Newly Registered Ward 2 Voter Welcome Package Concept

Last year, there were over 400 newly registered voters in Ward 2. I would like to share my vision of how we can welcome them to Salem. Currently, the City of Salem sends out a letter with basic information such as voter registration and information on trash removal. That is certainly useful information; however, Salem has so much more to offer than that. We should not assume that new residents are familiar with all of Salem’s services and amenities.

What if we provided a Welcome Package to newcomers that would not only encourage them to shop locally, but would provide them with the information they need to become informed, enthusiastic and involved members of our community.

A few weeks ago, I met with the Chamber of Commerce to discuss this idea. Here are my suggestions of what a “Welcome to Salem” package could include:

  • “Shop Local postcard” filled with names of participating merchants. New residents will get the card stamped when they visit the store. When their card is filled, they can go to the Chamber of Commerce and get a special welcome gift.   Participating stores can also offer special coupons or discounts for cardholders as an additional incentive to visit and shop.
  • A calendar of events at Salem public venues such as the Commons, the Willows, Salem golf course and Salem Woods.
  • Registration form that would allow new residents to register for all the park passes, licenses and services that Salem offers its residents. Imagine, on just one form, you could order a Forest River pool pass, a dog park pass, a dog license, a Winter Island sticker, a residential parking sticker, a library card, etc.  You could pay for it all on line and get the proper credentials in the mail.
  • A history of Salem.
  • School information, including the name and address of all public schools, and information on how to register your school age child.
  • Listings of all neighborhood associations and their websites or contact information.
  • Information on local restaurants with cost saving coupons.
  • Information about Salem’s museums, theaters and historical sights, e.g., Salem Athenaeum, House of Seven Gables, PEM, Hamilton Hall, Witch House, Pioneer Village, Cinema Salem, Ames Hall, Salem Theater and arts and music at Salem State.
  • Government listing of all the departments and City Council representatives.


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