By SCOTT JACKSON
With the calendar turned over to a new year, all eyes will be on Mayor Thomas Koch to see if he decides to seek a new term in Quincy’s municipal election this fall.
Koch, who turns 56 on Jan. 22, has been the city’s chief executive since 2008 and is now in the final year of the first four-year mayoral term in Quincy’s history. In a recent interview, Koch said he has not yet decided if he will run again this year.
“I will be making a decision in the coming weeks,” he said.
Koch said he would not announce his decision during his annual State of the City address, scheduled for Jan. 28, because he wants the speech to be apolitical.
“They will be separated,” Koch said when asked if he would make his announcement during the Jan. 28 event. “That’s the State of the City. It should not be political.”
The decision would likely be announced after the State of the City, he added.
Koch said he would speak with his wife and family first about running for re-election, and then consider his agenda and what he wants to accomplish.
“The personal part, the family stuff, having that conversation with the Mrs. Then it’s where are we with our agenda and our vision and take it from there,” Koch responded when asked what factors he would consider when making his decision.
If he were to win a new four-year term in the fall, Koch would become the longest-serving mayor in Quincy’s history. Two other mayors – Amelio Della Chiesa and James Sheets – each served for 12 years. Della Chiesa served for four years under a Plan E form of government and then eight years under Plan A; Sheets’ entire tenure was under Plan A, the city’s current form of government.
Koch said the chance to become the city’s longest-serving mayor would not factor into his decision.
“I could care less about that, quite frankly. That’s just a stat,” he said.
Koch, who worked in various roles in city government before becoming mayor, said his 11 years in office have gone by quickly.
“It’s funny, because you know I’ve been in government for a lot longer than that. So there are times I feel like I’ve been around a long time, but, as far as being mayor, it’s just whipped by,” Koch said.
Koch had $343,700 in his campaign account as of Dec. 31, according to the state Office of Campaign and Political Finance. He said he spent about $750,000 during his last re-election campaign in 2015, which included a four-way preliminary race.
In addition to Koch, all nine city councillors will be up for re-election in the fall. Three of the six seats on the School Committee – those held by Paul Bregoli, James DeAmicis and Kathryn Hubley – will also be up for grabs. City councillors serve two-year terms while school board members have four-year terms.
The suspect in the death of an 11-month old Quincy girl has been indicted for murder.
The suspect, Shu Feng Hsu, age 28, was indicted on Friday, according to David Traub, spokesman for Norfolk District Attorney Michael Morrissey. Hsu is set to be arraigned in Superior Court following the indictment; Traub said the indictment had yet to be scheduled as of Monday.
Hsu, a Weymouth resident, had previously pleaded not guilty to the murder charge in Quincy District Court. She was held without bail following the November arraignment.
Hsu was home alone with her niece, 11-month old Chloe Chen, on Feb. 15 of last year when she called 9-1-1 to say the child had gone limp and was unresponsive, prosecutors said. Chen was rushed to Boston Medical Center, where she suffered multiple seizures. Chen died two days later.
Hsu was originally arrested and charged with assault in battery last March.
By SCOTT JACKSON
Quincy police are investigating an incident involving gunfire Wednesday night, but believe it was not a random act.
Police responded to Keyes Street in Quincy Point for a report of shots fired around 8 p.m. on Wednesday. The officers who arrived on scene located ballistic evidence, police said.
No injuries had been reported as of Thursday morning, and, based on the initial investigation, all parties involved were known to each other.
“We do not believe this to be a random incident,” police said.
Police continue to investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding the incident. Anyone with information is asked to contact Det. Tom Pepdjonovich by phone 617-745-5774 or email at email@example.com. Tips can also submitted using the department’s MyPD smartphone app.
By SCOTT JACKSON
Gov. Charlie Baker on Wednesday nominated Jeffrey K. Clifford to the position of associate justice of the Quincy District Court.
Clifford has worked in private practice since 2007, representing clients in state and federal court. He began his legal career in 1998 as an assistant district attorney in the Norfolk District Attorney’s office, a post he held until 1999. From April of 1999 to November 2000, Clifford served as assistant regional counsel in the Boston Department of Social Services. He then spent four years as an ADA in Suffolk County, followed by three years as assistant general counsel and manager of compliance for the state Department of Industrial Accidents.
Clifford has served as the president and treasurer of the Norfolk County Bar Advocates, and is currently the organization’s vice president. Additionally, he is a member of the Federal Criminal Justice Act Panel and a senior mentor in the Advanced Trial Training Program for new lawyers.
Clifford earned his law degree from Catholic University School of Law in Washington, D.C, in 1998 and his undergraduate degree from the University of Massachusetts Boston.
In addition to his legal career, Clifford served in the U.S. Marine Corps reserves from 1990 to 1996 and from 2005 to 2006, serving in both the Persian Gulf War and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Baker on Wednesday also nominated Terri Klug Cafazzo to the position of associate justice of the Middlesex Probate and Family Court. She has ten years experience in private practice and 18 years experience as a first assistant and register in the Probate and Family Court.
The Governor’s Council is tasked with confirming judicial nominees in the state.
“Attorney Clifford’s distinguished career in the private and public sectors have prepared him well to serve as a District Court judge and the Probate and Family Court will benefit greatly from Attorney Cafazzo’s knowledge of the court,” Baker said in a statement. “I am pleased to nominate these candidates and submit their names to the Governor’s Council for their advice and consent.”
“Both Attorneys Clifford and Cafazzo are lawyers with valuable experience before the District and Probate and Family Courts,” Lt. Governor Karyn Polito added. “I am confident that, if confirmed, these attorneys will serve on the bench with distinction.”
The City of Quincy Office of Emergency Management, in collaboration with the Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety, the Boston Public Health Commission, and the DelValle Institute for Emergency Preparedness, will conduct a Basic Community Emergency Preparedness Course on Jan. 29 and 30.
The blended web-based and in-person interactive course will train participants on preparedness for disasters and emergencies such as blizzards, hurricanes, house fires, and flooding. Following completion of the course, participants will be more knowledgeable and resilient in planning and preparing for potential emergency scenarios. The course will also present attendees with the required concepts to provide technical assistance and guidance to other members of the community during emergencies.
The in-person portion of the course will be conducted on Wednesday, Jan. 30, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Quincy Park and Recreation complex, 1 Merrymount Parkway, and will be open to all Quincy residents.
The web-based portion of the course can be completed anywhere online from noon to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 29.
The course is being offered in a series of courses coordinated by Quincy Emergency Management Director Ally Sleiman, in an initiative to enhance public knowledge and capabilities to respond to and recover from emergency situations and disasters.
For more information on the course contact Quincy Emergency Management at (617) 376-1105, or visit delvalle.bphc.org/rshtt to register.