LIVE BLOG: Framingham Town Meeting - Night 2

Editor's Note: If you tweet about Town Meeting, please use #FraminghamPatch and #FramTM14

Tonight is night 2 of the 2014 Annual Framingham Town Meeting.

Editor's Note: If you tweet about Town Meeting, please use #FraminghamPatch and #FramTM14

It is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m. or when a quorum is reached.

Framingham Patch will be live blogging. (Please excuse typos.)

Moderator trying to get started at 7:35 p.m. but there is a lot of noise and lot of Town Meeting members are still trying to check in.

New Town Meeting members are asked to leave phone and email contact at the check in desk.

Moderator welcoming everyone back ... "sooner we get started the sooner we will finish."

New Town Meeting members were elected tonight -- Moderator reading the names.

Moderator says there are several Town Meeting members who still need to be sworn in.

Town Meeting meets every Tuesday-Wed-Thursday evening until the warrant is finished.

"My job to keep the discussions civil and on topic" says Moderator.

Moderator -- committee organization - precinct meetings - next Wednesday, May 7.

Standing committee meetings will be held on May 14.

7:45 p.m. Personal Privledge - Kevin Crotty speaking - to apologize to the chair of Ways & Means for a statement he made the first night


Jeff Cox - Town Meeting member (TMM) 4 precinct - chair of veterans council -- introduce new Veterans Council members

Cox -- veterans in hall asked to stand.

Cox speaking on the new Veterans Council.


Article 8 - motion made by CFO - Town Meeting authorize or re-authorize several revolving funds for the fiscal year beginning July 1 2015.

CFO reading each fund and its purpose ...

Pass on Apartment pre-Inspectional Fund

Framingham Town Manager Bob Halpin speaking -- background on the pre-occupancy inspectional fund will work.

From Housing Plan in 2007
Two goals -- diverse range of housing units in Framingham and to encourage neighborhood preservation.

43% is rental units.
livability of unit

Pre-occupancy rental inspectional -- rental units are sanitary, livable and inhabitable.

this can be proactive and is non intrusive as it will happen while the apartment is unoccupied.

Malden, Everett, Boston & Lowell had success with this program.

Tenants are assured it meets basic sanitary codes before they move in.

Landlords receive documents from inspector that the unit was in good condition.

benefits to municipality -- establishes a system program - to assure compliance before a tenant moves in. - Halpin.

Application fee is $75.
Re-inspection fee is $25.

8:03 p.m. set up as a revolving fund so it can be a self-sustaining program. Seeding it with a $50,000 expenditure.

Landlords like it -- they get a piece of paper - that it is in good shape.


Committee reports
FinCom - Dan Lampl speaking -- 6-0-0 in favor
Ways & Means chair - Audrey Hall speaking - 13-0-0 in favor

Public safety chair -- Kathie McCarthy - reviewing what happened and discussed at the meeting ...

Town Meeting member discussion
Herb Chasan - TMM4 -- request if speaking to disclose if you are a landlord.

Michael Cannon - TMM9 - not a landlord -- on the surface -- sounds like another revenue generating fee. how many complaints? how many apartments did we find failed to meet the state minimum? nervous - are we just creating more work?

Steven Ward - director of health - speaking - 8:11 p.m. - logged in 309 complaints - at least 2 inspections occur - and then additional inspections and hearings and court.

Numbers about 725 inspections.

Cannon folo question -- 2 inspections per dwelling unit?

Ward -- yes

Cannon - rise in opposition.

Richard Baritz - point of order- moderator did not ask who passed?

Peter Pleshaw speaking -- TMM11 speaking -- could management answer questions?

is this to be used by department over budget expenditures?
Who approves expenses from expenditures?
How much left over last year?

CFO is speaking .... accountant department reviews.

8:16 p.m.

Richard Baritz speaking - TMM17 speaking -- question for the Board of Health -- $25 a day since it has been rented.

Moderator -- This is not a conversation.

