Nathan Media Center
Fuller Meadow School
September 11, 2012
Call to Order –Chairman Cresta called the meeting to order at 7:30. Present: Mr. Houten (at 8:45), Ms. Jones, Ms. Lindberg, Mr. Prentakis, and Town Administrator Mr. Singer.
Mr. Cresta called for a moment of silence in recognition of the September 11th anniversary.
Minutes - Mr. Jones made a motion to accept the minutes of the August 14, 2012 meeting. Mr. Houten seconded the motion and all were in favor.
Approval of Warrants – A Payroll Warrant was presented in the amount of $161,718. The Payables Warrant is for $538,890. $303,930 is for purchase of power. $71,237 is for debt service including $50,952 for Masco bond interest.
Ms. Lindberg made a motion to approve the warrants. Ms. Jones seconded the motion and all were in favor.
Town Administrator’s Report
Mr. Singer reported that the Building Commissioner’s report for the second month of the fiscal year, is in the packet. Moderate growth continues. $2.6 million in permits were issued. Most were residential with $900,000 in business remodeling.
Paving is complete on Boston and Maple Streets. The striping should happen in a few days. There have been delays in getting the contractor back. The work on Fuller Rd and Meadow Dr. will begin September 24th. The curbing will be removed prior to that day.
Mr. Houten has been attending meetings with the Department of Youth Services (DYS) regarding the $40 million DYS facility planned on Gregory St. The project will be bid in 2014. It will be a 1 ½ to 2 year construction project. The design has been softened to be in keeping with the area. Mr. Prentakis asked how many employees are expected. Mr. Singer said there would be between 15 and 30 more than are there now. This project has been 10 years in the making.
DPW Superintendent, Mr. LaBossiere has been in touch with the District 4 State Highway Department regarding the overlay project for Route 114. They discussed the proposed sidewalk project. The project is primarily a maintenance project making the addition of sidewalks difficult. They may look at adding granite curbing to the roadway. The project is currently scheduled for next summer and the Town doesn’t want to do anything that might delay it. The Town is also lobbying for a bridge replacement on Maple St. This project is at least 10 years away.
Starting on October 31st, the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission (ABCC) will be issuing a new caterer’s license that will have no local involvement.
Congratulations are due to the Middleton School Building Committee (MSBC). The new Howe-Manning Project has earned certification as a High Performing School (MassCHPS), earning the project an additional 2 % in reimbursement.
A compilation of the popular Water Closet columns by former Conservation Agent Pike Messenger is now available. Proceeds from the sale of this book will go to charity.
Petition and Application for Change in License (DBA) only from Coco Key Hotel and Indoor Water Resort to Double Tree Hilton Boston North Shore by Licensee Sage Management, LLC - Matthew Doucette, General Manager, representing Sage Management explained that the hotel has undergone a multi-million dollar renovation and will be converted to the Doubletree name shortly. All the rooms will be renovated. The 7th and 8th floor executive lounges are complete and the renovations are moving down the tower. The 3rd floor cabana rooms are being renovated to be aimed at families. The rooms will have a king size bed and junior size beds. There will be a separate entrance for the family style rooms and activities. The ball rooms are being renovates. Functional
systems such as boilers, elevators and exterior windows are also being replaced.
Ms. Jones noted the changes to the locker room in the Atlantis Sports center. Mr. Doucette added that there would be new men’s and women’s locker rooms and a new dehumidifying system in the pool area.
In the food service area, a new Doubletree buffet will be introduced. The Club Lounge will be renovated before the end of the year.
Ms. Jones asked if there would be any other changes in management. Mr. Doucette said that this is a name change only.
Ms. Lindberg made a motion to approve the change in License (DBA only) from Coco Key Hotel and Indoor Water Resort to Double Tree Hilton Boston North Shore and to sign the Form 43 for the ABCC when it is ready. Ms. Jones seconded the motion and all were in favor.
Accept Donation of gift from the Johnson Family in memory of Marty Johnson Jr. in the amount of $4,546.00 to purchase Life-Saving Equipment for the Town Ambulance – Fire Chief Frank Twiss and Fire Captain Doug LeColst represented the Fire department in accepting this gift. Each year, the Johnson family sponsors a motorcycle ride in memory of Marty Johnson. The family approached the Fire Chief earlier this year and offered to donate some of the proceeds of the ride to the Fire Department. The Department is using the money to purchase a life saving device that allows emergency responders to more easily secure an airway for a person in respiratory distress. It allows the paramedics to actually see into the airway.
