Town of Ware Massachusetts
126 Main Street, Ware, MA 01082
Selectmen Meeting Minutes November 16, 2010
BOARD OF SELECTMEN                              REGULAR MEETING
TIME: 7:00 P.M.                                 TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 16, 2010
PLACE: BOARD OF SELECTMEN MEETING ROOM

PRESENT:        Chairman William Braman, Vice-Chair Melissa Weise, John Desmond, Nancy Talbot

ABSENT:                 Richard Norton

ALSO PRESENT:   Mary Tzambazakis (Town Manager), Paul Hills (Director Community Development), David Tworek (Director Parks & Recreation), John Carroll (Park Commissioner), Christopher Dunphy (Principal Planner – PVPC)

Chairman Braman called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M.

Upon a motion duly made by Nancy Talbot and seconded by Melissa Weise to approve the Consent Agenda. All in favor.

Comments & Concerns of Citizens

A resident had concerns regarding the traffic study pattern presented at a previous meeting. He questioned the need for traffic light and moving the crosswalks.  

Roger Ouelette of Gilbertville MA addressed the Board on the subject of default and foreclosure on private homes. The petitioners filed an amendment to Federal Law to include a freeze on all foreclosures throughout the U.S. The three documents handed out to the Board include a Proposed Petition and Amendment to U.S. Congress as submitted to Senator Kerry. A petition and complaint sent to State Senator Stephen Brewer and Attorney General Martha Coakley. And, an article regarding Real Estate fraud found by Housing Secretary for H.U.D. in the wrongful foreclosures throughout the U.S. by certain creditors, lenders, banks, mortgage companies and mortgage service organizations (Attachments).

Request for Letters of Interest – Ware Cultural Council
Nancy Talbot recommends the Board solicit applications to fill the vacancy of Carol Zins. The procedure for those interested in serving on the council is to send a letter of interest to the Town Manager, Mary Tzambazakis. Vice-Chair Melissa Weise requested Ms. Zins to speak to the audience about the Ware Cultural Council. The agency is charged with distributing funds that the State has made available to the Town. The funds help promote and support the arts in the community. The commitment requires attendance at a few meetings each year as well as completion of administrative tasks.

Chairman Braman read the Winter Parking Ban to the audience:

December 1, 2010 to April 1, 2011
(or, the first plowable snow, whichever comes first)

There will be parking for no longer than one hour on any street between the hours of 1:00 A.M. to 6:00 A.M. Off street parking is available in the Municipal Lot located at the corner of Pleasant & Bank Streets. Residents who wish to use the lot must register with the Police Dept. and abide by all the rules & regulations of the Municipal Parking Lot.

Old Business - 7:15 Snow’s Entertainment License

Nancy Talbot excused herself from room due to conflict of interest. The Town Manager, Mary Tzambazakis presented incident reports from the Ware Police regarding noise, and public disturbances at Snow’s Restaurant.  Mary Tzambazakis shared concerns about the establishment in particular a report of a loud party on October 30.

Chairman Braman addressed Richard Joubert, the prospective new owner of Snow’s Restaurant and applicant for the license, regarding these issues and plans for the establishment. The sale of the establishment is in progress.

Mr. Joubert intends for his establishment to have a low impact on the neighborhood. Any patron causing a disturbance will be asked to leave. Entertainment will be on Saturday only. A DJ is planned at this time for majority of musical entertainment.  

Police Officer Jeary Beaudette indicated that he had responded to the call on October 30, 2010. “When I arrived, no one in parking lot, no one on deck. I could not hear any music. I went in and spoke with owner and asked him to turn music down. It was done in 20 seconds. My shift ended at 8 a.m. I drove around through the night and had no issue with people leaving at closing time.

Residents spoke to the Board with the concern that the owner maintain quiet between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. The source of the disturbance routinely originated from patrons leaving the establishment and loitering in the parking lot. Patrons exited with too much commotion. The entertainment tends to begin at 9 p.m. The official closing time is 1 a.m. Patrons also park on both sides of the street. The restaurant is in a residential zone and ought to have restrictions on activity in and around the establishment.

A list of considerations was given to the Board by residents (Attached).

Selectmen John Desmond – stated that he wants the business to be a success, however, is concerned for the residents. A grace period was suggested by Mr. Desmond to establish a “good faith” relationship with the residents.

