Letter: Report from Concord

By Mario Ratzki

As part of my function as State Representative, I will endeavor to keep Andover, Danbury, and Salisbury residents apprised of developments at the State House in Concord.

As a newly elected State Representative, I have spent the last month in training sessions and caucus and committee meetings, culminating in the election of Ms. Norelli as Speaker of the House on an overwhelmingly bipartisan basis. State Representatives and Senators were subsequently sworn in by out-going Governor John Lynch.

I have yet to be assigned to a committee, but I did make a legislative request, introducing a bill re: payments owed to us by the State of Massachusetts associated with flood control agreements dating back to the 1950s.

In the bill, I ask the Attorney General to report to the House on progress made in this matter. Massachusetts has not paid for many years, and the amount owed our towns (Salisbury being one of them) now exceeds $4 million.

The deadline for new legislation was December 7. It gave us new Representatives precious little time to introduce legislation. This may be for the best, as we were told to “learn the ropes,” so to speak, so we would not duplicate existing or already introduced legislation nor introduce legislation with unintended consequences we may not be aware of at this early stage.

So I plan to do what I did in the campaign, that is: to listen and to learn. My next opportunity for legislation will be in September 2013. The House will begin its 2013 session on Wednesday, January 2.

I encourage all with particular concerns or issues to get in touch with me at MarioRatzki@nullgmail.com or 735-5440.

Thanks again for honoring me with your confidence and your vote.