Peter Spellios Thanks Staff Ahead of Swampscott Select Board Departure

April 4, 2024 0 By JohnValbyNation

SWAMPSCOTT, MA — Swampscott Select Board member Peter Spellios, who is not on the April 30 town ballot for re-election, took some time to share his appreciation of town staff Wednesday night at the conclusion of one of his final meetings on the Board.

Spellios shared his thoughts on the night a public library proposal was unveiled as the possible future for the oceanfront Hawthorne Restaurant property that Spellios helped champion as a $7 million municipal purchase two years ago.

(Also on Patch: Waterfront Library Proposed For Swampscott Hawthorne Property)

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The town sample ballot for the April 30 election lists Danielle Leonard and Katherine Harrington as the two candidates vying for the open seat that has belonged to Spellios for nearly a decade.

“I want to take a moment in one of my remaining few Select Board minutes to talk indirectly to staff,” he said. “Tonight is a great reminder to me of the role that you play. Yes, there may be a point in time that we’re sitting up here, and we’re elected and we’re policymakers, but you guys are the idea mills.

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“It is hard to put forward ideas. If you don’t put forward anything people tend to swat away nothing. But when you put forward things there will always be people who are going to want to swat it away, or want to do something differently, or don’t like this, or don’t like that. But good towns need you to keep showing up, and doing this, and planting seeds.”

He said during his time on the Board there have been meetings he’s left with regret because he felt there was more he could have done to facilitate or advocate for a project, or said something that may have made a staff member “not feel appreciated,” but that he always respected all the work done to formulate plans and initiatives for the betterment of the town.

“Most of the things I have advocated for are not my ideas,” he said. “They are your ideas that you folks have brought forward and have allowed me to advocate for, and my colleagues as well.

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“I’m here. I was here. I am here a little bit longer to support what you do. So thank you for the audacious idea tonight that we could actually have a world-class library.”

(Scott Souza is a Patch field editor covering Beverly, Danvers, Marblehead, Peabody, Salem and Swampscott. He can be reached at X/Twitter: @Scott_Souza.)

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