Sen. Lesser Holds Roundtable with Local Elected Leaders

LONGMEADOW — Senator Eric P. Lesser held a roundtable meeting with local municipal leaders representing the towns of Belchertown, East Longmeadow, Granby, Longmeadow, Ludlow and Wilbraham to discuss furthering the partnership between municipalities and the Commonwealth.

“I look forward to continuing to strengthen the partnership between the local elected officials in the communities I represent and the Commonwealth,” Senator Lesser said. “This meeting provided the opportunity to learn how my office can better support communities across my district. These important conversations also allow local leaders to hear about the similar challenges they each face, and provide the chance to brainstorm solutions together.”

The discussion covered several topics including how cities and towns can use cultural programming to provide safe, family friendly spaces in an effort to curb substance abuse, the level of funding provided to communities as reimbursements for school building projects, and the challenges that Western Massachusetts communities face with regard to the Proposition 2 ½ levy limit – which several local communities are rapidly approaching.

“It is always great to meet with other selectmen and town councilors in our region to learn about our shared challenges and be heard and supported by our state senator. Senator Lesser works diligently to support Western Massachusetts,” said Wilbraham Selectman Susan Bunnell.

From left to right: Belchertown Select Board Member Gail Gramarossa, Wilbraham Selectman Susan Bunnell, Belchertown Select Board member Nicholas O’Connor.

“As a Selectman, having the opportunity to meet with my peers from neighboring communities in an open forum was a great way to talk about issues that affect all our constituents,” said Ludlow Selectmen Derek DeBarge. “I commend Senator Lesser for planning the round table talk and look forward to more. It’s a way for all of us to help one another and become a stronger Western Mass.”

“I believe meetings like this are a benefit to everyone who attended. They are a chance to share your community’s issues with other municipalities and see if they have similar problems,” said Granby Selectmen Jay Joyce. “Senator Lesser is able to learn whether our problems are isolated or systemic, helping him better understand our challenges. This meeting also allowed us to network with each other, ultimately leading to a stronger ‘community,’ for Senator Lesser and all of us to represent.”

Senator Lesser regularly meets with the Boards of Selectmen and Town and City Councils in the communities he represents. This roundtable meeting marks the second time that Senator Lesser has brought together local-elected leaders from across the First Hampden and Hampshire district.

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