The Blueprint for Newton's Future

If you would like to request a copy of the published Blueprint, please click the image and fill out the contact form.The Blueprint's front coverOver the past year Alderman Parker and his supporters engaged Newton residents in a discussion about the City’s future. Through that process over 100 community members actively helped research and write a plan for the City called A Blueprint for Newton’s Future. In short, that plan outlines a vision to...

Make our schools the best in America through small class sizes, great core math, science, language and arts curricula, a strong vocational program, a more effective school day and updated classrooms;

Keep our city clean and safe by reducing noise, pollution and traffic, increasing recycling, protecting our trees and parks, promoting smart growth and access to public transportation and important services you need like grocery stores and playgrounds;

Be sure your tax dollars are used carefully by reinventing Newton government so that it is efficient and responsive, and seeking out and implementing alternative revenue sources keep your taxes low.

To learn the "what and how" of Ken Parker's vision to address Newton's financial challenges, prioritize public education and promote our environment and sustainable growth please read the information below and let us know if you have any questions or ideas. 

I) Addressing Newton's Financial Challenges

Without addressing Newton’s financial crisis, it would be difficult to pursue the improved services described in the other sections of this plan.

The Finance and Management section of this plan maps out ideas for increasing revenue and to controlling costs in the short term, as well as strategies for solving our structural deficit and restoring the long-term financial health of our city. Our goal is simple: in four years, Newton should be recognized as the best run city in America. To get there will require leadership, vision, a deep understanding of the issues, and executive management that employs best practices and demands excellence in execution.

Our work was based on the following three shared values. Newton residents want our government to:

A) Spend public dollars efficiently and effectively to reduce costs, eliminate redundancies, and maximize value;

B) Pursue revenue enhancement opportunities that do not impose regressive fees, new taxes or otherwise negatively impact our community; and

C) Reform management practices to incorporate the above principles into every aspect of our city government, building a financially-sustainable future

II) Prioritizing Public Education

The Parker Education Subcommittee examined the challenges facing the Newton Public Schools. Our schools benefit from smart, talented teachers and have a record of success at providing quality education to thousands of Newton students, but in a globally competitive environment, we cannot rest on our laurels. We need to build on the strengths of our school system and shore up our weaknesses. Our schools should be among best in the country.

To achieve this goal, we need to question every aspect of public education and to create an environment of continuous improvement, allowing us to find better and more cost-effective ways of providing world-class public education.

Our work was based on three shared values. Newton residents want our schools to:

A) Offer all of our students excellent academic instruction;

B) Provide students with an environment that is conducive to learning; and

C) Improve school management and planning practices to improve and decision-making, communication, operational efficiency, and overall effectiveness.

III) Promoting the Environment and Sustainable Growth

The Environment and Sustainable Growth Subcommittee has worked to develop a program that addresses issues such as environmental stewardship, quality of life, and planning for Newton’s future. Our goals are based on promoting the following four key shared values. Newton residents want our government to:

A)  Reduce or mitigate negative environmental impacts associated with government operations, like pollution and wasted energy;

B)  Increase the availability and quality of public services like libraries and trash collection, as well as private-sector services like grocery stores, movie theatres, and cell phone reception;

C)  Enhance the quality of life in our city, by working to reduce traffic congestion, improve pedestrian and bicycle amenities, keep our parks clean, maintain City buildings and streets, and protect public safety; and

D)  Adopt and adhere to smart growth principles that generate new tax revenue and enhance our village centers, while reducing environmental impacts, providing services, and improving the quality of life.


For full PDF versions of the Blueprint, or for one-page summaries, please click the links below: