Monday, March 31, 2008
Was it last week, this week or next month or weather-permitting?
Verizon and the Middleboro BOS
Verizon: Your Cheatin' Heart .....
Verizon: Your Cheatin' Heart .....#2
Verizon: Never Take No for an Answer!
Can you hear me now? Verizon says No!
Verizon: Still Not Listening?
Sunday, March 30, 2008
Monday, March 31, 2008
A. SELECTMEN’S MINUTES
March 3, 2008 and March 24, 2008
B. HEARINGS, MEETINGS & LICENSES
7:05 PM Health Officer Discussion re Massage Regulation issue and
Kevin Murphy’s Installer permit – owes municipal fees
7:15 PM Public Hearing Class II Auto Application
7:30 PM Executive Session
C. NEW BUSINESS
1. Approve appointment of Bridgewater Permanent Police Officers as Special Police Officers.
2. Request Permission for Tag Fund Raising Dates.
3. Request from Sacred Heart Parish for One-day All Alcoholic Beverages Liquor license.
4. Request from Rocky Meadow Development Corp. for one-year extension for E.R. Permit.
5. Town Hall Rental Request – MA Highway Public Hrg. Re Rte 44 Intersection.
6. Discuss ATM/STM Warrant Articles.
7. Surplus Equipment for dump disposal.
D. OLD BUSINESS
E. TOWN MANAGER’S REPORT
F. SELECTMEN’S BILLS
I. EXECUTIVE SESSION
Pending Litigation/Collective Bargaining
MEETING WILL BE HELD AT TOWN HALL
10 NICKERSON AVENUE
School district energy savings plan coming to fruition
GateHouse News Service
Posted Nov 07, 2007 @ 10:25 PM
The school district’s energy program is conserving electricity and saving considerable money, district Energy Manager Matthew Stellar told the School Committee Tuesday.“We hope to achieve a savings of 25 percent over the current year,” he said. “We’re currently on pace for that.”Over the past seven months, the district has realized a $570,000 savings for utilities, Stellar said. The district spent $2.7 million on utilities, but would have had to spend $3.2 million without the energy program. Taunton Gazette
- Energy costs are second only
to salaries for many school
- About 30% of energy used is
“waste” energy, from system
- Low-cost measures can reduce
energy bills by 10% or more;
other investments can yield 25-
-10% of a government agency’s
operating budget is spent on energy
- About 30% of energy used is “waste”
energy, from system inefficiencies
Saturday, March 29, 2008
This year is an exception that has forced some to consider the office and its responsibilities.
As a taxpayer, you are presented with an opportunity to elect an experienced Assessor to the Board of Assessors who is willing to offer professional expertise to serve the Town.
The choice seems simple.
The following statement was offered by Mr. Charles Barry Shea:
My name is Charles Shea and I’m a candidate for Assessor of Middleborough.
My wife and I bought a piece of land in 2000 and built our house with the help of Al Gamache the following year.
Ted Eayrs, on candidates' night, asked me if I wanted to “micro-manage” the office. No. I don’t.
I do want to bring some of my varied, out of town, experience to the department. I’ve worked with their appraisal software since 1982 in numerous towns. I’m helping install it this year in Rochester. I’ve been the Assessor’s contractor in Rochester since 1988. I’ve valued Tony Sol’s pig farm. I’ve appraised Semass’s land. I did revaluations in New Braintree and Oakham. I know “rural”. I appraised the Swansea Mall, The Chatham Bars Inn and P’Town’s commercial real estate. I reviewed the Prudential and Hancock Towers. I know resorts and I know high values. I reviewed the entire town of Mashpee in 1982. I believe Middleborough can benefit from my experience.
I’m a proponent of “quarterly tax billing”. It’s financially sound and fiscally responsible. I’m also a proponent of a July 1 assessment date for new construction. The “growth”, the new tax dollars as a result of this new construction, becomes part of the levy limit base a year earlier. Both of these aspects increase revenue dollars. They require no new personnel and no additional effort.
I’m a proponent for Elderly Exemptions. These folks have paid full taxes for years. Many are now on low, fixed incomes. Their kids are long out of school. I have supported increasing the state recommended exemption amounts. I have supported expanding the thresholds for income and assets, allowing more elderly to qualify and giving them a bigger break. The younger families in town understand and approve.