The Board expressed concern about granting the license and returning to this issue again.
The Board asked the Town Manager to draft restrictions on the license with the proprietor.
The Board requested the Fire Chief double check on occupancy load.
The Board tabled the discussion until December 28, 2010

Motion made by Melissa Weise and seconded by John Desmond to continue hearing until December 28th. All in favor.

CDBG Application – Public Hearing

Paul Hills, Executive Director for Community Development Authority, indicated it was time for formal public hearing prior to FY 2011 application submission.

Chris Dunphy of PVPC described the two programs (Attachment):

  • Single-Community Application
        Memorial Field Improvements (Phase I)
        Domestic Violence Services Program
        Family Support Services – An Under Five Initiative

  • Ware River Valley Joint-Community Application – Ware, Warren, Hardwick and Brookfield
        Housing Rehabilitation
        Adult Education and Literacy at the Ware Education Center
        Administrative support and services

Selectmen Talbot made a motion for Board to endorse strategy. Seconded by John Desmond. Selectmen Braman, Talbot and Desmond in Favor. Melissa Weise Abstain.

David Tworek expressed appreciation of improvements to facilities needed at Memorial Field. Current fields are stressed by high level of sports activity year round. The installation of lights will extend playing time. Installation of Lights at Memorial Field created a discussion with regard to congestion of traffic during events and further aggravating resident abutters. There is a resident abutter serving on the committee overseeing this project. Phase I of the grant funds includes installation of lights. A $5 fee is charged to patrons using the field. This fee defrays cost of lighting. Phase II will address parking needs. Nancy Talbot mentioned scheduling of events is going to be important to the residents, suggested sending a note to organizations indicating that parking is limited in certain areas adjacent to Memorial Field.

Motion made by Selectman Talbot to approve grant application for Memorial Field noted as Phase I and Administrative support service. Second by Melissa Weise 2nd Selectmen Braman, Talbot and Desmond in Favor. Melissa Weise Abstain.

Motion made by Selectmen Talbot to approve Domestic Violence Program and
and Valley Human Services Program Second by John Desmond. Selectmen Braman, Talbot and Desmond in Favor. Melissa Weise abstain.

Motion made by John Desmond for Board to approve Ware River Valley Joint Community Application. Second by Nancy Talbot. Selectmen Braman, Talbot and Desmond in Favor. Melissa Weise abstain.

Motion made by Nancy Talbot to close public hearing at 8:54 pm Second Melissa Weise Vote: All in favor

Chairman Braman reminded residents of the Snow Removal bylaw

Motion made by Nancy Talbot to advertise the information in the local newspaper, and the Town of Ware website. Additionally, a notice will be included in the next tax billing. Second John Desmond. Vote All in Favor

Town Manager Report

  • An engineering firm was hired to check the Casino Theater. A final bill has been received. The Town needs to do a Statement of Claim to McLennan for what he owes. Requested Board move to send Statement of Claim by certified letter. The Statement of Claim is for additional charges paid by the Town to make the property safe. Prompt payment is requested.
Motion made by Nancy Talbot to allow Chairman Braman to sign on behalf of Board in front of notary. Vice-Chair Melissa Weise Second 2nd Vote: All in Favor.

  • Meet with foreman in DPW to discuss snow removal. The Town equipment is ready. Town has sand and salt. Last year six employees called in sick during snowstorm. Town has never been open to vendors for snow plowing in the event of an emergency. This is a public safety issue. An ad will be placed in Ware River News this Thursday for accepting invitations for snow plowing. The agreement will be available at noon Nov 23, 2010 in Town Manager’s office. This information will also be posted on the web site. The goal to not use vendors unless we have to. 1st call our employees, 2nd if not available DPW director will determine whether we need vendors.
  • The Town has hired Thomas Martens as DPW Director. The start date is December 20, 2010.
End of Town Manager Report to Board.

Selectmen John Desmond mentioned the former Senior Center on Church Street is in a state of decay. The building may have material inside with salvage value. The new DPW Director will be addressing this issue.

The regular session of BOS ended at 9:17 p.m.

Motion made by Nancy Talbot for the Board to enter Executive Session MGL Chapter 30A Section 21 Qualification No 3 Collective Bargaining not to return to open session. Second by Vice-Chair Melissa Weise.

Roll Call Vote:

Chairman Braman Yes
John Desmond    Yes
Nancy Talbot            Yes
Melissa Weise   Yes
Richard Norton  Absent