Anthony Galluccio

Anthony Galluccio
2003 Candidate for Cambridge City Council

Home address:
30 Normandy Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138

Contact information:
Tel: 617-492-3366

Send contributions to:
The Committee to Elect Anthony Galluccio
86 Buckingham St. #1
Cambridge, MA 02138

Anthony is currently serving in his fifth term as a City Councillor, a decade of service that includes a term as Mayor from 2000-2001, where he was the youngest Mayor elected in the city's history under the Plan E form of government. Raised in Cambridge along with his two sisters by his mother Nancy after his father's death, Anthony graduated from the Cambridge Public Schools, Providence College, and Suffolk University Law School.

As chair of the City Council's housing subcommittee, Anthony led efforts to appropriate the largest amount of local funding in the city's history, roughly $9 million for affordable housing next year, and the creation and preservation of 464 affordable housing units over the last two years, including the long term preservation of Walden Square Apartments and Columbia Terrace. In 1997, sponsored the City's Inclusionary Housing Ordinance requiring private developers to contribute 15% affordable units for any development of 10,000 square feet or 10 units or more. This year sponsored a request for a legislative charge through a home-rule petition to require universities to comply with this ordinance (currently exempted by state law). Efforts to increase means tested affordable housing units must stay united and should not be divided around the issue of rent control. Anthony has never supported rent control of privately owned housing and does not believe it has been effective or fair in assisting low-income residents. He believes that the current initiative is both irresponsible and divisive.

Quality of Life:
Very busy these days.

Municipal Finance & Government:
Anthony's efforts and support of City Manager Robert Healy over the last ten years have made Cambridge the most fiscally sound cities in Massachusetts, including a AAA bond rating, one of the lowest residential tax rates, a recently approved 30% residential tax exemption, and lower tax payments for senior citizens. A fresh look at Plan E is needed, especially regarding a democratic/popular election of Mayor by the voters.

Environment and Public Health:
Anthony helped create the Cambridge Health Alliance, which has grown to be the most successful public health network in Massachusetts. As a City Councillor, Anthony has strongly supported the expansion of the Alliance, its neighborhood health centers, the renovation of Neville Manor, and the creation of a new nursing and assisted living center. Anthony has long been a leader of making recreation, parks and youth programs a top priority. His public health efforts have been consistent including support for youth asthmas initiatives, fitness and strong support for mental health services of all types. Anthony also voted in favor of the recently smoking ban in Cambridge. Anthony has been a leader in continued reinvestment in a revolving tot-lot and park renovation process citywide. He has led efforts to build a new track at Danehy Park, appropriate funding for a new state of the art sports facility at Russell Field (work to begin this year), renovations to Donnelly Field (to begin this year), the acquisition of 238 Broadway for open space, and the construction of a new skateboard park on New Street, next to Danehy Park. Anthony also supported the Fresh Pond Reservation Protection Master Plan which has been recently completed with new landscaping, bike paths, and pedestrian crossing lights along Fresh Pond Parkway.

Land Use, Planning, Development, and Transportation:
Anthony has been an outspoken advocate to maintain existing bus routes and to expand bus routes in Cambridge. Supported permit large project review process and new parking demand management requirements for new development in Cambridge. He has been especially supportive of the Biotech industry and other low traffic commercial uses. In general Anthony has been a proponent of "smart growth" and of new housing construction citywide, especially in previously industrial areas near T subway stops.

University Relations:
Constant turnover of political leadership (Mayor) and 2 year terms of Council on our side, and a corporation hierarchy, autonomous deans and changing a Presidency makes this a complicated problem even that more difficult. I think that rather than horse trade over zoning and development in exchange for more money (which we really don't need or should trade zoning for) we should take responsibility for our own schools and City responsibilities as they do for their zoning. The In Lieu of Tax Payments are so small, less than 2 % of our budget they are not worth talking about and should be taken off the table as bargaining chips. We should zone the universities just as we would other corporate developers, reasonably but aggressively, and with our neighborhoods' interest at heart. How much universities do for our schools is a matter of being caring educators and good neighbors and should be a reflection on the Universities or traded for development rights. The Summer Academy is an example of how Universities if given decision-making and hiring power can establish successful programs within our schools. At the same time we should accept responsibility for the performance of our schools and not use the Universities as scapegoats. When we can reach an agreement with the Universities around zoning and public benefits it should be attempted. I have worked very hard to help reach an accord in Riverside and we are close to what may be a win-win (i.e. the neighborhood is protected from over-development and affordable housing and increased open space is created). In closing, Universities with billions in endowments (hardly the fledgling educational institutions the state was trying to give a helping hand hundreds of years ago) should be fairly taxed and should not be exempt for inclusionary zoning and other linkage requirements. This fair treatment would eliminate much of the hostility involved in town-gown relations.

Civic participation:
New Residents and transient residents must be engaged by community building (i.e. civic celebration, youth and family activities and the arts.) These things cost money, (i.e. Danehy Park family day, or the Central Square Dance Party) but must be expanded upon, examples being the skating rink on the Common and the new Skateboard Park at Danehy Park! A lack of civic participation is a nationwide problem facing cities across the nation, but through inclusive community events and civic involvement we can help combat it.

Cambridge Public Schools:
Anthony has been a vocal leader in making accountability and evaluation measures a system wide standard for our schools and for making CRLS a high performing centerpiece of our city's public schools. As Mayor he helped create the Cambridge-Harvard Summer Academy partnership for over 300 students and led the effort to rebuild Cambridge's vocational education program, where over 800 students now take courses, and helped create a new lab for CRLS at Biogen Corp.

Anthony worked extremely hard to have the School Committee act and work as a board of directors, using workshops and his role as a mediator to build consensus. Often School Committee Members act as individual elected officials (very tempting) and not as board members of our most precious institution, our schools. I see the Mayor as the City's mediator and since the Mayor does not run against the other School Committee Members and therefore there is much less political resentment or jealousy, thus allowing the Mayor to lead. As Mayor some of Anthony's accomplishments with the School Committee were:

  1. Re-building the vocational education program and hired a permanent director for the director after it was on probation. Now, the voc-ed program has five new programs, new equipment, has over 700 students taking courses, and is fully certified.
  2. Rejected across the board 3% raises for administrators and created merit based evaluation raises for non-administrators. This was the first performance-based evaluation in School Department History.
  3. Added Socio-Economic Status to the School Choice balancing formula. Cambridge is now one of a handful of school systems across the United States taking this historic and widely recommended step.
  4. Maintained and supported small learning communities with random placement at CRLS.

In closing, the schools in general are lacking management principals, specifically evaluation at all levels and strong reaction to consistent evaluation. A strong management structure that includes a common and consistent vision, with a School Committee that acts like a board setting priorities for its CEO (the Superintendent) and a strong political leader (the Mayor) will help the system turn the corner. I do believe standardized testing, while certainly not perfect, should play a role more than they have in the past, and the lack of focus upon basic skills is reflected in our low scores.

Anthony's candidacy has been endorsed by the Cambridge Lavender Alliance, Greater Boston Labor Council, and Greater Boston NOW.

Cambridge Candidates