I maintain an excellent relationship with Army Master Sergeant Joe Colantoni, a veteran’s agent with whom I, as a Deputy Assessor, work. He knows how I feel about our veterans.
I look forward to serving the Town of Middleborough as their elected assessor. I assure each and every taxpayer of my efforts on their behalf to increase the efficiency and enhance the effectiveness of the department.
Charles B. Shea
PBS offered the following NOW program with video on its site:
Save Energy, Save Money, Save the Planet
Friday, March 28, 2008
Some of the information has been posted on nemasket because of greater space available:
Department of Revenue Report
Quarterly Tax Billing
Thursday, March 27, 2008
$120m revenue loss over 3 years fuels critics' call for cuts to program
By Todd Wallack
Globe Staff / March 27, 2008
Encouraged by a bundle of new tax incentives, dozens of movie and television directors have flocked to the Bay State in the past year - bringing actors like Kevin Spacey, Cameron Diaz, and Matthew McConaughey to the area for filming. But stardom has its price.
more stories like this
According to a report by the Department of Revenue, the tax incentives have cost the state $119 million to $120 million in lost tax revenue over the past three years, which could give new ammunition to critics of the tax incentives and may force the state to cut back on other spending. The analysis comes at a time when the state faces a $1.3 billion budget deficit that could make it a challenge to fund the tax breaks.
"Government should stop playing favorites with various industries," said Barbara Anderson, the executive director of the Center for Limited Taxation and a longtime crusader for smaller government in the state. "This is about politicians rubbing elbows with Hollywood celebrities."
But the report also suggests the film productions have generated $545 million in direct spending from 88 productions, which supporters say has given a major boost to the local economy and outweighed the cost of the tax breaks. The report also cited employment data that indicated the state has created hundreds of jobs in the motion picture and video industries.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Rising energy costs are sucking the vitality out of the economy and Middleboro's budget.
Any discussion of improving the local economy or the Massachusetts economy needs to consider what others are doing.
There's revenue to be generated in local green projects, local green businesses and attracting those businesses, coupled with conservation.
Taunton Schools saved ~ $500K with energy conservation alone. What could Middleboro accomplish?
The following is an assortment of energy and environment related articles:
Green Towers In Malaysia Modeled After Fleet Of Ships
Slab of Antarctic ice shelf collapses amid warming
Low Impact Living.com Launches Groundbreaking Household Environmental Impact Calculator & Rating System
The tool also provides is insight into the economics of green projects.
TOKYO (Reuters) - Sharp Corp will spend close to 100 billion yen ($882.9 million) to build the world's largest solar cell factory in Japan, Chairman Katsuhiko Machida was quoted by the Nikkei business daily as saying.
The plant will be built next to Sharp's LCD panel factory currently under construction in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture.
It will produce thin-film solar cells, which use less silicon than conventional cells, starting in fiscal 2009, the Nikkei said in its Saturday edition.
Town of Middleborough
HMO Blue New England Plan
Blue Care Elect (PPO)
Medex 3 with Obra
Managed Care for Seniors
'Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.' Margaret Mead
In Europe, where the disparity doesn't exist, alternatives are feasible for the homeowner, growing in popularity and outstripping US installations.
Towns see big savings in wind
The proposed regulations would allow the owners of large turbines to be credited for excess electricity they generate at the price they would pay on the retail market.
It is known as net metering, and Downey believes it will be included in the bill.
Here's how it works:
The maritime academy, for example, pays the retail price, 17 cents per kilowatt-hour, for any electricity it needs beyond that generated by the wind turbine,
'Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.' Margaret Mead
Monday, March 24, 2008
Since you've been following my posts for some time, you're aware of my interest in ALTERNATIVE ENERGIES. If you examine the employment numbers, job creation, local installation, manufacturing and so on, the numbers are impressive.
Mon Mar 24, 2008 at 12:15:16 PM EDT
(McLaughlin-style PREDICTION: CLEAN ENERGY IS THE DOT COM OF THE 2010'S!! 'Cause, like, we hardly have a choice.
BTW, here's the OpenMass.org link to the legislation in question. - promoted by Charley on the MTA)
(my first post!)
With the Cape Wind hearings being over, and recent posts about "What's Next?" it might be time for a what's next on Global Warming, which is going to be given a huge push at Massachusetts Power Shift , April 11-14 in Boston.
