The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, February 27, 2009

Raftery retires as Moderator

To the Editor:

I will not seek the nomination for Town Moderator at the upcoming Caucus. Jan and I are winding down in Carlisle, and once the expansion of our Chatham house is completed, we will likely take up permanent residence there. I have enjoyed my role on the Planning Board, on the Board of Selectmen and as Town Moderator, but it is time for someone else to take the baton.

Tom Raftery

Concord Street

Trustee says goodbye

To the Editor:

It is with sadness that I announce that I will not be running for another three-year term as a Trustee at the Gleason Library when my term expires this spring. Being a Library Trustee has been one of the most fulfilling and rewarding volunteer jobs I have ever held and I will miss the collegial working relationship with my fellow Trustees, Priscilla Stevens and Ann Rosas. I will also miss working with Angela Mollet who, to me, embodies all that any town could possibly hope for in a Library Director: professionalism, complete and utter dedication to the library and its employees, and a forward-thinking approach to all aspects of the library. I know that the Trustees will continue to guide our library well under Angela’s superb management.

The Town Caucus will be held on Monday, March 2, and any Carlisle citizen interested in running for office should be present to be nominated. I urge anyone who might be interested in becoming a Library Trustee to contact anyone of us to learn more about the job. I know you will find it as interesting and personally gratifying as I have.

Dale Ryder

Lowell Street

Board of Health seeks volunteers

To the Editor:

In December Public Health Region 4A asked its member communities to activate their Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) in order to assist communities affected by a devastating ice storm. Public Health Region 4A provided 166 volunteers over the course of 11 days, covering 305 shelter shifts. The MRC deployment met its mission, which was to provide a safe space for residents with food and medical care as needed. Carlisle was fortunate to have MRC Volunteers Bill Ho and Donna Walker-Margolies who participated and other volunteers who offered to be on standby. Many lessons were learned from this mass care event and will be incorporated into future regional and local MRC planning.

If you are interested in doing something more for your town, there are currently two opportunities. The first would be as an elected Board of Health member. There are currently two openings on the Board of Health. This is an elected, three-year term. Incumbent Michael Holland has agreed to run again. Someone with a medical, scientific or legal background would be particularly desirable, but anyone who is interested is encouraged to run. The town caucus is March 2 at 7 p.m. at Town Hall.

The second opportunity would be as co-chair of the Carlisle MRC Executive Committee. This is an appointed position. Mary deAlderete is the current co-chairperson. Lea Johnson had to relinquish this position last summer due to a new job. Lea was an excellent chairperson and the Board is very grateful for her efforts on behalf of the Carlisle MRC. Upcoming activities for the MRC include organizing training opportunities, establishing neighborhood networks and updating emergency plans. The Executive Committee meets once a month as needed. A medical background is not a requirement, only a willingness to help with Carlisle’s emergency response capabilities.

Additional information can be obtained by calling the Board of Health office (1-978-369-0283). Thank you.

Jeffrey A. Brem, Chairman

Carlisle Board of Health

Caucus information

To the Editor:

The Annual Town Caucus will be held on Monday, March 2, at 7 p.m. in the Clark Room at Town Hall. The Caucus is the common forum to have candidates’ names added to the Annual Town Election Ballot. The election will be held Tuesday, May 12, 2009 from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m.

At the Caucus, up to two nominees for each open position may be accepted. To be placed on the ballot, candidates must be nominated by a registered voter and have their nomination seconded by a different registered voter. If there are more than two nominees for a position, a voice vote will be taken and the two candidates receiving the most votes will be placed on the ballot.

Registered voters who are interested in serving in an elected position but are unable to be nominated at the Town Caucus may request town nomination papers from the Town Clerk. This year nominees will be required to collect the signatures of at least 26 registered Carlisle voters in order to be placed on the ballot as a nominee candidate. Monday, March 16, 2009 at 5 p.m. is the deadline for submitting completed nomination papers to the Town Clerk. We recommend that candidates obtain significantly more than 26 signatures since often people will sign nomination papers without realizing that they are not registered voters.

If you have any questions about the Town Caucus, nomination papers, open positions or anything related to these matters, contact the Town Clerk at 1-978-369-6155 or by email at

Charlene M. Hinton

Town Clerk

Survey Team says thanks

To the Editor:

The Board of Selectmen and the Survey Team thank the 1558 of you who responded to the Town Needs Survey this month. Because of you, we had a turnout that exceeded a non-presidential year voter turnout by more than 50% and represents over 40% of the adult population of the town. You have done your part and now we will do ours by reporting the results and proposing ways to address needs that are currently not being met.

