Monday, May 20, 2013
Selectmen form ad hoc committee.
Switching to electronic voting at town meeting "could help our attendance," Town Moderator Joe Harrington has told selectmen. Selectmen have established an ad hoc committee to study whether voting electronically at town meeting makes sense for Westborough, and to report back to the board. The committee will consist of five to seven members: Harrington, Selectman Denny Drewry, Town Clerk Nancy Yendriga, an advisory finance committee member, with one-to-three at-large members whom Harrington will recommend to selectmen. Last month, the board agreed to form a group to explore trying electronic voting at the October town meeting. This spring, Barrette, Drewry, Yendriga and Advisory Finance Committee Chairman Edward Behn attended Wayland’s town…
Saturday, May 18, 2013
Recap and analysis of the week in state government.
Like pieces of a puzzle that don't quite fit together yet, the Big Three may have been separated at birth, but with each incremental step their destinies seem to grow more intertwined. No, we're not talking about those Big Three - Gov. Deval Patrick, Senate President Therese Murray and Speaker Robert DeLeo - though they play major character roles in this thickening plot. Instead, three bills have come to define the early months of the 2013 legislative agenda and resolutions on tax hikes, local road funding and the annual state budget continue to be elusive and dependent on one another. Patrick spent the early part of his week welcoming British Prime Minister David Cameron to Boston for a few quick meetings and a visit to the Copley …
Thursday, May 16, 2013
The board will be asked to vote to accept the document on May 28.
By switching to a pay as you throw household trash and recycling collection program, Westborough "could probably save between $60,000 a year if it were a curbside pay as you throw program, up to maybe $400,000 a year if it was a drop off pay as you throw program," Town Manager Jim Malloy told selectmen Tuesday night. But, “the majority of the savings” would come from shifting the cost of household waste collection from the property tax base and onto taxpayers through a fee-based system, Malloy said. That shift is unnecessary "because we have excess levy capacity," he said. "It first came up because when I was first hired, we were right up against the levy limit," Malloy said. On top of that, there is "substantial community opposition" to …
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
McManus must pay fines and volunteer.
Bishop Robert J. McManus will not serve any jail time on charges of drunk driving after he admitted in court on Tuesday that he refused to submit to a chemical test, according to the Telegram and Gazette. McManus will lose his license for six months, pay roughly $900 in court fines, complete 10 hours of community service and attend alcohol education programs, according to the Telegram. These punishments correspond with admitting to refusing to submit to the test. The Narragansett Police Department will drop the drunk driving charge, according to the article. McManus had been charged following a hit-and-run accident earlier this month in Naragansett, R.I.
He'll step down this summer after 33 years on the board.
Westborough Zoning Board of Appeals member Jim Johnson won't seek another term, ending 33 years on the board. Selectmen Vice Chairman George Barrette said Tuesday night that Johnson had written to selectmen and asked not to be reappointed on July 1. Barrette thanked Johnson, the current ZBA chairman, for doing what is "sometimes a very tough job." The ZBA's work is "not light lifting, especially recently," Barrette said.
The accrual date now is the employee's anniversary date.
Westborough's town offices might soon have fewer absences in May and June. Selectmen on Tuesday night agreed to move non-union employees' vacation accrual date to the employee's anniversary date, from July 1, when the fiscal year starts. Assistant Town Manager/Human Resources Director Kristi Williams proposed the change to section 5.3 of Westborough's Personnel Policies and Employee Handbook. The policy affects 40 employees, and the change is consistent with four labor contracts signed this year, Williams said. Previously, the non-union employees lost unused vacation time on July 1, resulting in "a lot of vacations" at once, she said. Selectmen Vice Chairman George Barrette called the change "a great idea." “Unfortunately, by the end of …
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
The discussion is scheduled for 6:50 p.m.
Westborough selectmen are scheduled tonight to continue discussing trying electronic voting at town meeting. Vice Chairman George Barrette and Selectman Denny Drewry will lead the discussion, which starts at 6:50 p.m., according to the Westborough website. Last month, the board agreed to form a group to explore trying electronic voting at the October town meeting. This spring, Barrette, Drewry, Town Clerk Nancy Yendriga and Advisory Finance Committee Chairman Edward Behn attended Wayland’s town meeting, which uses an electronic voting system.
Monday, May 13, 2013
The latest 'You Ask, Patch Answers' has the answer.
Editor's note: In our column "You Ask, Patch Answers," we help you to find answers to your questions. Email email@example.com if you have a question that you would like us to investigate. Today, we answer this inquiry: When is Westborough's deadline for getting a dog license? The deadline is May 31, Westborough Town Clerk Nancy Yendriga said today in a press release. The cost is $10 for a neutered or spayed dog, and $15 for a dog that is not. Cash and checks are both acceptable, she said. "Dogs must be licensed by six months of age," Yendriga said. "Please bring proof of neutering or spaying if it is a new dog and a current rabies certificate. Late fees will start on June 3." The town clerk's office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday…
Saturday, May 11, 2013
Recap and analysis of the week in state government.
Massachusetts' problem is now Virginia's. After a macabre, around-the-clock stakeout of a Worcester funeral home this week by frenzied reporters and furious protestors, the remains of alleged Boston Marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev were secreted out of central Massachusetts and buried in a small Muslim cemetery in rural Virginia. No cemetery in Massachusetts, or public official for that matter, wanted Tsarnaev's body. And Gov. Deval Patrick just seemed relieved the tense standoff was over. "No. I have enough to do," Patrick said, when asked if he wished he had gotten involved to end the theatrics sooner. The April 15 attacks on the finish line of the Boston Marathon threw Beacon Hill policymakers off stride, quieting the raging debate …
Wednesday, May 8, 2013
The $500,000 inspection costs will be distributed among seven communities.
The estimated $500,000 cost of inspections for a $62.4 million renovation to the Assabet Valley Regional Vocational High School will be born by the seven member communities. “The cost will just be assessed to the member communities," said Superintendent-Director Mary Jo Nawrocki of the Assabet Valley School District. Nawrocki declined to comment further on the matter, saying she had not heard anything officially from city of Marlborough officials. She said no cost had been given for the inspection of the project, which is being done in Marlborough. She did not specify the mechanism that would be used to have the member communities pay for the inspections nor whether it would increase the cost of the project. The Marlborough City Council …