Docket Digest for the Week of March 31-April 4

A weekly summary of Board of Aldermen agendas and actions highlighting items of interest to the LWVN.

Board and Committee Meeting Schedule

Extracted from the full Aldermanic calendar.

Key to color coding: CPC, Planning, Environmental, Finance, Charter/Elections, Housing.

March 31 – April 4

Monday, 31

7p

School Committee–public hearing Budget

Ed Center 

Tuesday, 1

7p

Real Property

222

Thursday, 3

6:30p

Accessory Apartment

222

Agendas:

  • 3-31-14 School: Professional Development, Communications, Public Hearing: Proposed Budget 
  • 4-1-14 Real Property: Newton Arts Center at 61 Washington Park; Austin St.
  • 4-3-14 Accessory Apartment Subcommittee: discussion of accessory apartments

Documents:

  • Documents for Austin Street Parking Lot and New Arts Center discussion
  • Zoning draft annual action plan
  • News Notes includes:
    • Final FY15 Budget Discussion with Mayor Warren – The rescheduled meeting with the Mayor on the FY15 budget will take place on Thursday, April 3rd at 7:00p.m in the Mayor’s Office. Please RSVP to Hannah Woit if you plan to attend this meeting.
    • Plastic Bag Ordinance Working Group – The Mayor’s Office has established a working group on the proposed ordinance and Alderman Leary will be joining the group as the Board representative. The scope of the working group is to fully assess the impact of the potential ordinance, the resources needed to support any new law, and the potential to raise the issue to a regional effort. As I’ve mentioned many times and in many places, we can expect some updates from Alderman Leary once this gets up and going.
    • Angier Working Group Update – Submitted by Ald. Ruthanne Fuller, Ald. John Rice and Ald. Lenny Gentile – We have sent the early site package out to contractors after it was reviewed and approved by the Design Review Committee. This package includes construction documents for such items as salvage, abatement & demolition of the building, site preparation (e.g., removal of trees where the retaining wall will be built alongside the MBTA tracks), protection of the church and residential abutters, and construction of the retaining wall. By going out to bid early on these items while the rest of the work is still being designed, the contractor can start work on schedule in late June. 

As construction is about to begin, we are setting up monthly community meetings to discuss construction operations. The meetings will be on the second Thursday of every month at 7 pm before the Waban Area Council meeting. The location is the Brigham House at 20 Hartford Street in Newton Highlands, a building that is handicap accessible. The first meeting will be on May 8th.

 Please note that the MBTA has informed us that the tree removal next to the tracks can only be done from 1:30 am – 4:00 am when the electricity can be shut down. This work may take a week or two. The Public Building Department and contractor, W.T. Rich, will do everything they can to minimize the impact on abutters. We’re fortunate that most of the immediate abutters (the school, the Church, the golf course) will not be inconvenienced. The work will be done some time in May, June or July.

Looking ahead, there is a status update on Angier for a joint meeting of the Angier School Building Committee and the Design Review Committee next week on Thursday, April 3 at the Ed Center, Room 210 at 6pm. The DRC will get another status update, including information on energy utilization, on April 16th. In early June, the working group will review the 60% construction document (CD) budget. Then, on June 13th, the DRC will review the 60% construction documents and the budget. The 60% CD review is an important milestone as the design can still be influenced if estimates come in high.

    • Police Staffing Working Group Update – Submitted by Ald. Rick Lipof and Ald. Allan Ciccone – For the past few months we have been meeting with Bob Rooney, Maureen Lemieux, Chief Mintz, and several other ranking officers in an effort to fully understand and analyze all facets and functions of the Police Department. Our charge is to bring to the Board a recommendation as to the appropriate number of officers and staff necessary to adequately protect the citizens of Newton and provide the necessary services that we all count on.

The moving parts of the Police Department are numerous and complicated, but we have come far in our understanding of the institution and its needs. We are nearing the end of our study and recommendations will be made in the next few weeks. We will provide a full report in your Friday packet on April 18th, in time for budget review.

Docket Digest for the Week of March 24-28

A weekly summary of Board of Aldermen agendas and actions highlighting items of interest to the LWVN.

Board and Committee Meeting Schedule

Extracted from the full Aldermanic calendar.

Key to color coding: CPC, Planning, Environmental, Finance, Charter/Elections, Housing.

March 24-28

Monday, 24

7p

7p

7:45p

School Committee

Finance

Zoning

Ed Center 

222

202

Tuesday, 25

7p

Real Property & Zoning

Chamber/

Thursday, 27

7p

Traffic Council

222

Agendas:

  • 3-24-14 School: Budget & straw vote; fiscal report; elementary school plans; appointments to Design Review Committee
  • 3-24-14 Finance : Transfers to allow city to purchase LED Streetlights; $69,000 for storm drain repair near Hammond Pond; funds for water repairs; 
  • 3-24-14 Zoning includes: discussion of the Zoning Reform Project, with presentation
  • 3-25-14 Real Property & Zoning: Austin Street redevelopment
  • 3-27-14 Traffic Council: consideration of stop signs at: Selwyn & Mildred (wards 6&8); Parking restrictions/changes: Florence St. (wards 7&8), Louise & Craftsland (8), Walnut Place (2), Inis Circle (3), and changes to regulations on the books.

Document:

Schools Fiscal and operational update

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