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Author Archives: baldbil

Ward 6 Recount Ruling Favors City

  Megan Riccardi To Be Sworn In Tomorrow Night Full Council Inauguration On Tap  By William Legault   So it’s over. Nine days of testimony. A very aggressive and spirited case was presented by Jerry Ryan’s lawyer Mary-Ellen Manning. A true kitchen sink approach where everything that could be thrown into the fray was indeed thrown.  The defense team, consisting of three lawyers, one for Ward 6 Councillor-Elect Megan Riccardi, and two representing the city sparred and parried well. What is the end result? The election stands, Salem will seat a full city council tomorrow, and the lawyers will get ...

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A USAF Christmas Story – 1979

Christmas Eve With TACAMO  Yokota Air Base Flight Line In Japan By YoungAirman The flight line is quiet and still. A deep black night sky blankets the earth. Stars shine and twinkle soundlessly in the cold winter air. An Air Force parka and gloves, two layers of thermal underwear, and a ushanka hat with ear flaps down are keeping me warm. On my right shoulder is an M-16A1 with a 20 round magazine holding 20 5.56mm NATO copper jacketed bullets. There are five more magazine on the web belt around my waist. It’s Christmas Eve 1979. I am 19 and ...

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Injunction Unction What’s Your Function?

Ryan Lawsuit Is Politics As Usual The Lawyers Win, The Ugliness Continues, Salem Loses  By William Legault Why? That is the only real question to be asked regarding tomorrows hearing at the courthouse in Lawrence. A few years ago a political brawl was initiated in Salem over the use of a single word. Sanctuary. One word in a title, that in the context of the document it headed, represented an ideal and not a reality. Tomorrow Jerry Ryan and his team will appear before a judge in Lawrence in an attempt to continue that brawl by asking for an injunction. ...

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3 Questions For Brian Kennedy – Peabody Essex Museum CEO

Brian Kennedy of the PEM Answers Our Questions The October Season, A Salem Vision, Collaboration With The City By William Legault   Brian Kennedy, born in Dublin, Ireland and seasoned in the world of museums around the globe has taken the reins at the Peabody Essex Museum. He arrives at a critical time not only for the museum itself, with its newly opened 40,000 square foot wing, but also for its relationship with Salem and its people. Recent years have found that relationship to be fractured as the PEMs mission became more focused on art rather than on the original ...

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A Review – Salem Trolley & A Christmas Carol

Gallows Hill Museum And Salem Trolley – The 33rd Year of Scrooge Christmas Ghosts With Local Flavor By J. Smithfield Oppenheimer III/Photos by KWTKensington   Every year the Salem Trolley and the Gallows Hill Museum Theater get together for recurring performances of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. The production takes place at four different venues, one of them being aboard an actual Salem Trolley. This year J. Smithfield Oppenheimer III, along with photographer and fellow local theater aficionado Katherine Winthorp Tudor Kensington decided to explore this years production. We arrived at Salemdipity during Monday nights snowstorm at the recommended ...

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Thoughts: City Council, Schools, Taxes, Historic Cemeteries

Four Thoughts For Salem Government Or Four Pipe Dreams For Salem Government By William Legault   As we approach the end of the year in Salem city government I’m taking a few moments to consider few things of interest in the year gone by and the year that approaches. CITY COUNCIL The City Council chambers featured a lot of drama and theatrics this year. The council was clearly fractured. It was the first year that I can remember where some councillors actually said publicly that they did not like another councillor. You can place blame for that as you wish. ...

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24 Days Of Salem Christmas – Holiday Shopping

Where Will You Shop On 24 Days Of Christmas? By Kris Kringle   Beginning on Sunday, 1 December we will begin a 24 day series featuring local business that we think deserve your attention as you shop for gifts. Some days will feature a single business. others may feature two or three. After all, there are lots of spots to shop in Salem, whether you know it or not. The days of big department stores in downtown Salem are gone. Highland Avenue feature a couple of them. But we will not be focusing on them. Our focus will be on ...

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ELECTION 2019 – Ward Six Recount Monday

A One Vote Riccardi Margin On The Line Déjà vu All Over Again for Ryan And Barton By William Legault   It’s been said, most notably by author Thomas Wolfe that “you can’t go home again.” A couple of years ago Jerry Ryan, who was raised in Ward 6, moved from Ward Four to Ward 6. Little did he, or we know, that his old tradition of close elections and recounts in his former ward, would fit in well with the apparent new tradition of close elections and recounts in his new ward. This will be Ryan’s second recount in ...

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Highland Avenue Zoning – Civil Discussion Is Needed

355 – 373 Highland Avenue Again On The Hot Seat Is the Need For Business Or Residential? By William Legault   The following definition is borrowed from Wikepedia. “Zoning is the process of dividing land in a municipality into zones (e.g. residential, industrial) in which certain land uses are permitted or prohibited. In addition, the sizes, bulk, and placement of buildings may be regulated. The type of zone determines whether planning permission for a given development is granted. Zoning may specify a variety of outright and conditional uses of land. It may also indicate the size and dimensions of land ...

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ELECTION 2019 – The Day After

A Few Thoughts On The Election By William Legault   It is the day after another contentious election cycle here in Salem. Lots of political noise and thunder resonated across the city over the last six  months. Despite that the turnout was low. Noise and thunder alone do not make a storm. The at-large race with the exception of Conrad Prosniewski at the top of the ticket was too close to call until the last precinct came in. Almost 800 votes separated first place from second place. But less than 300 votes separated second place from sixth place. Arthur Sargent ...

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