So early voting has begun and in addition to voting for President of the United States, you will be voting on 5 Questions and Register of Deeds. What is the Register of Deeds? Well, they are the person in charge of the Registry – where all land transactions are recorded. Not super-sexy we know but regardless, you’ll be voting for that position. We recently sat down with Stephen Murphy who is running as the democratic candidate and had a little Q&A!
How long have been involved in local politics?
My parents instilled the importance of being politically involved at a young age and I held my first political sign when I was 12. I was actively involved through my time at Boston Latin and Stonehill College. I have served on the Ward 18 Democratic Committee for almost 40 years. My first job in state government was working in constituent services for South Boston’s own, Senate President William Bulger. I then went on and served on the Boston City Council for nearly 20 years.
Why do you think you’d make a good Register of Deeds?
The Register of Deeds is the manager of a public agency. As one of your City Councilors for nearly twenty years, I served three terms as President of the Boston City Council where I managed a budget of $5.8 million with 88 employees where I returned surplus funds at the end of each fiscal year end. I also have prior experience as a General Operations Manager in a private sector transportation company where I oversaw over day-to-day operations and 400 employees.
Constituent service is the cornerstone of public service and the most important part of the job.
I have always focused my attention on the needs of those who take the time to call or visit. I lead by example to ensure that each interaction is answered professionally with kindness, a positive interaction, and helpful information. When someone takes the time to reach out to find out information or needs help with an issue, that question or issue is of the most importance to that person, and I ensure that they should be treated as such in helping navigate through government processes, which at times, can be daunting.
Do you believe the position of Register of Deeds should be appointed and not elected like your opponent John Keith?
I couldn’t more strongly disagree. A public office that expends public funds should have the vote of the people that office serves. I use the example of the Boston School Committee. When the Boston School Committee was changed from elected to appointed, the Boston City Council became the defacto school committee because by being elected, you are accountable and accessible to the voters.
The Registry of Deeds is one of the oldest elected positions in our history. It should remain as such so that you, the voter, makes the decision of who not only oversees the security of the deed to your home, but also who manages the public funds of the office.
What are three things you hope to accomplish if you get elected.
1) Improve the website by working with the Secretary of the Commonwealth’s office to make it more user and mobile friendly.
2) Bring the office out into the neighborhoods of Suffolk County to provide education about the services of the Registry of Deeds and how to protect what is most likely their most precious financial asset, their home.
3) Continue the great work of former Register Mickey Roache to ensure constituent service is the number one priority for all who work in the Registry, and work with other government agencies to provide more information to protect homeowners from potential scams.
Why should people vote for you?
I am the only candidate who has public management and finance experience, a strong record of constituent services, and the only candidate who has actually worked in the Suffolk Registry of Deeds. With early voting in full swing and Election Day quickly approaching, I ask you for your vote for Register of Deeds- Suffolk District.
Which neighborhood do you live in?
I was born in Dorchester, lived on Fuller Street, went to St. Gregory’s, and then moved to Hyde Park when I was 8 and have been there ever since! I live on Fairmount Hill in Hyde Park with my wife Bridget.
Favorite spot in Southie?
Honestly, I love the BAC- Boston Athletic Club. I have been a member there since the early 1980’s. It’s not only a great gym, but the people there are what make it such a great place. You not only get a great workout, but you can also catch up on what is happening in Southie.
To learn more about Stephen Murphy you can visit his website. Make sure to follow him on Twitter too!
The register, as it exists today, is a pure patronage position, take a look at John Keith, running to basically consolidate, modernize, and downsize the ridiculous position.
No thank you! Not after what I witnessed while waiting to vote yesterday in the South End!
John Keith’s actions were atrocious. A Murphy supporter showed up and tried to put a sign near where Keith put his sign. Keith started screaming at the Murphy supporter and then called Boston Elections out. When Boston Elections confirmed Murphy’s supporter could put a sign up as well, Keith yelled expletives at the Murphy supporter. In talking with voters in line, any vote Keith had, Keith lost and those votes went to Murphy.