I have lived in this city since my marriage. I raised two wonderful children, enriched my life with so many wonderful new friends and activities with the schools and church and I thought this would be my home for the rest of my life.
I was blindsided with some very bad times and changes when my husband left this family in 2010. He ran for reelection that November with no regard for how the rumors and comments would affect his family and he won. It seemed more important to be on council than to protect his children who ended up emotionally broken by his actions.
Today, he continues to hold the position of city councilman in Gloucester. He has lived at a different residence for these past six years, but his name is still on our deed and mortgage. I have been trying to save my home from foreclosure. I entered into an agreement to make “trial mortgage payments” in good faith after which time I would be offered a loan modification but when it came down to needing his signature on the loan, he refused. When the financial company suggested a Quit Claim Deed, we had one drawn up but he would not sign that either.
Attempts to reach out to John Hutchinson as my councilman to help save my home were met with disconnected calls and text messages telling me “not to call, text or email.” I sent two certified letters in an attempt to contact him but somehow, both letters mysteriously disappeared. Even a plea for help to our mayor, William James didn’t work. The mayor, a longtime friend of John Hutchinson, also answered my request for help with a text message stating “he was asked to stay out of it” and he did. The mayor once wrote that "this town belongs to every one of us...” but these refusals of help prove otherwise. I have gone to council meetings where I have seen people insulted, yelled at and even fired from their jobs if they show the least bit of opposition to the agenda, and yet, we are told we have rights. The power of city council is something that can change lives in a heartbeat and my family is proof of that.
Recently, I reached out to Congressman Norcross for help. His office immediately began working with the mortgage company to find a way to help me - which gave me hope. But on November 16th, I was informed by the mortgage company that they cannot offer me a loan because of a bankruptcy petition filed by John Hutchinson in which he listed this house. I am the one who has been paying the mortgage, the taxes, the water bills, basically everything hoping for a loan. I have put thousands of dollars into saving my house which has been my home for over thirty years and when I approached him for help he refused. I suppose bankruptcy will serve some purpose for him but to do something like this, especially at this time of year, seems selfish.
John Hutchinson may have won another election in this city but maybe it’s time for a change. In my opinion, he is no longer a man of honesty or integrity and the fact that he can so easily turn his back on a family he vowed to support, makes me wonder where his priorities lie. He accepted an obligation to serve but what he does for this city can never be as important as what he could have done for his children who will also be uprooted in foreclosure.
Sadly, in January 2017, he will once again place his hand on a bible and swear “to perform the duties of councilman of the City of Gloucester faithfully, impartially and justly to the best of his ability.”
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