LIVE BLOG: Framingham Town Meeting: Night 3

Tonight is night 3 of Framingham Town Meeting.

Meeting should start at 7:30 or when a quorum is reached.

Framingham Patch is live blogging.


7:32 p.m. a quorum has been reached.

Moderator is asking for Town Meeting members to take their seats. She is asking Town Meeting members to turn off their cell phones too.

Re-starting with the capital projects article - Article 16

Test question -- electronic voting

Are the Bruins going to win tonight?

VOTE: 75-8-17


7:42 p.m.

Finance Committee report - Betty Funk speaking

Bill McCarthy - chair of capital budget committee made presentation last night

Funk - 8 items disagreed

Mary Dennison - not enough
Traffic calming - A16O
Curbside carts
DPW trucks - phase 2 of refuse collection - discussion - ultimately 5-1-1 for carts 5-0-2 for the trucks.

A16AC - new tech upgrades schools -- complicated for us -- at first working with $500,000 but then now $950,000

Had concern about this and little documentation
In the end 7-0-0 in support of that ...

Concerns - fairly simple -- closing of the gap in technology.
Felt honor bound to support the item
left unanswered our concerns about capitalization policy

Gave some thought - if we took money out of capital budget and put it into the operating budget - increase the gap -
heavy discussion on this issue.
accept the fact that towns are different than the private sector.

Did not vote for a16AO -0-6-1 - a truck
thought they could wait until next year

Discussed space study at Danforth & Annex -- A16UV
voted 7-0-0

Traffic calming - defer that until we hear how the first year went.

7:50 p.m.
Ways & Means chair Audrey Hall speaking -
Replacement of the Fire Truck - American LaFrance - been in business since 1853 - closed doors in January 2014.
We supported the replacement.

Traffic calming -- meetings & discussion - committee did not see the need to wait to see how the first project went. See traffic calming proven in other communities - so willing to move forward with project #2.

Support schools in change of operating to capital for technology

saw no need to remove anything - support the capital budget in its entirety 13-0-0

Dick Weader - chair of Education Committee speaking
Existing security system is obsolete for the library - can't get parts for it. - cost for new program $194,560
Vote in favor 6-0-0

16AC - $950,000 technology upgrades -- supported.

16AD - king school elevator -- $400,00 - voted in favor to replace it.

$4 million school projects -- 10-0-0 favorable.

Kathie McCarthy - public safety committee chair speaking
3 fire budget items

16A - new fire engine -- $570,981 - most used fire engine - located at 520 Concord St. Company built it went out of business - use Engine 5 as spare parts. Favorable action -- unanimous vote 10-0-0

16B - Phase 2 - protective clothing replacement - safety item
$113,360 -- committee supports this -- unanimous vote in favor.

16C - signal pick-up truck -- $57,695 cost -- favorable action -- unanimous 10-0-0

A16AR - technology services - fire mobile data upgrade - favorable action recommended by public safety committee.

8:05 p.m.

Police item -- Phase 2 emergency generator for police station -- $349,000. 8-0-0- in favor. -- A16K

Point of order -- Pillsbury asked speaker to identify how related to police.

McCarthy - grown-up son who is a police officer for Framingham

Dennis Paulsen - chair of DPW committee speaking -- switch to automated trash system
A16AA - $1 million new barrels
A16AB - $1,337,440 million - 4 new trucks
employees - workmen's comp should go down drastically
at end of night -- 8-0-0- in favor.

8:10 p.m. Reading of the list - Town Meeting members may pass on items to be discussed.


Gerry Bloomfield -- point of order - had a question on the total amount.

Question on the CFO -- when will the bonded money will be spent - which amount will be spent 6 months, vs 12 months vs next year.

Moderator -- CFO bonds as necessary - she gave an estimate. No need to go over.

What is the impact on a single family homeowner?
CFO -- not off top of head but will calculate while during discussion.

8:20 p.m. Editor's Note: At the end of the first period - Bruins down 1-0.

Electronic vote on all the non-passed items.
8:23 p.m. 124-4-0 Passed

Now take up each of the passed items individually

a16G -- $67,245 -- 6 year old truck
Seems to be buyers remorse on the truck -- TMM
low mileage -- are we buying something that will only be used for fewer years than bonding for.

Framingham Town Manager Bob Halpin - introducing the new Parks & Recreation director James Duane.

outstanding operations manager. Jim stood heads & shoulders - outstanding addition to the senior management team.

