Dyke Hendrickson is wrong today in his editorial.
Sure, in many years, the Central Waterfront issue and the positions taken by candidates often defined the mayoral race.
But in this case, Dyke’s indication of long coattails for each person (so far running) puts his title statement to naught. Lord Sith is a hardened dark sider and is very much for development on the waterfront. He may try to be coy about it to fool the low-information voter; but it will be in vain. The best he can do is talk about degrees of development and to try to draw away those foolish enough to have felt betrayed willing to sacrifice principle over emotions.
Both will try to slug it out and weary the citizens until another hardened dark sider with vastly more experience throws his hat into the ring late in the game. A new, old player who has a penchant for beautiful parking lots.
No, the local historic district issue is still in the play – this will be truly the litmus and the city council, city hall and the Daily News will do their best to ignore this fact but it will be in vain. The anti-historic preservationists know it and are already grooming their Seabrook-loving candidates to make a run. Though many preservationists may try to crawl back into the cave of irrelevance; we must not let them if ever we are to see a bright future for our city.
We need candidates who know that historic preservation is the central key to Newburyport’s economic and regional leadership. As John F. Kennedy paraphrased from an old New England saying, “The rising tide lifts all…boats”; historic preservation in the Newburyport Historic District ensures that property values and a high quality of life is spread out and enjoyed by the twelve other non-historic neighborhoods.
Those with a city-destroying view of a Boston-bedroom commuters community, of haphazard freewheeling construction and of supporting old-economy industrialists need to be exposed and pushed out of the running.