Over the last few months, we have watched the primary campaign take shape in House District 57 between longtime Rep. James McLaughlin and newcomer Brandon Voas. It is clear that Brandon Voas is the right choice in this upcoming primary election. While many on the Town Council, including myself and Councilors Lisa Beaulieu, Bob Shaw and Stephanie Gemski, have attempted to work with Rep. McLaughlin over the years, we unfortunately must share with you that our efforts have yielded no outcomes. That is why we have endorsed Voas along with Sen. Ryan Pearson and Central Falls Mayor Maria Rivera.
Likely well intentioned, McLaughlin has in 12 years not figured out how to deliver results for Cumberland and Central Falls. Yes, he seeks to take credit for every layer of pavement laid down in Cumberland, but the fact is that pavement is part of a 10-year plan the Department of Transportation works out with House and Senate finance committees each year based on budgeted amounts available and road conditions. McLaughlin did sit on the Finance Committee once, but was removed by House leaders given his ineffectiveness on the committee and extreme positions. Cumberland is far better served in this regard through Rep. Alex Marszalkowski who serves as first vice chair of the House Finance Committee and Sen. Ryan Pearson who serves as chairperson of the Senate Finance Committee.