The fact that so many of you responded indicates that there is real interest in this town in having a say in how we do things and making our town the best possible place to live. On the “Comments Page,” one response was “I love living here!” Kinda sums it up, doesn’t it?

Thank you all. And thanks also to Ferns, Town Hall and the Gleason Public Library for allowing us to have drop boxes there.

The Carlisle Town Needs Survey Team:

John Ballantine, Alan Cameron,

Jim Elgin, Verna Gilbert, Kathy Mull, Camelia Rosca

Regarding the Billerica power plant

To the Editor:

With respect to the proposed power plant in Billerica: since 1980, the number of people in Carlisle has increased by 66% and the number of housing units has increased by 70%. I do believe “We have met the enemy, and he is us.”

Mike Hanauer

Member, Carlisle Climate Action

Long Ridge Road

A solution to deer overpopulation

To the Editor:

I’d like to take a moment to thank Sylvia Willard for hosting Patricia Huckery, division manager from Mass Fish and Game here in Acton, and all the residents who attended the morning of February 11. The forum started with Ms. Huckery talking about the elusive cougar that has been seen roaming our local towns. Sylvia read from a letter, presumably from a resident, of one such sighting which sounded amazing.

The conversation soon shifted to a topic discussed at last year’s meeting – deer. (See Mosquito article 2/15/08). Ms. Huckery stated that the town of Carlisle has three times the manageable level of deer. Eight to ten deer per square mile is considered manageable. We have 30 to 35 deer per square mile. The cougar would be a great predator for the deer but since we have no photographic evidence that it truly exists, I guess our automobiles will have to continue to be the next best thing.

We come together as a town to discuss all kinds of issues, budget, housing and school. With deer being one of the largest transporters of deer ticks, has this not become a potential health issue for the spread of Lyme disease? We need to consider options for controlling this problem. I believe we should consider opening conservation and town-owned land for controlled and managed hunting with emphasis on “controlled and managed.”

Stephen Keele

Curve Street

Some survey suggestions from a non-senior

To the Editor:

Here it is, one day before the collection deadline of the survey and I have yet to turn mine in. I was quite happy to receive an official survey for the town because it seems perfectly sensible to me that a regular assessment of the needs of town residents be commissioned.

I was, however, a little bewildered by the relatively limited scope of the questions in the survey. Few if any addressed my concerns as a parent of young children; indeed, almost every question seemed to be focused on quality of life issues facing our older population. While I certainly wouldn’t dismiss the needs of an entire segment of our town, I wonder if there were any parents of young or school-aged children helping to create that survey? Where were the questions about school services, playgrounds, after-school programs, etc? I am aware that a giant school budget deficit exists. Where were the questions regarding some of those hard choices in our future?

So, my husband and I completed our surveys side by side, scratching our heads. I am 38 years old. I am exhausted at the end of a day caring for a three year old and a 23 month old. I can barely think about planning my next trip to Costco, let alone where I want to retire. My answers on that survey are barely valid because the questions were clearly not meant for someone in my stage of life.

It may have been an “official town survey,” but if anyone is game to create a survey that attempts to capture the needs of our whole population, I would be truly happy to serve on that committee.

So, if the survey really hopes to uncover the needs of town residents, here are mine:

1. Early morning hours at the Transfer Station on at least one weekday. Ten a.m. is practically mid-day for some of us.

2. An on-line community for our town that allows busy people to participate in town “meetings,” surveys, focus groups etc.

3. A new picnic table in the playground at Diment Park. The old one was removed last summer after a bench broke and splintered dangerously.

Yes, #3 serves only a small part of the population, so I was thinking that maybe through an on-line community (#2) we could find a Boy Scout troop (maybe even someone needing an Eagle Scout project) to make a great new picnic table.