At the beginning of March, the State Senate (in closed door session) passed the Global Warming Solutions Act , which would cap Mass greenhouse gas emissions 20% by 2020 and 80% by 2050. We overcame the voices of hesitation and polluting industry, but the fight rolls on to the House...
Getting a GHG cap passed in the Commonwealth should be the first goal to move us further down the path to sustainability and towards legislation to achieve those goals. To get this job done, young people from across the state are organizing Massachusetts' largest ever climate event in Boston, April 11-14.
Mass Power Shift is going to have tons of workshops (which aren't posted online yet) run by organizations ranging from 1Sky, Environment Massachusetts and the League of Conservation Voters to the MIT Sloan School, Massachusetts Coalition for Healthy Communities, Sustainnovation and Clean Power Now. Keynote speakers confirmed so far include James Woolsey, former CIA director, and Congressman Ed. Markey. They'll be local strategy sessions and lobby training, and a rally/concert on the Common.
We'll, of course, be finishing off the weekend with a lobby day to help get the Global Warming Solutions Act through the House. So come over and check us out, and register. This is what's next.
MoBeach42 :: What's Next for Climate Change?
Sunday, March 23, 2008
The following positions are contested:
Board of Selectmen vote for two:
Marsha Brunelle, incumbent
School Committee vote for two:
Paul Hilton, incumbent
Joseph Masi, Jr, incumbent
Board of Assessors vote for one:
The first question pertained to how many times each candidate had attended town meetings.
Other than criticizing me anonymously, I'm not hearing any ideas from you.
Included was a Channel Lineup EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 2007.
Within that lineup were Local Programming channels.
You don't currently provide those channels in Middleboro.
The following Boston Globe article represents the recent experience in Duxbury at attempts to pass a Prop 2 1/2 override. You will note that the portion that passed was the Capital Exclusion:
Duxbury voters reject one override, pass two others
A. Selectmen's Minutes 3/17/08
B. Hearing, meetings, licenses
7:05 Conservation Commission
C. New Business
1. Approve and sign warrant for Annual Town Election
2. Vote to appoint a member of Board of Registrars
3. Request from Middleboro Youth Softball League for placement of sign on Town Hall lawn
4. Request for MYSL for Board to publicly announce date of league's 2008 Opening Day
D. Old business
1. Public announcement re: Community Outreach Emergency Preparedness
E. Town Manager's Report
F. Selectmen's Bills
I. Executive Session
Pending litigation/Collective Bargaining
Saturday, March 22, 2008
What is often observed is that by listing ideas, considerations become self-limiting.
You might consider a number of the comments found on BMG.
Friday and Saturday at 7:30 PM
Sunday 10 AM
Wednesday and Thursday 7 PM
I'm sure that the times will be broadcast on channel 9 tomorrow for confirmation.
Corrections appreciated if others recorded different times.
Middleboro has the opportunity to become the distribution hub on the South Shore, but is too stupid to see the opportunity.
the anonymous poster omitted that Middleboro also has a freight rail line.
School staff members followed normal procedures by notifying the Department of Social Services of the possible abuse, Sullivan said. Enterprise
We have posted an Excel spreadsheet on the Municipal Databank website with the amounts for each city, town and regional school district. The spreadsheet is available for downloading at:
All other Cherry Sheet programs will be subject to debate as the House and Senate prepare their budget proposals. The House Ways and Means Committee is scheduled to release their version of the budget in April and the Senate version will be available in May.
Updated preliminary Cherry Sheet estimates to reflect the amounts contained in the resolution will be posted on the DLS website early next week. However, all other program estimates will remain blank until the House and Senate budget proposals have been released. For these accounts, the Governor's Budget estimates represent the best available numbers for budget planning purposes. Please be aware that these other estimates will likely change as the state budget process unfolds.
If you need additional information, please contact Lisa Juszkiewicz, Jared Curtis or Donnette Benvenuto at 617-626-2384.
The Agenda isn't posted on the Town's Web Site, does anyone know what's on the Agenda?
Friday, March 21, 2008
Well, Striper, since you put this front and center, let me comment further.
Thursday, March 20, 2008
Middleboro is undergoing fiscal problems created by poor historical decisions.
Today’s sound-byte is ‘REVENUE’ with little consideration or facts.
