During this election year, we will provide candidates the opportunity to explain their views on any issue facing Melrosians.
By JEN GRIGORAITIS
One of the features of our city that truly makes Melrose special is our vibrant business community. We are fortunate that the businesses that call Melrose home provide such a wide array of quality goods and services. There is a unique character to the business districts in Melrose that rightfully brings us pride. As Mayor, I will not take the continued success of those businesses for granted and am committed to fostering an even more supportive environment.
I am proud that I have a demonstrated track record of being a champion for small businesses in Melrose. As the City Councilor for Ward 6, I represent a significant portion of Melrose’s commercial sector, including the downtown portion of Main Street. I serve as a member of the Melrose Chamber of Commerce as well, where I am able to stay in touch with the concerns of our business owners. Thanks to a strong understanding of the issues confronting our businesses, I wasted no time in working with the business community to provide assistance and support during the COVID-19 pandemic. I filed a number of orders that alleviated the unprecedented financial strains faced by our restaurants and retailers. This was important to me because these businesses are an important part of the identity of our City and I believe it is the role of our local government to preserve that.
As mayor, I look forward to attracting an even more diverse range of industries while keeping our business corridors robust and thriving. Melrose must continue to be seen as a regional destination for arts, culture, dining, and more. I am eager for Melrose to adopt the best practices of our neighboring communities, such as regular meetings of city department heads with leadership of the Chamber of Commerce and local business leaders, and reviewing and updating our regulations, practices, and procedures to reflect the current realities and needs of our residents and businesses. I have new ideas for bringing more energy to our commercial sector, like creating a City of Melrose toolkit to help new business owners more easily navigate their interactions with City Hall and convening an advisory group to explore commercial development opportunities that may have been overlooked in the past. The energy of our businesses must be matched by the energy our city government brings to supporting their success.
Melrose has a strong foundation of thriving small businesses but we must not lose focus on continued economic growth. Our efforts are critical to maintain healthy municipal finances and also to preserve the unique character of our community. Indeed, all of Melrose wins when the Melrose business community is strong and growing.