I apologize to the residents of North Smithfield and the readers of NRI NOW for having to endure this ridiculous one man circus that you have been put through this election season. Through it all I have taken the high road and not once dignified Mike Clifford’s attacks with a response on Facebook. In a
letter to the editor Mike Clifford says my “abysmal record speaks for itself.” However, he never actually talks about my record, and just makes more allegations. And I imagine this will continue until election day. But it is exactly my record I am most proud of and will gladly run on.
In just the last two years I have overseen the construction of the bathrooms and concession stand at the school, which I managed to get built with no out of pocket expense to the town. I helped negotiate a
deal with the fire department to get another rescue on the road. I proudly supported the veterans tax credit. With the help of Linda Thibault, I worked with seniors to help them get more funding for activities.
I created the first ever art committee in town. This council managed to keep taxes down after the pandemic. I worked to get the city of Woonsocket to agree to sell us water for Route 146. This will encourage more business investment in the area once the new construction is compete. And as always I supported our students and worked closely with the School Committee.
During the last budget hearing, after several hours of discussion, members of the council were ready to approve it. A motion for approval was even made. I stopped them and insisted we c(ould) do better. So we went back to the beginning and managed to shave over $100,000 from the budget that (had been) seconds away from approval.
There are seven other candidates running for Town Council this year, and any one of them can make budget cuts, promise transparency, promise to keep taxes down, and be fiscally responsible. These are all important things, which I have always done. But what I promise is something no other candidate is
talking about – and what Mike Clifford mocks me for – and that is trying to create a better sense of community. He says I am acting like a, “director at a summer camp,” because I want to bring the town together. I think that comment says a lot more about him than it does about me.
I am the originator and still organize the annual fireworks. I was one of the people who came up with the idea of having North Smithfield Days, kids day in the park and dinner under the stars. We are in the process of organizing a massive barn fire this winter with hopes of making it an annual event. I gave out more citations over the past two years recognizing residents for their hard work and achievements than any council president ever has. This is good stuff. When members of the Special Olympics basketball team did the countdown to the fireworks this year, that was a special moment I will never forget. Mr. Clifford ridicules me because I support these community events, but I see the importance of bringing people together. I encourage him to attend one of these events and see the joy it brings to people. Events like these instill a sense of community among our residents. Maybe if he attended just one event, he would not look at everything through such a negative lens and begin to see the good in people and not spend so much time looking for the bad.
I will always fight to keep your taxes low, I have always been fiscally responsible and support the proper maintenance of the town’s infrastructure. I support our seniors and our students. But if you want someone that believes there is more to the job and values the little things in life as well, then I am your guy.
John A. Beauregard
President North Smithfield Town Council