[Ed note: I have invited each candidate for a contested seat to submit one letter before the May 9th Town Election.]
To the Editor:
My name is Craig Nicholson and I am thankful for the opportunity to run for the open position on our Planning Board. I have been a resident of Southborough for over 10 years and have a strong commitment to giving back to the community that provides my family with so many benefits.
I believe that Southborough is a place that people choose to live. We choose this town because of everything it has to offer which includes the sense of community, the schools, the recreation opportunities and the open space that helps define the character of the town.
I feel that the best way to preserve what I love about Southborough is to contribute in a way that leverages my career knowledge in real estate to keep all the facets of the town in place and affordable for everyone. It’s my professional background allows me to understand how the words of a zoning by-law and a picture on a site plan will actually fit into our built environment and impact our community.
I have been active in the community for many years. In addition to coaching youth soccer, I am currently the chairperson of the Recreation Commission and Southborough’s Housing Opportunity Partnership Committee (SHOPC). I am also a member of the town’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund. Additionally, I serve on the Advisory Board for the Salvation Army in Worcester County focused on their real estate and retail operations in order to support their mission.
As a member of the Planning Board, I have three key positions that will frame my work:
- I will work to better the communication and coordination of the multiple boards and commissions involved in approving building and development in town. This coordination will ensure that every development is viewed in its entirety and in a manner that is open, consistent and allows each board to support each other’s authority and expertise.
- I will work to create an environment of sustainability within the town. I applaud the recent approval at Town Meeting to adopt the Stretch Code because energy and natural resource conservation is an absolute necessity.
- I will work to implement the findings of the Town’s Housing Production Plan from 2015 in which we need to address the ability for the town to accommodate our aging population in a way that keeps them integrated and involved in our community.
Ultimately, development will happen. My goal is to promote that every project provides a benefit to our community. Benefits that increase the value of our properties and allow for a diverse tax base that supports the schools, recreation and open space components that help to define its character. To accomplish this, I believe I am in a unique position to leverage my expertise and history to strive for winwin outcomes.
The character of Southborough resides in more than our town square, historic buildings and bucolic environment. The character is equally made up of the community and its people. Both facets need to be nurtured in order for Southborough to thrive.
I thank you for your participation in the political process and sincerely ask for your vote.