Sometimes the best ideas don’t have to be complicated or take long to institute. Such is Council Vice President Paul Varone’s plan to hold office hours on the first Tuesday of every month (from 5 to 7 p.m.) in the Council Chambers at Town Hall. Varone will begin his office hours on Tuesday, March 6.
Varone told the Sun Transcript that he wants to give those residents who might otherwise not want to speak in front of the WCAT cameras during the Council meetings an opportunity to meet one-on-one with a member of the Council and discuss the issues.
Paul Varone has been an outstanding councilor and representative for his Precinct 1 constituents. We remember the efficient and cordial manner in which he conducted a well-attended meeting about changes in the bus route for Winthrop last year. He patiently gave everyone an opportunity to speak and what could have been a cantankerous meeting went off smoothly and without discord.
Varone’s idea of office hours is not totally unprecedented in the town (House Speaker Robert DeLeo has held office hours in the town for several years), but this could be the first time that a town councilor or selectman has taken this approach to meeting with residents on an informal basis. (We’ll have to give town historian Dave Hubbard a call on that one).
So to all residents, if you’re a little hesitant about speaking before Council during the public comment portion of the meeting, or if you just want to elaborate on a matter with a member of our town government, Vice President Paul Varone will be at Town Hall on March 6 from 5-7 p.m. to begin the first of his monthly office hours consultations.