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Guest MINDSETTER™ Stephen Brewer: Why I’m Running for State Senate

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

 

State Sen. Stephen Brewer, (D) Barre

When making any major life decision, a person often weighs many factors in their head. Each term, when I register as a candidate for the Massachusetts State Senate, I reflect on my past terms and on how grateful I am to have the support of my constituents, friends, and family.

To serve as an elected official is a privilege; it is not one to be taken lightly and it is an honor I am proud to be given. When I first decided to run for public office, it was because I was inspired by so many great presidents, governors, and political leaders in history. Now I continue to serve because of the great things we are accomplishing here in Massachusetts and what still remains to be done in the future.

I have always felt a life in public service results in great rewards. Although it can be a challenge, each and every obstacle is a learning experience. In 2008, Massachusetts, along with the rest of the nation and the entire world, suffered a massive economic downturn. People were out of jobs and funding was cut for many key services throughout the Commonwealth. There was a time when the outlook was bleak. Today, things are looking better.

During my time in the House of Representatives and the Senate, I have served as Chair of many committees and have maintained my commitment to helping my constituents. Currently, as Chair of the chief budget writing committee for the Commonwealth, I believe that I am in a position to continue to work diligently to lead the Senate in choices that make sure Massachusetts spends its money wisely and in areas that benefit the most residents.

Since becoming Chair of this committee, we have accomplished many things that I am very proud of. The Bay State received a boost in its bond rating to the highest rating ever, and cities and towns are realizing millions of dollars in saving through reforms to municipal health care plans.

One of the greatest accomplishments that I am most proud of is the state’s commitment to our local municipal partners. In this year’s budget alone, cities and towns will receive nearly $900 million in unrestricted local aid that will be directly appropriated and not subject to reversions or end of year surpluses. We were also able to increase funding for education and released $200 million in transportation funds, the largest amount in the history of the state, to go towards local infrastructure projects.

These are all good signs that point to the recovery of our economy. Although we continue to be mindful and cautious with our spending, the work of the Massachusetts Senate is not done and my work is not done. I chose to run for re-election this year because I am certain that we can continue this upward momentum. As a lifetime resident of Barre, I am pleased to be able to bring the needs and concerns of Central and Western Massachusetts to the forefront of the work of the legislature.

 

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