Duane speaking -- Pleasure to be there ... stop by and say hello.
the vehicle - excellent shape - 12,000 miles on it.
dedicated dump vehicle
opportunity - excellent use -- repurpose with J hook system
water tank - for beautification program

vehicle is used every day.
this vehicle is a 2005 with very low miles on it - has many many years of good use still. attachments still useable moving forward.

Ed Kross - TMM12 - concept for interchangable body parts -- this is a no brainer -- can use the truck elsewhere in town.
strongly urge you to support

VOTE -- a16G - 2/3rd vote needed - 122-2 passed.

A16J -- mary Dennison master plan & skate park feasibility

William LaBarge - TMM16 - speaking - he passed on it

Cost $60,000 - if feasibility study proves no skatepark could be built.

Halpin speaking -- appropriation required to access the environmental conditions at the playground.

Park constructed at site at a former landfill says Halpin.
MassDEP represents Avery Dennison as the responsible party - as dumping ground through the 1960s when the property was then conveyed to the town.

Needs to be completed before Feb. 27 - study of site. - Halpin

originally proposed $40,000 and then increased to $60,000.


Bob Bolles - TMM6 - speaking -- before we even start spending money for feasibility -- who is going to take on the liability - lawsuits??

Halpin -- Environemental assessment & community needs -- required under MassDEP - needs to be done -- lionshare of this is an environmental assessment of the site.

Liability - soil sent sent out -- park does not represent a safety risk to the park.

Bolles - wants to discuss pros and cons of skatepark.

Moderator - says no need to discuss that.

Point of order -- George Lewis -- committee report for this item -- community services.

Moderator - says have to wait.

Judith Grove - TMM15 -- motion for amendment -- $60,000 to $210,000 -- justification -- funds are not sufficient to accomplish the goals listed in this article.

On table -- handout -- includes report of what found at Mary Dennison park. Next is a report from MassDEP to Parks & Rec. William Robinson of NAACP wrote to attorney general - asking for environmental justice.

Presentation -- Grove.

Editor's Note: 2-0 Canadians

8:47 p.m.

I don't believe at $60,000 they can check all the issues. Children spent their lives at these parks said Grove.

Liability what has happened in the past at this park.
better not here the park is save unless then can proof it to us

Ann Sullivan - TMM8 - $60,000 is to fulfill the requirement of DEP on behalf of the town. Will we need additional funds?

Halpin -- get us to the point for a response action and we don't know what that is right now.

There is a 2-4 foot layer on top of the dump - the fill layer may need to be supplemented. Don't know that answer yet. Don't know what the impact is yet on Beaver Dam Brook.

This step we analysis the conditions - and then propose a response action - Halpin

Kathie McCarthy speaking - TMM10 -- for several years -- part of the community services standing committee -- Cushing Park is a phased in park -- on the south side.

I rise against the amendment -- need to keep our eyes open and not thrown an amount at an item. It is about being safe. Might slide into first but not taking up three feet when you slide into the base.

the amount was pulled out of the air

8:56 p.m. Kathy Vassar speaking - TMM1 - have concerns about Mary Dennison field and want to see it handled appropriately.

FinCom said they were concerned that the money might not be adequate. Looking for idea for what the difference could be?

Would town come back for additional funds if needed?

George Lewis - TMM18 - speaking -- rise in support in increase of $$$
It is long deserved due to efforts of Judith Grove.
Her effort that brought this to life and congrat her for her efforts.
It is very small money. Well deserved.

Point of order - Vassar -- asked question of FinCom.

Betty Funk - Fincom speaking -- $40,000 originally number - we then went to $60,000 -- conform to environmental protection laws.

9:02 p.m. Lloyd Kaye - TMM10 -- ask for slide of park be put up on the screen again?

17.5 acres -- 15 borings ... only 1-2 on the northern boundry.
One of the higher levels is on the northern testing site.
I think need more money - I would test along the northern border. I would add another 10-15 tests there.

9:03 p.m. Precinct 17 - original budget for the studies -- This is a need basis. Issue around since 1990 - ground up in the area. Trying to keep away from emotional points - feel neglected - the area in general. I'm seeing the points - $200,000 - support increase budget - study after study is not going to get us very far. There are volatile substances in the park. Action is needed.

Joel Winett - TMM7 -- speaking - heard the original proposal and the amendment.
What is the $60,000? or additional $150,00? does it cover the planning for the future use of the park? Benefits of the residents of the town.

