Friday, October 8, 1999
Petitioners want Conant Land building restriction
Petitioners have put on the Warrant for the Special Town Meeting a proposed building restriction on the Conant Land. Article 6 of the draft Warrant dated October 4 reads: "To see if the town will authorize and require the selectmen to transfer control of the Conant Land to the Carlisle Conservation Commission to be used solely for conservation purposes and passive recreation, exclusive of the potential development of a municipal water supply and or the contiguous expansion of the town offices or fire station."
In a discussion of this item at the selectmenís meeting on September 28, selectman Michael Fitzgerald did not mince words about this petition. "I don't agree with those people who think we've raped the Conant Land," he said. "We've built conscientiously. Except for Saint Irene's [the former Saint Irene property at 72 Bedford Road], it's the only piece of land left in the town center which can be used for municipal purposes."
The selectmen's liaison to the municipal land committee, Burt Rubenstein, informed the rest of the board that the town does not own enough land for all the town's anticipated needs over the next 15 to 20 years. To which Fitzgerald responded, "Either we acquire other parcels to meet these needs or use the land we have." Selectman John Ballantine suggested that input be gathered from other boards in town on prospective uses of Conant or other town-owned land and the impact of a conservation restriction on the intended uses.
There were six other articles on the October 4 draft. Previously discussed articles were the purchase of the former Saint Irene Church, the new wireless communications facility bylaw, a transfer from free cash to make up a shortfall in the FY00 budget, a contingency plan if the free cash transfer is not approved or if free cash is not certified in time, and a request by the Carlisle Public School for additional funds to make the Brick Building compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. There will also be an article allowing housing authority chair Marty Galligan to give an update on plans to build affordable housing on the Conant Land.
Performance evaluation forms have been distributed to all boards, department heads and committees with non-union personnel. An informational session on how to complete the performance review form will be held on October 14 at 1:30 p.m. in the Clark Room. Selectmen had expressed frustration about the review process as implemented last year, and the personnel policy will be further discussed at that meeting.
Gift for pathways
Developer Bill Costello will donate the value of 450 tons of asphalt into the fund established for pathways planning and construction, according to selectman Vivian Chaput. Chaput explained that as part of the Tall Pines project Costello had volunteered to pave Fiske Street, but since the street has already been paved by the department of public works Costello will reimburse the town for the cost of the paving.
Chapter 90 funds reduced
Carlisle will be receiving only one-third of the amount usually received from the state for highway projects, the town administrator informed the selectmen last week. Instead of $189,000 appropriated at Town Meeting, the town will be receiving only approximately $67,000 with the hope that another one-third will be received later in the year. DeManche explained that a much larger portion of the state monies were funneled into the Big Dig. Selectman Doug Stevenson instructed DeManche to reprioritize the townís Chapter 90 projects.
Update on Carriage Way
Planning board member Michael Epstein met with the selectmen last week to discuss negotiations with developer Bill Costello with respect to the town-owned parcel at the end of the proposed development on East Riding Drive now known as Carriage Way. Epstein summarized that Costello is willing to give the town additional acreage and the necessary frontage to make the townís lot a buildable lot in exchange for a longer road, reduction in fees and significant waivers of other planning board requirements. Selectmen were clearly interested in pursuing the options for making the lot developable. Selectman Michael Fitzgerald concluded, ìThe lot has a significant value if it is buildable; if not, it has only a market of one,î in that Costello could add the land to the subdivision.
© 1999 The Carlisle Mosquito