Name: Mark Love
Position: Paxton Select Board
My name is Mark Love, and I am running for election to the Select Board in the town of Paxton. I have an extensive background in business and financial management, considerable municipal experience, and a long history of community service.
That experience includes being a member of the Paxton Finance Committee, the Paxton Capital Improvements Planning Committee, and the Paxton Financial Management Policies Ad Hoc Committee. I also am a past member of the board of directors of the Association of Town Finance Committees.
I have a master’s degree in business administration (MBA); am a licensed and practicing CPA; am an associate professor of Accounting, Auditing, and Taxes at Worcester State University; am department chair of WSU’s Department of Business Administration and Economics; am a small business owner; and have served as a member of the board of directors and treasurer of many community service and economic development organizations.
Paxton is a beautiful, rural small town, and in certain ways is also like a small business with unique financial challenges. In a wonderful community profile just recently created by the town administrator search committee, input was gathered from a variety of town sources, including the community at large, town officials and town employees. That survey found that the number one challenge facing the town of Paxton was Finances and Financial Management. I agree. From my own perspective, some of those financial issues most critical and in need of thoughtful attention and open discussion are:
High taxes; low financial reserves; significant capital equipment needs with high costs; and a solution to the aging DPW building that is inadequate and poses challenges to maintaining town services. Certain departments and budgets are underfunded, under-equipped and understaffed, and others need to be looked at for possible consolidation. We need to strike a balance between the quality of and the cost of education for our students K-12.
In addition, state mandates for stormwater management are here and they are costly; $1.4 million of “once in a town’s lifetime” ARPA funds are already fully expended or earmarked; new growth and development — which should be controlled and managed — are needed; the town needs to be seen as more business-friendly; and we need to seek new areas of revenue growth, funding sources and grant opportunities.
Of course, however critical these financial matters are, town matters are not just about dollars and cents, and budgets and finances. They are also about public safety, public service, public works, public buildings, our schools, our neighborhoods, recreation, serving our seniors, and providing opportunities for our youth.
I am well aware, well-versed, and well-experienced in all of these. As such, I am ready to serve and committed to serving the town of Paxton and all of its residents with fresh ideas, new perspectives and thoughts for change.
Please vote for me, Mark Love, for Paxton Select Board on Monday, May 9, 2022.