Ms. Jones made a motion to accept a gift from the Johnson Family in memory of Marty Johnson Jr. in the amount of $4,546.00 to purchase Life-Saving Equipment for the Town Ambulance. Ms. Lindberg seconded the motion and all were in favor.
Discussion of Zoning Bylaw “Sandwich or A-Frame” Type Sign Compliance - Building Commissioner Richard Bienvenue, Board of Trade President Arthur Carakatsane and business owner Warren Kelley were present to speak on this issue. There have been complaints about non-compliance with this by-law. Mr. Bienvenue said that signs are left out for longer than was intended. A sign is only supposed to stay up for 60 days. Then it should change. There are also window signs in excess of the 20% limit. The signs are supposed to come in every night.
Mr. Carakatsane noted that some businesses such as Sol Bean and Farmer Browns are fastidious about complying with the by-law. He suggests a staged approach with a certified letter to consistent violators with a deadline to come into compliance. The letter could come jointly from the Town and the Board of Trade. After that, a formal cease and desist could be issued, followed by temporary confiscation of signs. Signs would not be returned until a permit is taken out.
Mr. Prentakis notes that the regulations are designed to maintain effectiveness. If there are too many signs or they don’t change, they become invisible. Mr. Cresta added that many businesses don’t get permits. He would like to see permanent revocation of the right to have a sign, if all else fails. Mr. Carakatsane pointed out that virtually every violator has been given a warning.
Ms. Jones asked about political signs. Mr. .Singer said that they are exempt as are real estate signs.
Mr. Kelley said that as a landlord, he walks a fine line. He would like to see no signs but his tenants say that they will lose business without them. He suggests that when a business gets a permit for a sign, they sign a letter of agreement and a copy goes to the landlord. That would give him more leverage to get his tenants to comply.
Mr. Singer pointed out that no one has a permit. He suggests waiving the initial permit fee. Mr. Cresta added that the Town could charge $5 if the business comes in within the 60 days, 25$ if it does not. However Mr. Singer pointed out that the by-law did not establish fees. The Board of Selectmen is the only authority for establishing a fee.
Mr. Cresta said that he liked the staged joint letter. He would also like to see a one or two page question and answer sheet, as well as the ability to permanently revoke a business’ right to a sign. Mr. .Singer said that revoking the right would require a change of the by-law. This would be a Town Meeting action.
Mr. Singer suggested promoting some type of consistent signage for Board of Trade members. Mr. Cresta noted that the A-frame sign was supposed to have more than just the business and what it provides. He suggested running this by Town Counsel and bringing the issue to a future Town Meeting. Also, something needs to be done about the fees.
Mr. Jones asked what other Towns do. Mr. Bienvenue said that many just don’t allow A-frame signs. Some issue tags that must be displayed on the sign so it is obvious when they expire.
In general, signs that do not have to do with a Middleton business should be confiscated.
Ms. Jones noted that the situation has not improved since the by-law was passed. Mr. Cresta asked that the Board be kept appraised and that the issue be put on a future agenda.
Review of Information Collected by Veteran’s Service Officer for Potential use in Naming New Streets and Public Facilities – The Veterans Agent, Mr. Butler, has provided the Board with a list of veterans going back to the French and Indian Wars. This is meant to be a resource for the street naming sub-committee
New Business – Ms. Jones wished to express her appreciation to Scott Saulnier for coordinating the 9/11 commemoration at Howe-Manning.
Executive Session under the Provisions of Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 30A, Section 21, Section 21, Subsection 6 (to consider the value of real property) - Mr. Cresta announced that the Board would be going into Executive Session under Section 21, Paragraph 8 Subsection 6 (to consider the value of real property) and that the Board would not be coming back into open session. Mr. Prentakis voted yes. Ms. Jones voted yes. Mr. Cresta voted yes. Mr. Houten voted yes. Ms. Lindberg voted yes. The Board entered Executive Session at 9:10.
Mary Jane Morrin
Mary Jane Morrin, Recording Secretary
Christine Lindberg, Clerk