Sept 17, 2017

Waban Area Council

Meeting Minutes

September 14, 2017, 7:30pm

 

Members in Attendance: Joe Corkery, Sallee Lipshutz, Maureen Reilly Meagher, Chris Pitts, Isabelle Albeck, Rena Getz.

City attendees: John Rice, Brett Ferolito (NPD), T. Keefe (NPD), Brian Yates

Other attendees: Mariella Rutigliano, Braden Houston, Mariella, Bob Jampol, Dinah Bodkin

 

  1. MEETING CALLED TO ORDER AT 8:10 pm
     

  2. APPROVAL OF AUGUST 10, 2017 MEETING MINUTES: IA moves to approve the minutes. SL seconds. Unanimously approved.

 

  1. APPROVAL OF SEPTEMBER 14, 2017 TREASURER’S REPORT: RG reports that balance is $1659.53. Only payment was for PO Box. SL moves to approve. CP seconds. Unanimously approved.

 

  1. BURNING ISSUES:

    1. Demolition at 37 Radcliffe St that was done illegally and what penalty should be. IA reports that there is a $300 per day penalty as long as it is ongoing and that would be a zoning violation because they exceeded their permit. Notes that there today the gate was open and there was a big hole open to the basement as well which was a danger. It will go to Historical Commission next. IA states that she heard that ISD is more driven around compliance and as opposed to punishment. MRM notes that clearly punishment is insufficient as a deterrent. RG says that ISD is complaint-driven. Perhaps we can provide links to that information on our website. MRM some people might not be happy with that. People may not see this as a good thing that we have taken upon ourselves to do. Much more in favor of taking a serious bite into the penalties than making it easier to complain. IA problem is that planning doesn’t know how much has been approved by historic commission. RG this information is in the public domain and all we would be doing is making it linkable.

 

  1. DISCUSSION WITH BRETT FEROLITO, COMMUNITY OUTREACH OFFICER, NEWTON POLICE DEPARTMENT
     

  2. UPDATES:

    1. Staples-Craft - IA is requesting $600,000 for Phase 1 (of 3). BY do they have approvals from disabilities committee. IA no, because they need waiver for the whole building and for the use of just the first floor after the ramp so that they could get open. Phase 2 would include an elevator. IA felt that sentiment at the meeting was that it was a lot of money for not a lot of use by the public. There was a motion to not invite the proposal (5-0). Chairman said he was not interested, usually they give money to failing buildings with public access and not private buildings. BY did anybody raise that this was a historic building. MRM they went to mass historic for what they were proposing and there were not willing to give the tax credit. Pivot points were around community use and access. They could come back with another pre-proposal next year, but they were not encouraged. IA says that Alice were bombarded with emails about the property and there were many people in attendance opposed to it. MRM reports that John Yo had asked if Suzuki school had entered into a relationship with the Windsor Club. Answer was no.

    2. Waban Common - SL reports that they now have Waban Common Inc., and have applied for 501(c)3. But that may take months. So going to move the fundraiser to January 20 to ensure that people who make donations can take the tax deduction. Landscape architect is preparing a bird’s eye view. Going to plant trees in the Spring (beginning of May). Had originally planned for November but contractors wouldn’t commit to life of tree if planted in November. Trees will have been paid for through Angier tree plan. Still need a meeting with Parks & Rec.  IA says that every where she goes benches are always facing the walkway unlike in this plan. Going to be installing a hard end drip irrigation at the time the trees are going in. RG no fountain? SL the middle of the island is being left to the community to decide what will go there.

    3. Election Showcases - SL we need people to help on October 8 and October 22. Going to have all of the at-large candidates on stage at Angier and will be questioned by Andy Levin. CP is planning to video everything. We need publicity. BY be sure you get to Jerry Reilly for Upper Falls News. MRM were hoping to get the city to put notice on sandwich boards. SL has info from all the candidates listing their websites correctly. Want website info printed up and handed out to people that day. BY will there be a way to bring individual stuff. SL no, we’ve asked all candidates to leave campaign information at home. Name tags and placards need to be produced for both days. MRM thinks Upper Falls Council did it last time and volunteered to do it again. SL thinks we should have name tags as the home council. RG volunteered to do it. SL wants to print a table with candidates names and a place to put comments. Think we ought to have a program and need to provide paper for questions from the audience. MRM it would be useful to ask people what part of Newton where they are from. SL will need a sign in sheet. CP don’t think allowing random public questions is a good idea as it can lead to wasting precious time with off topic content as he has witnessed in other public forums. Instead, he suggests that we allow people to submit questions in advance, prior to the event via email or other, and during on notecards. The subcommittee will remove duplicates and collate into questions for the moderators. SL need to be there when doors open at 12:30 (10/8). Only one custodian and he needs help. CP can I get in there early? Video and audio production requires 2 hours in advance minimum. SL you need to communicate that to the school. Also need to be there at the end to stow the chairs and be greeters. Mostly the same needs for 10/22 meetings. Moderator for mayoral and school committee will be Marjorie Arons-Barron. John Katsulas will be the moderator for the Charter Commission debate. BY who is speaking on behalf of the Charter? SL they have not told me for either Yes/No positions.
       

  3. AREA COUNCIL ELECTION INFORMATION FOR NOVEMBER 7: SL reports that we may have 9 candidates running for WAC, but won’t know final numbers until after the 26th. Papers need to be notarized before submitting.

 

  1. NEW BUSINESS: IA states that in the winter the roof drips and the stone is crumbling. Waban Library is getting $300,000 in CPA funding. CP on the list three times for the roof, the bathroom, and something else. RG is there anything that we need to do? MRM don’t think there is consensus on the bathroom situation. Could ask Josh to get a status report on the building condition.
     

  2. ANNOUNCEMENTS:

 

On November 7, you may vote on two ballots: the Municipal Election Ballot which will have a place for you to choose:

 

1) a mayor

2) at-large councilors city-wide

3) a ward councilor

4) at-large city-wide school committee members.

You will also be able to choose to accept or reject the Proposal for a Revised Newton City Charter. In addition, you may choose up to nine Waban Area Councilors by asking for the Area Council Ballot which is separate from the Newton Municipal Election Ballot.
 

  1. ADJOURN: SL moves to adjourn. JC seconds. Meeting adjourned at 9:35 PM.

 

Next meeting will take place on October 12, 2017 at 7:30 PM.

 

Adjourn.   

 

Respectfully submitted,

Joe Corkery

 

Meeting Date: 
Thursday, September 14, 2017 - 7:30pm