Baritz - penalty is discretionary - $25 a day.
I called Malden and they are $50 and $25 and not $100 and $25.
I wonder to whom it is non intrusive?

Halpin speaking - when met with Malden. $75 and $25 is closer to what the costs are. It is non-intrusive for a standpoint of a vacant - to do it when the property is vacant. Landlord gets a paper that says it was in compliance with codes. Very valuable - worthwhile insurance policy worth more than $100 when hey wound up in court.

Excellent tool for achieving our goal in Framingham.

Renee Faubert - TMM14 - stand to support this article and concept. Great tool used by the town, landlords and tenants.

Gloria Geller - TMM2 - speaking - rise to support this article

We have a very high rental % - keep it clean, and apporpriate as possible.

Maureen Dunne - TMM9 - speaking - in support - it is long overdue.
# of properties affected by this.
Lots of properties rental - you can see for rent signs on homes.

This affects all of our neighborhoods in town.
It decreases our property values.
Ask you to support this.

Improve the livability of the neighborhoods in town.
It is needed in this town.

Lloyd Kaye - TMM10 - speaking - I'm undecided on this article.
Does this pertain too 4 units or more or does it pertain to all homes too?

Ward said -- 3 or more dwelling units.

8:28 p.m. Kaye - how address units 3 or less?

Mike Hugo - chair of the Board of Health -- speaking - as the program rolls out -- experience in Malden and Everett some have 1000s of units.

Haberman - motion to move the question.
Moderator says about 5-6 people still wanted to speak.
Hand vote -- question is moved.

First vote on this item - housing pre-inspection fund - Passed by hand vote.

Article 8 - Passed by hand vote. 1 hand in opposition

8:31 p.m. Article 10

CFO making motion -- transfer article.
Main part of this motion -- making adjustments to close out FY14.
salary reserve
$300,000 to police & fire to close out snow & ice
School - reimbursement - homeless transportation

Committee reports
FinCom chair speaking - Dan Lampl - 6-0-0 in favor
Ways & Means chair Hall speaking - 14-0-0 in favor

Dick Weader - chair of standing committee on education speaking -- $240,000 state reimbursement - of homeless transportation.
No vote on this article.

No discussion by TM members
Hand vote - PASSED

8:36 p.m.

Article 13 -- Kevin Crotty - TMM7 - making the motion - Litigation contigency fund - replenish funding - $150,000

FinCom chair speaking - Dan Lampl - main issue at hand was how much was needed - $150,000 - CFO - 8-0-0 in favor.

Amendment --

CFO -- amended budget bottom line to include $150,000 and not the $125,000.

Ways & Means - Hall report speaking -- 10-0-0 in favor - $150,000

Town Meeting member discussion - none

Vote - hand vote - PASSED - unanimously

8:45 p.m. Article 14 --

Point of order -- Kathy Vassar - slides on the screen are fuzzy

CFO speaking -- vote to approve collective bargaining
$52,500 in salary transfers

presentation on this article -- 10 minutes allotted

8:48 p.m. Fire deputy Chiefs -- 5 employees - 4 deputy chiefs and the fire marshall

roll in night differential and weekend premium into
reduce one personal day
buy back one vacation tour of 48 hours
this will help us reduce OT says CFO
clarifying education incentive -- master degree/management

financials -- FY14 -- $12.194
FY15 - $12,387
about 2% each year...

3-year change - 5.79%
Librarian contract -- HR director speaking on the 3 year contract
2, 1, and 1 percent increase over 3-years
take courses to become expertise in another language
encourage people to work evenings and summer
Establish an education committee -- to review education incentives

$41,000 - FY14
$38,00 - FY15
$17,00 - FY16

Parks & Rec supervisors - 8 employees
3-year term
2-1-1 COLA
adding a step 7
adding a step 8
double time on Christmas & Thanksgiving
Loring arena stipend on holiday
clothing allowance rolled into basic wages
Increase personal day from 1 to 2 days
7 p.m. and 7 a.m. Loring shift differentiate
conduct a compensation study.

