By Barbara Taormina
Ward 3 incumbent City Councillor Anthony Cogliandro is running unopposed in the upcoming election.
Although he’s heading back to his seat on the council, he’s still out holding signs and talking with the people in the neighborhoods he represents about their needs and concerns.
Cogliandro is a people politician.
“I am the type who shows up at your doorstep if you have an issue,” he said in an interview with The Revere Advocate. “I like being the point person, I know who to call to get things done,” he said.
While he finds the role of ward councillor rewarding, he admits that the job of city councillor comes with high stakes.
“I’m one of eleven people who has a say in how the city runs. When it comes to biolabs and $500 million high schools, those are things that bring a lot of pressure to the job,” he said.
Because of that pressure, Cogliandro is at every meeting possible when city business is on the agenda. Fellow councillors know him as someone who always does the homework and always meets with constituents when there’s a plan or project in the works that could affect their quality of life.
He said the city found more wetlands than anyone anticipated at Wonderland.
“I was the only one to ask about the conservation commission’s findings,” he said.
As for the new high school, which is now being planned in Ward 3, Cogliandro said he opposed the Wonderland site. It wasn’t because he favored one location over the other, it was because of the cost.
“I couldn’t see spending money that puts our city in the negative by millions of dollars. It was fiscally irresponsible,” he said adding that financial risk doesn’t account for the $100 million eminent domain lawsuit the former owners of Wonderland are pursuing against the city.
Cogliandro said the city needs to pause development and take the time needed to catch up with the recent expansion and population growth. He mentioned the police department which has 95 officers, and the chief says the city needs 135.
However, he does welcome commercial development.
“We definitely want more but where are they going to build?” he asked adding he frequently passes by the Sozio lot and wonders what’s taking so long.
“We need more commercial development but we have to be cautious about where it goes,” he said.
Many Revere residents know Cogliandro from his many years as an instructor at Revere Karate Academy. He said he uses a lot of his skills as a sixth-degree black belt on the council. He observes, listens and pays close attention to detail.
He brings all of that to serving Ward 3, but also the city at large.
“I ran for the council because I didn’t want anyone else to move out of the city because they couldn’t afford it,” he said.
The job as a city councillor has gotten more complicated but Cogliandro’s motives have not.
“My goal is always to do the right thing,” he said.