Candidate for Councilor at Large, Ward 2
Campaign Website: https://jakefornewton.com
Questions and Answers
Question 1: Discuss an experience where you made a decision that you now regret.
I wish I had written down the stories my grandfather told about his parents. In the last few years, I’ve looked for people who knew them to hear more about their journey from refugees to civic and business leaders.
Question 2: Do you support the proposal to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions in Newton by 2050? Why or why not?
Yes. I’ve been a consistent vote for Green Newton priorities and have led the charge on transportation improvements; transportation accounts for 40% of GHG.
Question 3: What is your opinion of the current development proposals such as the Northland and Riverside projects?
I support a walkable development at Riverside that creates more affordable housing, improves the Charles River watershed, and enhances the tax base. As I did for Northland, I will be the most assertive negotiator on the council in ensuring the developer enacts nation-leading traffic-control measures.
Northland offers senior and affordable housing, tax revenues, and upgrades for infrastructure. Traffic is the key issue. As a councilor, I have led from the front on traffic, negotiating stringent measures that require the developer to reduce car trips.
Question 4: There are a number of expenses that the City needs to grapple with: union contracts still being negotiated, tight school budgets, NewCAL (a new Senior Center), the acquisition of Webster Woods, possible rehabilitation of the Armory, etc. What are your priorities and why?
Public education is the beating heart of Newton and must be priority #1. I was born and educated in Newton and know that our schools are only as good as the teachers we can hire and retain.
Priority #2 is a comprehensive transportation agenda, in concert with residents and state and private-sector stakeholders, that reduces traffic and pollution.