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Billerica: Some things never change

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Author: SomervilleTom

Multiple sources report that Billerica selectman George Simolaris (a painting contractor by trade) faces arrest, prosecution, and fines because he had the audacity to paint five crosswalks himself after months of inaction from the town.

BILLERICA — A member of the Billerica select board got so frustrated by delays in painting crosswalks in town that he took matters into his own hands and painted them himself.

Now he faces arrest.

George Simolaris, a painter by trade and an advocate for pedestrian safety, used green deck paint on five crosswalks in the town center this weekend.

The Lowell Sun quotes Mr. Simolaris:

“This project was supposed to be done by November, then it was supposed to be done by the opening day of Little League, then Memorial Day, then Fourth of July. It just wasn’t coming to fruition, so I thought as a roadway commissioner I could do this as a temporary solution,” Simolaris said.

His fellow board members are calling for him to resign.

Meanwhile, the town immediately power-washed the streets in question, removing his work. Apparently the town couldn’t find a way to do the crosswalk painting itself for months, yet was able to remove the ad-hoc replacement within hours. The entire episode convinces me that nothing has changed in Billerica in the thirty years since I left, and that I made the right decision to leave.

Some things never change.

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