SenCtrForum.S14.1089

Dan Carpenter

Dan Carpenter is a candidate for the Board of Selectmen.  Dan is a lifelong Auburn resident and a 1991 graduate of Auburn High.  He earned a Bachelors Degree in history from Worcester State University.  Dan currently works as an auditor for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation.

AMD: What do you feel qualifies you to be an Auburn Selectman?

Carpenter: I’ve lived in Auburn all my life and I care about our residents and what happens in our community.  I have served on multiple town boards, including the Planning Board, Conservation Commission and the Economic Development Committee.  I am also a town meeting member and on the Board of Registrars.  I have a broad knowledge of our town government, how it functions and recognize the importance of working together for the betterment of the town.

AMD: What would you improve in local government?

Carpenter: I believe we need to reach out to our volunteers, support them in their work and treat them with courtesy and respect.  Our town cannot function without them.  Also, while I agree that there have been many positive changes in our town government since the implementation of our new Charter, I am deeply concerned about a lack of balance in our government structure.  I feel it would be better for some board positions to be returned to the ballot.  Let some of those decisions be made by the voters.

AMD: What do you feel are the top two issues facing the Board of Selectmen?

Carpenter:  During the past four to five years, the Board of Selectmen has been working toward a single tax rate.  However, in recent years, the compression rate of the shift between residential and commercial has been significant.  I welcome and support businesses in our community.  However, I want to keep our residents in mind as we struggle with the same slow economy.  That’s why I support keeping the factor where it is for the next two years.  My other concern here is that the Board has evolved into a policy setting committee as a result of the current Town Charter.  I think the Board needs to more clearly identify its role and consider advocating for some charter amendments to facilitate needed change.

AMD: What will you personally bring to the Board?

Carpenter: Personally, I bring my youth and my passion for service to the table. If I have the honor of being elected by the people of Auburn, I want to do whatever I can to reach out and understand the issues that matter to residents and business owners in our community.  I will work hard with my fellow board members to find a way to balance the needs and expectations of both our business and residential communities.

AMD: Do you have any suggestions to keep Auburn on its strong financial track?

Carpenter: The town has made good progress on restoring reserves and the stabilization funds to much stronger levels, and the recent bond rating increase is a direct reflection of sound management.  I think that the town needs to do everything it can to continue to deliver necessary services, while keeping a close eye on spending, department expansion and minimizing the need for overrides or debt exclusions.