I would suggest instead, that what is labeled REVENUE, should be considered:
1. Lost opportunities
2. Costs Savings
3. Lost Revenue
4. Misspent funds
The other candidates speak of attracting new businesses, yet ignore the Office Park at South Pointe that Middleboro opposed in court . When the developer prevailed in court, his tenants were gone.
Middleboro has missed other opportunities and discouraged other clean businesses.
You might not label spending money wisely and getting the biggest bang for your buck as REVENUE and it’s not exciting, but the results are the same.
Recently, I requested a copy of the WAGE COMPARISONS that were used during recent contract negotiations.
The response I received was that NONE existed.
How do you negotiate contracts if you don’t know what comparable towns are paying?
Municipal wages are widely posted and publicly available.
Can Middleboro taxpayers afford to pay for 90% of town employees’ health benefits while other towns only pay 60%?
The Board of Selectmen caused the real estate tax bills to be sent out 3 months late.
What was the cost of that delay?
The cash flow from the G&E allows Middleboro to avoid borrowing, but what interest income was lost by not investing those dollars in this fiasco? If it was $150,000, might that represent 2 teachers?
The Dept. of Revenue recommended QUARTERLY TAX BILLING AND BI-MONTHLY PAYROLL LAST YEAR.
Combining those 2 options, would enable the town to avoid hiring additional personnel.
The Selectmen have failed to act.
Quarterly Tax Billing MIGHT provide the town with another $150,000.
The sound byte may be REVENUE, but no one is watching the LOST REVENUE.
When I reviewed the list of Town Insured Vehicles, 212 ITEMS were listed, most with $500 deductibles.
Vic Sylvia reminded me that when he was Selectman, the Town insured a vehicle it no longer owned.
When was the last time an audit was done on those 212 Items?
Insurance companies are telling you that you can save money by increasing your deductible.
I have suggested a TECHNOLOGY COMMITTEE that would address Windmills to Web Sites -- anything technological.
What could we save of your tax dollars by insulating the Town Hall where 12 town employees work?
No one seems to know what it costs to heat and air condition.
Funding is available for programs that Middleboro is not pursuing.
What could we accomplish?
Last year, when former Town Manager Jack Healey prepared the budget, handouts were available at each Selectmen’s Meeting. And many of his figures were on the easels, clearly visible to the audience and easily understood.
This year, the interim Town Manager NEVER even projected the budgets on a screen.
The information was vague and not included in the Selectmen’s Meeting minutes.
Don’t they want voters to have the information?
Also, this Board of Selectmen has pitted one department against another for dwindling resources in a manner that is unacceptable.
Each year, the Park Department, Library and COA are the sacrificial lambs.
We can work together to make this better! Residents have offered numerous creative ideas that are being ignored. We need to listen.
Last year, the Department of Revenue raised numerous issues that would SAVE money that have been ignored.
In 2003, the current Board discussed the Seniors’ Discount program that allows Seniors to volunteer their time and receive a reduction in their property taxes.
With rising heating fuel costs, it would assist our seniors in staying in the homes where they raised their children.
The program is still not implemented.
The Board of Selectmen are charged in the Town Charter as Water Commissioners, yet the failure of the Board to increase water rates delayed the tax bills.
We need to re-visit trash fees.
We need to share ideas and work for solutions.
If you’re unavailable on that day, call the Town Clerk for an Absentee Ballot at 508 946-2415.
Candidate for Selectman
Call me if you want to know my positions.
It's a short report of 14 pages with a lot of information, but the bond ratings are itemized on pages 6 and 7.
The cost of borrowing is a hidden cost, like your credit card interest.
The last comment asked of Verizon 'Can you hear me now?'
Oddly, the comments failed to address ALL of the issues surrounding Verizon's poor service.
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
One of the most striking impressions I gathered from listening to voters was the sense of disenfranchisement, that no one listened or responded to complaints. Problems brought to the attention of the Board of Selectmen are ignored. The unnecessary frustration level was evident.
Residents and Town Employees of Middleboro offer an untapped resource.
Because the single Monday Night Selectmen's Meetings are frequently filled with hearings and important business, the idea has been tossed around to offer a Saturday Morning work session intended to process the town's bills for payment, offer ideas and suggestions in a less formal environment, listen to voters, speak with department heads.