Daily Buzz | Water Ban Rolled Back, Conservation Measures Still Recommended
Also, government restructure conversations will continue
Good Morning, Burlington!
Tomorrow, the Presbyterian Church will be holding its monthly community meal. These free meals are an opportunity for community members to get together and meet/chat. This will be on the schedule for tomorrow; the meal occurs from 5:30-7:00 on the last Wednesday of every month.
Also, as a continuation of the Buzz’s election coverage, we just published a candidate profile on Kent Moffatt, incumbent running (unopposed) for Shawsheen School Committee. Read about Kent here and catch all other election information, interviews and profiles, at the Burlington Equity Coalition Elections Page.
Water Ban Rolled Back
At last night’s Select Board Meeting, lots was discussed:
The water ban from last year has been in effect all winter, and DPW Director Brian White appeared before the Board last night to request the full ban be rolled back to the standard every-other-day water conservation regulation we’ve been beginning each summer with lately. Some other details of note:
Phase 2A of the MWRA connection (3.5 million gallons per day) is currently expected to be done around the end of June. Phase 2B (6.5 MGD) is scheduled to be completed in 2025.
As part of the MWRA agreement, the town is required to (1) encourage and enforce water conservation measures and (2) prioritize our water source at Mill Pond. This means these every-other-day conservation measures will likely be in effect annually.
There will be an exception for new lawns; if you plan to install one, reach out to the DPW at (781) 270-1670.
April was named Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Month in Burlington. The Mama Bear Effect appeared to accept this proclamation.
The Sons of Italy were also recognized for their work with the town over the last 52 years.
We’ll be applying to the Massachusetts School Building Administration (MSBA) for funding once again to renovate or (hopefully) rebuild the high school. We are already working with the MSBA to build a new school on the Fox Hill campus.
Common Craft will be allowed to extend their patio into the artificial turf area in front of the current patio and add some games like cornhole or other lawn games plus some seating.
Smith & Wollensky plans to open May 10 on Middlesex Turnpike.
The police department has had some costly problems with their hybrid cruisers, and they’re currently impossible to get, and we’ll be going back to gas powered police vehicles.
Our mental health clinician, Karen DiRienzo, received 150 new referrals in 2022.
We have 2 vacancies on our Fire Department, 6 retirements coming up by fall, and some firefighters out with injuries. That means lots of overtime.
During the last few minutes of the meeting the Board discussed an idea that’s been circulating through our town government for at least the last five years: Should we, or should we not, look to restructure the government? Two ideas were proposed:
Assemble a Charter Review Commission to review the charter and make recommendations for adjustments to our current government structure (this would need to pass as a ballot measure with 15% of voters approving it, and then an elected 9-member commission would be formed with a firm end date to investigate and report.
Have an outside agency such as the Collins Center take a preliminary look.
Of note, there was a committee formed to look into this several years ago and they made a few recommendations—some of which were followed and some of which weren’t. I believe the slide show with these recommendations is in the public record. Ultimately, the Select Board decided to continue discussing and taking small steps toward making local government more efficient, recognizing the difficulty with filling current elected seats. More on this to come!
Today in Burlington
Meetings and Events
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM - Early Voting at Town Hall
12:00 PM - Tri-Ton Coalition Advisory Board - Health Dept will meet to discuss how they’ll organize and work together for the Public Health Excellence Grant that was awarded to Burlington, Lexington, and Wilmington this year. (Human Services Building at 61 Center Street)
4:30 PM - Shawsheen School Committee - Negotiation Subcommittee will discuss the Cafeteria and Clerical Union negotiations (Shawsheen Tech)
5:00 PM - Housing Partnership will discuss membership and meetings post-March as well as 119 S. Bedford Street. (Virtual)
6:00 PM - D&D For Beginners (Grades 4-8) (Register)
7:00 PM - Board of Health (Town Hall and virtual) will discuss a life science special permit and have a lot of restaurant/food service discussions, including:
Variances for fermenting yogurt for Al Maidah and Gourmet India
A variance for an external grease interceptor for Jamba Juice/Auntie Annie’s
A temporary suspension of food service permit for Life Time
Much, much more
7:00 PM - School Committee will pick up where the 3/14 meeting was supposed to, including with an update on the Equity Audit and a food service update. Lots more will be discussed, and you can find topics on the agenda by clicking the link above. (BHS and virtual)
Sports and Activities
Boys’ Volleyball hosts North Andover today, with JV playing at 3:30 and Varsity at 4:30.
That’s all I’ve got for you today. I hope you have a good one!