ACTION ALERT: Help Cambridge hire a progressive, pro-housing city manager

(Sent Sunday, February 13th, 2022.)

In Cambridge’s Plan E system of government, the City Manager is the most powerful office. They are hired by the City Council and, with their direction, run the entire executive branch of government; including proposing the budget, nominees to boards and commissions, and other key decisions that guide our City. Cambridge is hiring a new City Manager this spring, and the results of the hiring process will have a profound impact on the direction of the City for many years.

A Better Cambridge has released a letter detailing what we want to see from the hiring process and the next city manager, including:

  • An understanding that renters matter - and that renters’ voices and needs require special attention to avoid being under-represented and under-served.
  • An excitement about the opportunities of a growing and changing Cambridge - with more housing, better transportation, and greater investment in our community.
  • A desire to use the power of Cambridge’s government to improve lives and promote racial and economic justice - we must do better at living up to our progressive, innovative reputation.

  • A collaborative, transparent, and experienced leadership style - we need a City Manager who respects guidance from the City Council, but who is also not afraid to own their decisions and face criticism.

We need your help to make sure this message is clear. Here’s what you can do:

  1. Add your name to our letter by signing here

  2. Take the official survey on the City Manager Search website - responses go into a public discussion forum, so if you have time, you can also go through and upvote responses that you agree with.

  3. Write an email to the City Council and the search consultant, Randi Frank. Address emails to [email protected], [email protected], and [email protected]. Feel free to include the parts of ABC’s letter that you’re most excited about (just copy and paste!) to help get our shared message across. Please submit your comments in advance of the February 16th Town Hall Meeting (details below).

  4. Attend a Town Hall Meeting on Wednesday, February 16th, 6:00-8:00pm. You can sign up to give public comment to the City Council’s Government Operations committee here. (The link doesn’t appear to be live right now - but check back later, and make sure to submit your comments over email as well.)

For more information on the search process and timeline, see the official Cambridge City Manager Search website. Phase I of the Search (“Community Engagement”) ends on February 27th - now is the time to get your voice heard!