Police superiors - 25 members of unit
COLA 1-2-1 per year

total change for 3 years - 4.38%

Committee reports
FinCom chair Lampl speaking -- 7-0-0 in favor
Ways & Means chair - Hall speaking - 13-1-0 vote on each unit individually.

Ways & Means -- overall supported 3 of the 4 agreements
Concerns with the parks & rec contract - 7 of the 8 are at the top step.
issue & concern -- add a step when the majority add a top step.
send a message -- not the will of Town Meeting to continually add steps.

there is a point that as a municipal employee you max out.

If Town Meeting choose not to support an agreement - then they go back to the table - TM has the ultimate say on a contract. - Hall speaking.

Ways & means voted in favor of the 3 other agreements
0-12-2 against Parks & Recreation agreement.

9:03 p.m. Town Meeting members to speak

Kevin Crotty - TMM7 - Retired town employee - I rise and I look at the vote by Ways & Means - which I don't like ...

My feeling they should all pass - Crotty

Michelle Smith - TMM12 - speaking -- question of HR - point of clarification? Do we participate in salary surveys to see if we are competitive?

Dolores Hamilton - HR director speaking -- yes, we do participate in surveys.

supervisors in this group do not get OT.
out in storms that last 72 hours

Patrick Dunne - TMM9 - speaking -- question - do we automatically get 1 step per year? performance evaluation?

9:10 p.m.
Hamilton speaking - it is dependent on performance evaluation

Dunne - comment - parks & rec does an amazing amount - should be recognized.

Renee Faubert - TMM14 - question -- were the contracts bargained collectively?

Halpin speaking -- all voted independently

Gerry Bloomfield -- TMM1 -- move to table article 14 until article 15-21 is voted until the financial overview of report.

9:14 p.m. Moderator - says 2/3 vote needed

Hand vote -- amendment - does not pass - tabling failed.

9:16 p.m.

Motion to move the question - not debatable.
hand vote -- hand vote -- PASSED

9:18 p.m. Motion on Ways & Means
Vote each item seperately - votes yes
Hand vote - moderator says passed.

Town Meeting members questioned it - now electronic vote

9:20 p.m. - issue that some Town Meeting members never turned on their machines.

So now a re-vote.

Point of order - Kathy Vassar - asked for the screens to go slower as the screens are blurry.

second electronic vote --

Point of order -- Rosemary TMM18

Motion fails -- 67 in favor

CFO motion --- requires a majority vote.
Hand vote -- passed.
moderator says about 10 hands in opposition
9:26 p.m.

Point of order -- Gerry Bloomfield - will will be getting a financial overview of the town?

Moderator - during the budget not during capital projects

Article 16 - CFO motion - capital improvements article. - $14 million
Presentation and then the reading of the list ...

9:35 p.m

9:50  p.m. 
Bill McCarthy chair of capital budget committee speaking

We don't create the list but we do review it
Only a few controversial items
New fire engine -- replace concord street -10 years old
Manufacturer out of business
Unfortunate situation
4-3 in favor

Mary dennison park -- safety and environmental conditions -- the park is safe

7-0-0 in favor 5-0 $60,000

4 million highest ever recommended
For specific roads
Cost $1 million a mile

Traffic calming -- vote to defer until next year ... Want to see what happens with first

0-7-0 to defer

$1 million new trash barrels
4 new trash trucks
Recycling has been private company
Contracts expires June 2016
July 2015 start trash

Recycling fills up easily in 2 weeks
Recycling will be weekly
Town could do weekly cheaper than contractor

School technology -- $950000
School build into operating budget a technology budget

10:02 pm ... 1-4-0 for. $950,000 to keep at $500,000

There were 144 town meeting members present for night 2

Motion to adjourn - PASSED
10:03 pm

Editor's Note: Updated on May 1 at 8:50 p.m. to fix a couple of Town Meeting member's last names.


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