Campaign Kick Off
Below is the speech from the June 27 Campaign Kickoff and Downtown Revitalization Plan
Good evening. Thank you all for gathering here tonight. By simply being here, each and every one of you are showing support to our community. I am excited to share with you the foundation of our campaign and how TOGETHER we can make a better Attleboro for ALL of us.
But first I need to say Thank you to some incredible people.
To my team. Geoff, Vicki, Dave and of course Eddie, all of you keep me focused, dedicated and most importantly: humble. Our years of collaboration have proven to our community that we can make great things happen. There are no words that can encompass the gratitude I have for each of you in my life.
Thank you to my children: Hadley, Eddie, Maggie. I couldn’t be prouder of each of you. It’s not easy being a Porreca kid. Your unwavering support, encouragement and love is something I never take for granted. Each of you, as you go about your daily lives, demonstrate to me how to be a better person. You practice the family motto: “Nice Matters”. The fact of the matter is you share your mom with the city of Attleboro, and that has it’s challenges. Each of you sacrifice so much for me to do what I love. You set the example, which drives me every day to make this community better for you, and better for your future. Thank you, guys… I love you.
To my mom and dad and brothers and sisters. This year started off pretty rough for our Family. Together we have been through a lot. Thank you for being here, supporting and believing in me. Ma, I know this is a strange and unique direction for one of your children go to in. Growing up you and dad set an unshakable foundation. You both instilled a code inside your 5 kids. A code of what’s right, and what’s wrong. You showed us how to be successful: Especially in the face of adversity. You demonstrated How important is to take care of others and how to live a life of service. Every day I share the things you have taught me with my own family, and the City of Attleboro. I don’t always get it right, but I sure do try. Thank you for raising me strong.
Thank you to my in-laws Ed and Kathleen for being here tonight. Your favorite daughter in law greatly appreciates it. (side… well… your only daughter in law)
How about a round of applause for Alyson and Ulricka for their help tonight! Thank you for giving of your time and talents for the campaign tonight.
Now, on to why we are here tonight.
Leadership is not about a position of power. Being a leader means that you have been put in a place to SERVE OTHERS. Leadership is about how people are treated, how we make decisions and the examples that we set. It is about appreciating and inspiring others.
Leadership is not a RIGHT given to you by the results of an election. It is a privilege.
I want to lead Attleboro, its residents, and its employees into our next phase of success.
I want to be the next Mayor of the City of Attleboro.
For decades promises for downtown revitalization have been made over and over again. Commissions have been formed, plans crafted for bits and pieces, and nice things done here and there. We have not had a large enough view for an all inclusive, continual plan and vision for what we can do with our downtown.
If we truly want revitalization to happen here, we have to be willing to do anything and everything to get it done. We have to be motivated and driven to do deep dives into data and history. We have to learn from the successes, and more importantly, from the missed opportunities of other communities. We have to find, recruit and inspire the people that can help create economic success for Attleboro.
I have researched several communities that are in different stages of major downtown revivals. In Framingham, a city slightly larger than Attleboro, is poised to begin nearly 2 billion dollars of revitalization.
The City of Quincy with a population of 100,000 is in the midst of a 4 billion dollar city renaissance.
Attleboro has a population of roughly 43K residents. Based on the numbers for those similar communities: I can’t help but ask:
Tonight, I have laid out plans showing how WE CAN.
1 Billion Dollars in revitalization is real, it’s attainable, it is within our grasp. I have created the relationships needed to get it done. A Porreca Administration is ready NOW.
What does 1 Billion dollars in revitalization mean for Attleboro?
- $47 million in tax revenue…
- $4 million in building permit revenue…
- Add in excise tax, meals tax and personal property tax, we will have the ability to increase our tax revenue without having to burden the homeowners that have been toeing the line for so long already.
- 1800 housing units, focusing on our need for affordable housing
- 240,000 sq. ft in retail space
- 900,000 sq. ft in commercial space,
- 2400 additional parking spaces,
- Recreation and open green space.
Adding thousands of jobs to our area such as
- Food Service
- Light Manufacturing
- Service Industry
With a broad, long term sweeping plan we will create the basis for the citizens of Attleboro to truly enjoy and love where we live, work and play. We will create the reasons for Attleboro to be THE destination, not just the city you drive through to get to LaSalette.
Do you want to know what else comes along with this plan?
Think about what impact $47 million dollars in new tax revenue can do for our city.
The vision for our must go beyond simply making the downtown pretty. It must be about making an economically viable and sustainable community. The City has a responsibility to provide for the Capitol needs required for each and every city department to be successful and effective in servicing our residents and community.
Police, Fire, Schools are routinely level funded and rely on free cash to make their budgets work. Many of our municipal buildings are falling apart and are in desperate need of maintenance and repairs. We stretch chapter 90 state funds to fix our roads, but it’s not even close to the amount needed to maintain the conditions we have now. Our water and wastewater facilities are in desperate need of upgrading and the city-wide infrastructure is crumbling.
We have financial responsibility to our current and future retirees guaranteeing that what has been promised to them is there.
We are forever scrambling to figure out ways to save city owned property such as the library and the Richardson school. We can only bond and borrow so much before it is detrimental to the City’s fiscal health.
We must break the cycle of living by the skin of our teeth EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR.
No one is going to help us, we need to champion this ourselves.
What is equally important is the need to focus on the economic health for our residents. What this plan does is provide job opportunities similar to when Attleboro was in its heyday of being a manufacturing city.
An aggressive and effective plan will help give us “something to sell” so we can successfully identify, target and usher in the “next big industry” This will put an end to the 6 consecutive years of stagnant growth, and will ease the ever increasing tax burden to the residents
I need to pause for a moment and reassure all of you that my administration will be mindful of the existing business that operate successfully in our community. We will ensure that they are supported and cared for during the years of development to come. We accomplish that by partnering with developers who, along with the City, are sensitive to their needs. Jointly we will aid and support them in every way possible.
We can’t be pigheaded about this we have to be open and flexible to every possibility. We must partner and work together and share information and resources. What we have done tonight is lay out the potential of what Attleboro can truly be so collectively we are all motivated and every single one of us pulls in the same direction.
How do we make this all happen?
My team and I have been working on this comprehensive vision for months now, and we are thrilled to share it with you tonight. It’s a plan you can believe in.
Much time has been spent consulting and meeting with developers and contractors that WANT to come to Attleboro, specifically seeking those that have the ability not only to build but to FINANCE what is on display here. In addition, business owners and financial experts have validated my calculations of the positive financial impact that true economic revitalization will have on our city.
We will continue to nurture and build those relationships. We will make this vision a reality. There is no time to wait on this. Attleboro is already decades behind. This work is happening now.
My strength lies in my ability to listen, learn, problem solve. True leadership requires strong dedication to collaboration and the willingness and ability to work through adversity. That is the expectation I have set for myself, for this administration and every single resident and stakeholder here in Attleboro. With dedication and focus we can all take credit for the revitalization and the success of our City. No one accomplishes anything alone.
Desire, Vision, Cooperation, Collaboration and Relationships are the key components for Attleboro to reach our greatest potential. It is the responsibility of solid Leadership to be thoughtful and considerate to the ideas of others, maintain an unstoppable work ethic and possess the ability to elevate and inspire us all to be better. I want that responsibility.
I want to be your Mayor.
With that I ask if you will join with me as we aspire to the next great chapter in the history of the city of Attleboro. I ask for your support and your vote on November 5.