“Understanding the true meaning of accountability makes us strong and enables us to learn.” – Sameh Elsayed
Mike's Plan to Increase Accountability

Housing in Wilbraham

Mike plans to work with the Selectboard, along with other town departments and public bodies, to create a certified Housing Production Plan (HPP) for Wilbraham. This step is crucial to maintain local control over zoning by-laws related to housing and prevent state intervention permitted under MGL Chapter 40B. The residents of Wilbraham possess an unmatched understanding of the town's opportunities and limitations, making them the ideal partners in creating a responsive and adaptable housing plan. Moreover, an effective HPP would enhance business districts in Wilbraham by lowering the expenses related to traveling for work.

Update Master Plan

As a member of the Selectboard, Mike aims to collaborate with the Planning Department, Planning Board, and other town officials to create an updated Master Plan that caters to the present and future requirements of Wilbraham's residents while considering changes in demographics and regulations.

The last comprehensive Master Plan for Wilbraham dates back to 1963, and since then, only narrowly-focused land use plans have been implemented. The earlier plan predicted that the town's population would reach between 18,000-25,000 residents by the mid-1980s, but today, the population is under 15,000. Wilbraham's population is aging, and with a primarily residential tax base, the burden of taxes falls increasingly on fixed-income homeowners. Additionally, escalating home values make it difficult for first-time homebuyers and younger families to afford housing in Wilbraham. Revising the Master Plan based on current data would provide a more accurate assessment of the town's planning needs, risks, and strengths. It would also hold elected and appointed officials accountable to relevant and up-to-date data points.

Separate Boards

Mike advocates for separating the Board of Health from the Selectboard. Public health involves safeguarding and enhancing health through preventive medicine, health education, disease control, implementation of sanitary measures, and monitoring environmental hazards. None of these responsibilities requires political expertise, making them highly specialized fields.

In his opinion, the Selectboard serving as the Board of Health operates outside their professional capacity, and it would be more effective to delegate the responsibilities of the Board of Health to qualified individuals.

Take part in the building of a stronger Wilbraham


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