Laura Richards announces candidacy for re-election to the Milton Board of Health
My name is Laura Richards and I am announcing my candidacy for re-election to the Milton Board of Health. I am an attorney with over a decade of experience in public health law. I was born and raised in Milton, as was my husband, Tony Sbarra, and our three children, Daniel, Andrew and Lily.
As a lifelong Milton resident, all of the issues facing the town are important to me. I continue to appreciate that to be successful, the Milton Board of Health members must understand that we are dealing with real people who have genuine concerns. All health related issues, especially those confronted by the Board of Health, require the careful consideration of experienced, thoughtful people.
I have served on the Board for seven years. During this time I have used my experience as a public health attorney to provide crucial input on public health law related issues. The other two elected Board members are nurses, and this combination of professional experience has proven truly valuable. We work together seamlessly, each providing counsel and guidance in an effort to make appropriate, informed decisions. While my co-members are able to offer real life professional experience on the health side, my legal background is particularly valuable with issues involving regulation development and implementation, as well as applications for septic and other variances.
Significant changes have taken place since I was first elected to the Board, and I have been part of the decision making process surrounding those changes. The entire makeup and structure of Milton’s Health Department has changed, with the hiring of a new Health Director, three different Health Agents, a new Public Health Nurse and a new Senior Administrative Clerk. These staffing decisions were important to the success of the Health Department going forward and we, as members of the Board of Health, conducted interviews and contributed to the filling of these positions.
Clearly the most significant challenge now facing the Board of Health, and the town itself, is the continuing COVID crisis. The Board has been working on pandemic related issues with other town, local and state agencies for the past year. In these efforts, we have tried to advance the public health interests of the town while recognizing the complexities involved and the justified anxieties felt by many town residents. The coming year will provide other COVID related challenges, but I am hopeful that the Board of Health will meaningfully contribute to Milton’s recovery from the crisis.
It has been an honor, a challenge and a privilege to serve as a Board member for these past seven years. I am committed to this town, and am hopeful that you will allow me to continue to serve it.