Total Wine is a Total Mind-Blowing Experience

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There is nothing quite like Total Wine at the Gateway Mall, which boasts a seemingly endless selection of wines.

By Josh Resnek 

As a longtime Kappy’s shopper – I grew up with the Kaplans on the North Shore – I never imagined there are larger liquor stores out there competing with them for volume and customers.

Well, after a visit Monday afternoon to the Total Wine store in the Gateway Mall, I can’t wait to have a talk with the Kaplans about what is going on there.

First of all, Total Wine is the largest, best stocked most overwhelming liquor store experience I have ever had.

I would think most shoppers there would agree – it is a wine, liquor, beer and more experience quite unlike any other in the area – all the way to Newton, really.

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City Changes Percentage of Required Affordable Housing for New Construction

To What End?

By Josh Resnek

The city council went from nothing to nowhere debating for about two hours a percentage change that requires developers to allow a certain percentage of new units constructed in the city to be offered at lower rentals in order to enlarge the supply of affordable apartments in the city.

The bottom line in this two-hour debate that led to one percentage being lowered to 15% instead of the 20% where it stood was this: very few, if any new construction units have been built as affordable housing.

Two major projects, the Batchyard, with more than 500 units and the 360 unit megacomplex on the Revere Beach Parkway now being built, contribute not one new unit of affordable housing for the city.

This statistic was revealed by Councilor Fred Capone, who indicated he believed the city was being hurt by not living  up to the word of its desire to make available more affordable housing units for residents here.

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Council Sends School Funding Request to Finance Commission

By Josh Resnek

The City Council has sent the public school’s request for $2.5 million in educational funding intended for it, but withheld by the mayor, for a decision to be made by the School Finance Commission at its November 1 meeting.

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The Mayor of Everett motion

The motion, which was easily passed, came on the heels of a private consultation between the mayor and Councilor John Hanlon.

Hanlon told his colleagues that the School Finance Commission, comprised of several councilors, school committee members, school and public officials, was better suited to discuss and rule on the matter than the council’s Committee of the Whole, which was scheduled to hear the issue. Hanlon’s motion ultimately passed.

Monday evening’s action in a crowded council chamber followed a public speaking session dominated by Assistant Superintendents Charles Obremski and Kevin Shaw’s pleas for the mayor to release the Chapter 70 funding he has been withholding.

The mayor announced last week he was withholding the funding, acquired for the public schools by Senator Sal DiDomenico as part of a special funding package approved by the Senate and the governor to ease funding shortages being experienced by school systems like Everett’s throughout the state.

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Mayor Suggested Using High School Age Kids to Canvas City for Casino Effort

Mayor Allegedly Said City Hall Employees Must Do as He Says or Face Repercussions

By Josh Resnek

During the last 30 days before the 2013 citywide referendum was held on allowing casino gambling in Everett, the mayor apparently offered up high school aged students, graduates, and members of the National Honor Society, to participate in a citywide canvassing scheme to aid in assuring Wynn officials a victory when all the votes were counted, according to information received by the Leader Herald.

The mayor expressed enthusiasm for hiring the high school aged kids to canvas for the gambling referendum for city hall so he could gather information about how voters were tending to think and to gauge how they might vote.

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Lunch on the Everett Line in an Unlikely Place

Two bowls of pho from the court inside the 99 Asian Supermarket.

By Josh Resnek

My son Jacob has a Vietnamese girlfriend. They eat Vietnamese food everywhere all the time. I have been trying out Vietnamese food as a result. I have tried two places in East Boston – one on Meridian Street, the other on Bennington Street. Both were good, but not up to the level of good I experienced recently.

My son recommended 60 Broadway Malden, right on the Everett line.

“You’ll love it. It is the best Vietnamese food I’ve eaten except for my girlfriend’s parents,” Jacob said.

He was right.

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