My name is Bill Whitney, and I am seeking election to the Wayland Select Board.
My wife, Jean, our three children and I moved to Wayland thirty years ago for its excellent schools, its beautiful, wooded neighborhoods and its vibrant community. Having previously been elected to the Select Board and the Planning Board and having been appointed to other Town committees, I hope to once again serve the Town of which we all are so proud.
During my prior tenure on the Select Board, it was a time of accomplishment, of resolution of issues, and of implementation of changes in our town government to improve service delivery and cost effectiveness. The Board’s achievements included: managing the transition from an Executive Secretary to a Town Administrator having greater responsibility and accountability (comparable to Wayland’s recent transition from a Town Administrator to a Town Manager); leading the successful effort to consolidate the functions of three town boards into a Department of Public Works; and implementing a series of actions to reduce the rate of tax increases, thereby reversing a trend of reliance of operating overrides to fund Wayland’s public schools and other essential services.
With a background in planning and real estate, I was asked to lead the Select Board’s settlement negotiations with the Town of Framingham and the developer of what was then known as Danforth Woods. Working with other Town boards and residents, we achieved substantial reductions in that project’s density and traffic impacts while securing funding for needed roadway, sidewalk and safety improvements.
In addition, our board led the effort to secure approval of zoning and other approvals for converting the vacant former Raytheon property to the mixed use development we know as Wayland Town Center. The project has helped increase Wayland’s modest commercial tax base, created new job and small business opportunities and resulted in the donation of land for a future town green and a building that will house Wayland’s new Council on Aging/Community Center.
If elected, I would support the School Committee and the Personnel Board in filling important vacancies in the school system’s administration. I would continue to advocate for the maintenance and enhancement of our open spaces and playing fields. I would again work with the Planning Board and the Economic Development Committee to support local businesses and expand the commercial tax base on initiatives such as the Route 20 corridor study and follow-on implementation steps. I also would work to maintain and improve essential public services in a cost-effective manner.
Wayland is a highly functioning, safe, and caring community that is well served by its school system and its other public services. Members of the Select Board must work collaboratively with one another and with other Town boards, committees and residents to maintain and enhance these services and to provide stability and accountability in Town government. I hope to help contribute to these efforts, and ask for your vote on April 25. Thank you.
To learn more, please visit www.billforwayland.com.