Halpin - speaking - urge you to read the request justification which was changed in March. This article only assess the environmental conditions and better characterize the risk to the neighborhood - leading to a response that DEP will need to approve. Part of that response - future use of the park -

Winett - what will the additional $150,000 be used for?

Grove -- the idea of the funds - you will know what you have - and now plan of what to do with the park? 17 acre park. No swings. There is virtually nothing in this park. What are the children doing for the next year.

Gloria Geller - TMM2 - move the question
3 people still wanted to speak.
Hand vote - question moved

First vote -- higher amount motion by Grove -- Electronic vote
9;10 p.m. 44-78-6 FAILED

Motion on the $60,000 - needs a 2/3 vote -- electronic vote
VOTE: 124-3-2 PASSED

9:15 p.m.
A16K - emergency generator - phase 2 for the police station

Jake Bajekian - TMM11 - speaking - he passed on this
Asking questions -

Existing generator does not meet the loads of he building. This $350,000 meets the needs of the building and a little expansion. Part of procurement laws. I can't tell you which generator specifically we will purchase.
This is strictly an estimate.

Wiring system in the building is a disaster. - Paolini speaking

Patrick Dunne - TMM9 - speaking - it is more than just a generator - the key

Peter Pleshaw - TMM11 - speaking - 2 questions - new generator go in the same place - what happens to the old generator? Estimated time to have new generator up and going.

New generator is not going on the roof. Going with a new diesel generator and now a gas generator, which is currently there.

9:23 p.m.

Motion move question -- passed

A16m - western avenue fuel island
$16,100 -- be deleted - motion
Minimum item $25,000 - why less?

Establishing a bad precedent

Tmm10 Haberman motion

CFO speaking -/ project must be $25,000

Motion fails -- hand vote
Total - passes -- hand vote

9:29 pm
Gerry Bloomfield -tmm1
Taxes cost on this total capital projects

A16n - highway - $4 million

Peter sellers speaking --

Ted Anthony tmm1 - speaking
Schedule and locations
Saxonville -- bridge retaining wall on wTer street etc

Peter pleshaw -- in book $5.2 million but on green sheet $4 million -- what are we voting on

It is $4 million

Karl rookey Tmm speaking -- clearly maintenance is less expensive than re dos

Editor note 2-1 bruins

Move question -- passed

9:40 pm
Passed -- Hand vote -- yes

A16o traffic calming - $200,000 passed
Bill McCarthy chair if capital budget speaking
It is an annual $200,000 event

Editor note bruins tie 2-2

Gerry Bloomfield -- said looks like work not done -- what is the delay!!?

Project to be constructed this summer

Kathy vassar - rise to ask support of this article - multiple neighborhoods asking to slow the traffic down
Cars speeding through our residential neighborhoods

Peter sellers - understand committee need to see how first project completed

Patrick Dunne - tmm9 speaking -- committee prioritize -- dennison park no cross walks

William sedewitz -- chief engineer talking -- request brought to traffic committee -- going over process -- edmands road be completed this summer

Second project approved winch and mill wood at. 95% design

Third project in cue is beaver street

Betty muto. -- move question - passed

Motion to delay passed

A16w -- 9:50 pm sidewalk tractor

Cook speaking -- how many sidewalk plows?

Have 9 - put out 6 and 3 spares
Quite old
Sellers speaking

Frank demarco speaking -- tmm16
Why keep purchase??

Why need sidewalk plows??

152 miles of sidewalks plow 90 of them

Michelle smith tmm12 -- question
School do not open unless sidewalks plowed

Move the question
A16w - 5 in opposition

Motion to adjourn
Lloyd Kaye May 02, 2014 at 03:49 PM
The additional 150,000 for Mary Dennison Park is for a complete testing of the park...Only 15 borings is NOT enough in a 17 acre site..I think a more complete study would include at least 4 per acre or 68 total borings. Nearly all of the 15 borings on the existing map of the site--only 1 is near the northern boundry and that one indicated higher levels above safe for the public. It is short sighted, foolish, and will result in untold liability to the towns tax payers if a responsible testing does not take place. Its as if we are asking for further trouble by simply satisfying the short term requirement to test and report. We should be testing to DEFINE what enviromental issues are de facto in the park....and then to create a program to respond to solving that issue.....the 60,000 absolutly does NOT accomplish this....and to defend it is to defend a course that will do nothing to solve the long term issues or liabilities.


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