Alyson Balazy

Prospect Street

Valentine thanks

To the Editor:

The Carlisle COA recently held our third Annual Valentine Luncheon, Tea, and Concert at Union Hall at FRS church serving almost 70 seniors. We want to thank all those who made this day such a special event for our seniors. First of all, a tremendous amount of gratitude to Verna Gilbert and all her helpers who set up, get the food, prepare, serve, and clean up. This takes a lot of time and work especially when you are serving so many people each month. A special “thank you” to all the volunteers who lent us their lovely tea pots, silver trays, and other serving pieces and also brought goodies. A wonderful group of Daisys in Troop # 72677 led by Leaders Lynn Brady, Amy Jolly, and Theresa Lober, made very festive Valentine favors filled with all kinds of goodies. This was such a nice gesture and everyone loved them! Another special thank you to Norma Read who not only brought many lovely serving pieces, but also baked an abundance of cookies. One of our “younger” volunteers Leslie Thomas came to help put out cups and saucers, helped decorate, and assisted with serving. Town Administrator, Madonna McKenzie also pitched in as she usually does and helped us serve the seniors. Thank you both. We are also very grateful to our wonderful Friends of COA who funded the delicious desserts at this luncheon. They also funded the incredible concert by a string trio led by violinist Peter Krysa from Indian Hill Orchestra. We are grateful for all who made this once-a-year event so enjoyable for so many people.

Kathy Mull

COA Director

Housing Authority update on Benfield development

To the Editor:

The Carlisle Housing Authority (CHA) is proceeding with Phase III (Permitting) of the Benfield senior housing development which will include some major milestones over the next few weeks:

On Thursday, February 26, the CHA hosted a public meeting where NOAH, our first-ranked development team, presented their proposal for 26 rental units (one- and two-bedrooms) on the Benfield property.

At 7:45 p.m. on Monday, March 9, the CHA will introduce the NOAH team and its proposal to the Planning Board.

On March 10, the CHA will officially introduce the NOAH team and its proposal to the Board of Selectmen. At this meeting, it will request BOS formal sponsorship of the Benfield Project as a Local Initiative Program. This is a major milestone and a key requirement prior to submitting a full design to the Zoning Board of Appeals, as well as a precursor to applying for state and federal funding.

The Benfield Senior Housing project is very important to the town for many reasons, including:

Pressing Housing Need: There are currently 51 Carlisle residents/affiliates on the waiting list for this project. Senior housing provides alternatives and flexible opportunities for “rightsizing” your home, making existing homes available for families, and giving choice to seniors who may not be able to afford to stay in town otherwise. Many of the town residents on this list are long-time (35 years plus) taxpayers. They are regularly calling the Housing Authority to tell them that “they are counting the months until they can move in.”

Chapter 40B protection: Once the Benfield Senior Housing project applies for and receives a ZBA permit, Carlisle will then have a two-year moratorium on unwanted 40B projects.

Sound Use of Town Investments and “New Growth:” The town has already made a major investment in land and infrastructure funding for this planned senior housing. Construction and future operating costs will not be town-funded; the Housing Authority has planned this project to use outside funding sources and independent property management. This senior housing development with its outside investment will also bring much needed “new growth” to the town.

Residents are encouraged to attend these public meetings as well as to contact the Board of Selectmen to indicate your continuing support for this project.

Alan Lehotsky

Chairman, Carlisle Housing Authority

Citrus Sale a success

To the Editor:

The members of the Carlisle Concert Band and Middle School Choir wish to thank you for supporting the Winter Citrus Sale. We are thrilled to announce that over 500 boxes and bags of fruit were sold this year. In addition, we are extremely appreciative of the many online orders and generous donations. Thanks to your generosity, the funds raised will contribute to new repertoire, instrument purchase and repair and travel expenses.

The fruit will be delivered the week of February 23. Please call Cathy Poirier at 1-978-371-9139 with any questions.

We hope you enjoy the fruit. Thank you so much for supporting the Carlisle music programs.

The members of the Carlisle Concert Band and Middle School Choir

Deana Saada-Smith and

Megan Fitzharris Harlow, Directors

Host a Romanian student this summer

To the Editor:

Give your family a wonderful cross-cultural experience this summer… and offer a promising young East European the same! Nothing brings the world closer to home than a friendship with someone from abroad. Educational Enrichment for Romanian Children (EERC), a small local non-profit, seeks host families for four Romanian middle-school girls for one month this summer. Families should be within a reasonable commute of camp locations in Lexington/Concord, Maynard, Winchester, or Easton. The girls will attend summer camps at Middlesex School (in Concord, with bus service from Lexington) and College Academy (sites in Winchester, Maynard, Easton). They are ages 12-15, speak English, and were chosen in a competitive process for their exceptional personal and academic qualities. If you’d like to find out more, or to apply, please contact Michelle Ciurea at href=""> Can’t host but would like to help? A tax-deductible donation – by check or online – will be much appreciated and will help cover the girls’ airfares, visas, insurance and other expenses. Please see our website at for more info about a wonderful opportunity to bring the world closer to home.

Camelia Rosca

Brook Street

© 2009 The Carlisle Mosquito