have no staff inside it , when someone goes there to get help !
What are the lessons learned from the St. Mark’s Street park project? If elected, how should the board use these lessons moving forward?
The St Marks Rd Project was a classic example of government waste and abuse. WHY? Because the Town spent over one million dollars to provide wealthy St Marks School with a free parking lot. St Marks should have paid the entire cost themselves. They donate annually about $50,000 in lieu of paying taxes (PILOT). That means it will take 20 years of annual PILOT payments, from St Marks, to equal the cost of this one parking lot. The project is an IMPROPER GIFT from the Town to a wealthy private school. It should never have been approved.
What are the three biggest issues facing Southborough?
1. Traffic issues: (A) Congestion along Rte 9, and (B) Need new bridge across Rte 9 at Parkerville Rd, to connect north and south sides of town, and three schools.
2. Property taxes increasing — caused by more children from new housing created in response to: (A) The State MBTA train station high-density zoning, and (B) the State Law, Chapter 40B, affordable high-density housing.
3. Declining local businesses in the historic “downtown”. Without an attractive, active downtown, the town will lose its distinct character.