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A week or two ago I was driving on Shaker Rd. and was stuck in traffic behind a street sweeper. At the time I didn’t think twice about it but I recently had to be downtown and I noticed the streets there hadn’t been swept at all. Why would The DPW sweep the streets on a rural road before they tackled the visible place, our downtown?

Tuesday paper the 25th of June. My comments are for your paper and Dave Flaherty. (who I will send an e-mail also) First; There’s a page and a half noting Westfield’s budget and Mr. Flaherty’s, Alternate 5 Year Plan. All this information is quite extensive, and for the average citizen to comprehend would take some time to truly understand and I’m not sure it would be. Is Mr. Flaherty putting all this information out to note his financial expertise in budgeting or a political comment for re-election? Secondly and most importantly: In Mr. Flaherty’s letter/comments, it’s noted that there’s a public meeting on Tuesday at 6 PM, is that tonight or next Tuesday? What time do the papers get out to all of the stores and home deliveries. ” A very, very short time to try and comprehend all of his alternative thoughts! And finally, Third; Is it that important to fill the pages of the Westfield News with a story, that for the most part is meaningless for the average resident, in such a short notice? Shouldn’t there be a request/requirement for such important issues to be printed earlier than a couple of hours? I’ve seen other articles printed by this paper with the same issue, a story and oh by the way the meetings tonight?
I’m all for news and information, but when reading something and not really having the time digest the information and reacting is like reading (excuse me) a obituary? We at The Westfield News encourage all of our elected officials to submit columns but we cannot control when they are sent. Some submitted columns are brief while others can be lengthy. It’s all due to subject matter. We also received the following from Councilor Flaherty: Thanks for taking the time to read the article and give me your feedback. I wrote the article due to my frustration with this year’s budget process and to explain things to people. This year the City Council has only had the budget for less than 2 weeks. The timeframe is very compressed. I often talk about multi-year budgets, and people have asked me to share what I would do in a multi-year plan. So, this year, I decided to write an article about it. I agree the timing wasn’t the greatest, but it does take time to do the analysis and to write the articles. And, like I said, we got the proposed budget less than 2 weeks ago. The Tuesday meeting was indeed last night. The Westfield News and the City Clerk had published the schedule for about a week and a half. As far as the length of the article goes, I’m long-winded sometimes, but it take a lot to explain things in enough detail. I, and the newspaper, generally get great feedback and thanks for these articles. People want to hear directly from us, and they want details – not spin and talking points. I’m always happy to discuss things with people in-person or via e-mail if you have any questions or concerns. Regards, Dave. P.S. I agree that financial stuff and spreadsheets can be rather boring at times.

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