Friday, January 18, 2008
Shorts from the Selectmen, January 8
· Election. The Presidential primary vote will take place 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. February 5 in the Clark Room of Town Hall. The Town Clerk is preparing for a record turnout.
· Town Warrant. The board voted to open the Town Meeting Warrant. Articles anticipated include: pathway easements, additional wireless sites, an intermunicipal agreement with Acton for the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail, an agreement with the Town of Concord for shared services, transferring funds to the Concord-Carlisle Regional School District for budget deficits, and a request for funds to hire an operations project manager for the proposed Carlisle Public School building project.
· Livable Carlisle Community (LCC). John Ballantine gave an update from LCC, a non-partisan group seeking to address changes and challenges that could determine Carlisle's evolution over the next 20 years. Ballantine was pleased with the morning's turnout at the Conservation Coffee where he spoke, and outlined LCC plans for an upcoming round-table and town survey.
· Finances. Selectman Tim Hult briefed the board on two recent issues: court cases lost over roll-back taxes for property on West Street (see "Carlisle loses $216,000 tax suit," January 11) and $1.6 million which did not qualify for reimbursement during a state audit of the Carlisle School's new wastewater treatment plant. Under a tight deadline, the town accepted the project audit, and now Town Finance Director Larry Barton is putting together an appeal to request a portion of the denied reimbursement.(see "MSBA funds limited for Carlisle School wastewater plant," page 1.) Hult reassured taxpayers that they will not suffer further impact since the cost of the project has already been incorporated in the tax rate.
· Carlisle School. Hult predicted that over the next four to five months there will be more clarity on the size and nature of a proposed Carlisle School building project. The Finance Committee will discuss the school's FY09 budget requests on Wednesday, January 23.
· Cable TV. Tice has been negotiating with Comcast for Carlisle to receive Channel 10, to which Concord-CarlisleTV will be moving some of their educational information about the high school. Tice said that Carlisle residents currently pay more for their cable than Concord residents. Town Administrator Madonna McKenzie pointed out the need for a cable advisory committee.
· Honor Roll. Selectman Alan Carpenito informed the board that four meetings for the veterans' memorial honor roll have taken place, and the project is moving along well. Recently an expert who conducted a survey of all such memorials in the state spoke to the committee.
· Benfield housing. Regarding affordable housing, Selectman John Williams said that the Housing Authority has finished a draft of the Benfield proposal request that will be reviewed by Town Counsel. Williams believed "we are doing something right" by this project, citing that "seven residents of Carlisle have asked to be placed on a list for a building that hasn't been built yet."
· 40B subcommittee. Carlisle's 40B working group is streamlining the 40B application process. It is expected that an interim report will be complete within a week, at which point it will go to the various boards for comments. "Cindy Nock, Steve Hinton and Ed Rolf are doing the work," Williams said. "It's definitely going to help the process the next time."
· Ambulance fees. Selectmen passed a $20 increase in ambulance fees in keeping with allowable Medicare charges, on request of the Fire Department.
· River signage. Sue Flynn on behalf of The Organization for the Assabet River requested permission to have signs placed along roadways to identify tributaries, because, "one of the things we can do to protect water quality is to raise awareness of smaller streams." The Selectmen gave permission for the new signs.
· Resignation. Charles Ferraro resigned from the Board of Assessors as of January 1. The board thanked him for his years of service to the town.
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