New website accepting ideas – deadline is June 30th
The Following is a press release from the office of City Council President Bill Linehan:
The Ray Flynn Commission held a public hearing on Wednesday, May 27. The hearing invited members of the public to come and give input on the legacy of Ray Flynn, and solicited feedback on ways to honor his legacy. Over 100 people filled the Council chamber for the hearing which featured testimony from 19 witnesses including Ted Landsmark, BRA board member, Sam Tyler, President of the Boston Municipal Research Bureau, Neil Sullivan, President of the Boston Private Industry Council, former Boston Police Commissioner Mickey Roache, Registrar of Deeds, Representative Nick Collins, Felix Arroyo, Registrar of Probate, City Council President Bill Linehan, City Councilor Sal LaMattina, and many others.
The hearing lasted for over 3 hours, with many members of the public offering testimony on Ray Flynn’s tenure as Mayor, State Representative, City Councilor, and Ambassador. Several major themes emerged from the testimony, including Flynn’s tireless efforts for social justice, stopping racial violence, desegregating public housing, linking downtown development with neighborhood benefits, establishing the appointed School Committee, cleaning up Boston Harbor, initiating the central artery project, building affordable housing, creating the first Homeless Commission and annual census of the homeless, reversing chronic budget deficits and creating lasting stability of the City’s finances, embracing Latino and Asian linguistic minority communities, efforts to improve diversity in city employment including hiring people of color and women as top administration officials, and much more. People remembered him as a bridge-builder, reaching out to everyone in the city to move Boston forward. Many remembered his incredible work ethic and hands-on style of government. Others remembered him as a great athlete who still coaches kids with special needs.
Those who testified had more than a dozen ideas on how best to honor the legacy of Ray Flynn, such as renaming the Marine Industrial Park, the Convention Center, putting commemorative plaques along the Harborwalk, renaming a public building or street for Flynn, and putting up a statue to Flynn. Several people stressed that the ideas are not mutually exclusive, and if the Commission recommends renaming a building or district, it should not shy away from recommending putting up a statue to Flynn as well. Commission Chair Frank Doyle assured those present that all input will be given sincere, thorough and thoughtful consideration. “Each and every suggestion, grand and simpler, deserves our full attention because we understand it has great meaning to the person proposing it”, Doyle said.
The Commission hopes to make recommendations to the City Council and Mayor Walsh by June 30 and continues to accept new ideas from the public at www.RayFlynn.org or through Council President Bill Linehan’s office.