PEABODY — Barry Sinewitz served his last meeting as a city councilor, but not before making a final motion to increase government transparency.
Just before the gavel fell on his council career, Sinewitz asked that Planning and Zoning Board of Appeals meetings be televised on cable television. Peabody Access Telecommunications broadcasts and re-airs City Council and School Committee meetings.
Sinewitz said the contentious hearings over the proposed Birch Hill subdivision are one reason to televise more meetings.
“We did have the Planning Board meeting on Birch Hill and it was not a fun meeting,” he said. “There was a lot of disrespect toward elected officials, there was disrespect to Peabody police, and above all, there was disrespect to the neighbors.”
Televising the meetings would let voters know what’s happening in the city, he said.
“People of the city pay a lot of money to run the government and they should be able to see what it is doing,” he said.
During his last meeting, Sinewitz also asked councilors to keep an eye on the financial status of the Meadow at Peabody Golf Course. During the past several years, he has asked the council to seek ways to increase revenue at the municipal course.
He praised Joel Saslaw who served as council president.
On Jan. 8, Mark O’Neill will be sworn in as Ward 6 City Councilor.
Also retiring from the council are at-large members Tom Walsh and Michael Garabedian. Walsh is stepping down to concentrate on his role as a state representative, while Garabedian is retiring after two decades to focus on his family and business.
Ryan Melville and Tom Rossignoll will be the new at-large councilors next year.