Mayor Carlo DeMaria begins his 15th year as mayor in January, 2023.
He is the second longest serving mayor in Everett history as 2023 begins.
The late Phillip J. Crowley served as mayor of Everett from 1950-1966.
DeMaria has served since January 7, 2008.
Many of the mayor’s supporters have voiced the opinion that DeMaria will be the mayor forever.
Whether or not this is true remains to be seen, obviously.
After all, nothing lasts forever.
This being said, the mayor has had a long and successful run, not without controversies and difficulties to contend with.
This is known.
In 2023, the mayor remains the king of the hill in the Everett political arena.
The same could be said for 2022.
Many things change. Many remain the same about Everett City government and the mayor.
2023 does not appear to be a year for change…unless… changing unforeseen situations arise which toss an iron rod into the spokes of the mayor’s constantly spinning wheels.
Despite a spate of lawsuits, protests, and a widening group of outspoken residents opposed to his administration, he remains unequivocally the proverbial man in charge of city hall.
The man in charge of city hall in modern Everett controls the city, for better or for worse, in a very real way.
The mayor in 2023 will continue to control the city council, the school committee, all city departments, the police and fire departments as well as every aspect of city government elected and appointed.
During the course of his mayoralty, he has been able to assert his control increasingly over every element of government and politics.
He is arguably the city’s most successful politician in its modern history having won a succession of elections. He has beaten all comers trying to unseat him since 2008.
The mayor also controls with an iron fist the development direction the city has taken under his various administrations.
In 2023, hundreds and hundreds of new apartment housing units now under construction will be opened.
Hundreds more came on line in 2022.
Hundreds more new units city boards have given permission to be built will likely go up all over the city in a continuation of the general expansion of the development that has changed Everett from a sleepy, postindustrial outpost just north of Boston, to a veritable boomtown of construction and the expansion of the apartment housing marketplace.
The Encore Casino and Hotel will also be expanding dramatically, though not in 2023 but this city approved, and soon to be Massachusetts Gaming Commission approved expansion, will change the face of lower Broadway across from the casino.
That’s the bright side of the picture for the mayor.
The not so bright side for the mayor in 2023 is the rising up of many new voices wanting to be heard, wanting to be paid attention to, calling out for a change to what they perceive as the mayor’s dictatorial way of conducting business.
Many people are fed up with feeling excluded.
These powerful voices have not been experienced by the mayor for much of his time of service.
They are difficult to silence.
They first appeared in 2020, came on strong in 2021, and became a bit of an impediment to his administration in 2022.
The federal investigation by the US Attorney’s office and the Justice Department into racism, discrimination and retaliation that goes back five years involves the mayor and everyone in city government.
Most likely the results of this investigation will come out sometime in 2023.
With no real insight into what exactly the US Attorney is looking at, there is no way of knowing what the result of the investigation will be.
There are also the claims of racism and discrimination with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination filed against the mayor recently by an administrator of color in the school department.
The school superintendent is believed to be set to file a law suit for the same reasons against the mayor in Superior Court.
And there are other costly and time consuming lawsuits and or legal actions taking place which has required the mayor to open a legal defense fund funded by contributions.
The newly empowered largely Black, Brown and Hispanic Everett High School students represent a new challenge for the mayor.
Last year they managed large, public, anti-racism protests which led to accusations being made about the may- or’s cousin former Councilor Anthony DiPierro and others. DiPierro resigned in disgrace after weeks of protests. The mayor’s former communications chief was also forced to resign because of her participation in sharing racist memes and for sharing racist language without DiPierro and others.
The mayor has said publicly the federal investigation will not affect him.
In 2021, the mayor was the highest paid mayor in the state. In 2022, he refused the $50,000 longevity payment that was set for him. Instead, he did not accept it, which rep- resented a $40,000 loss over
the previous four years. Subsequently, the city council stripped him of the payment.
Former City Councilor and Attorney Fred Capone has called the mayor’s longevity payments “fraud” and “theft.”
The Inspector General’s office is allegedly studying the matter.