Select Board Takes Care of The Town’s Business Efficiently

Select Board Chair, John Cronin called the September 14th Board meeting to order at 7:01.  The Executive Session posted on the agenda was not needed so the Board got right to work.

Warrants: $1,513,085.73 was the weekly warrant amount approved by the Board.

Public Comment:

  • Mr. Sparrell – None
  • Mrs. Hein – Congratulated three Holliston residents (Max Athy, Joanne O’Connell, and Nate McMahanran) for completing their ‘Boston Marathon’ on our rail trail.  They raised funds for the Tim O’Connell Fund and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.  Donations to either cause can be made by visiting their websites.
  • Mr. Cronin – Schools open this week. Everyone should do their part to make it safe on the roadways and parking areas.

Comments from Town Administrator:

  • Bids for the Town Hall doors are due this Wednesday. Mr. Ahern is confident there will be qualified bids.
  • The Governance Committee is holding a joint meeting with the FinCom tomorrow evening.
  • Ahern attended the MetroWest Vets meeting at 1750 Washington Street.  We have Holliston’s vets’ needs met.
  • Stipend sub-committee plans first meeting on Sept 24th at 7:00 pm
  • Community Preservation Committee will hold a Public Hearing on September 23rd.
  • Still working towards a Special Town Meeting on October 26, 2020
  • Building Inspector, Chris Canney is leaving the Town.  His position has been posted and interviews will begin around October 1st.
  • Mr. Ahern passed along that the Holliston Health Department will NOT be holding public flu shot clinics due to logistics related to COVID.  The Board of Health is meeting Tuesday (today) to work on alternative solutions to share with citizens.

Front Street – One-Way Design Discussion:

Holliston has been awarded a $12,000 Shared Streets and Spaces from MassDOT.  This funds the Front street project as illustrated below.  The Board approved the implementation of the change as a pilot program through April 1, 2021.  Citizen feedback will be collected throughout the pilot period to determine if the changes are made permanent.

The grant proposals for enhanced crosswalks at Prospect and Washington and Linden and Washington were NOT awarded.  The Town does retain the engineering work done by Kittelson & Associates for possible future implementation.

Warrant Discussion from Town Administrator:

Mr. Ahern laid out a framework for the Warrant of the Special Town Meeting.  He received input from the Board and will be a first draft of the Warrant to next week’s Board meeting.

Coronavirus Community Update:

The weekly COVID update from Emergency Management Director, Fire Chief Michael Cassidy came later in the agenda this week so he could conduct a training meeting with his HFD Officers.

  • The Town now has 75 total cases – 5 are active as of September 14th.
  • The Town’s state of emergency reached its 6-month mark today.  While many things have been cancelled, Town Meeting, elections, graduation, and schools are re-opening thanks to the dedication and responsiveness of Holliston’s citizens and employees.  We can be proud of how we have conducted ourselves – AND don’t forget: Wash often, Wear a face covering, and Watch your distance from others.
  • The Board thanked Chief Cassidy for his strong leadership during this difficult time
  • The Board asked Cassidy to prepare a briefing for next week on the feasibility/logistics of holding Special Town Meeting on Monday, October 26, 2020.

CARES Act Programmatic Update (including requests): No new requests

Board Business:

The Board approved / accepted the following:

  • Appointment – Council on Aging – Kathleen Anguish
Bob Malone, Council on Aging Chair provided the Board with background on nominee Kathy Anguish.
  • Gift acceptance – Fire Dept – $100 Mohawk Path Residents  
  • Gift acceptance – Fire Dept – $500 American Legion Post 47
  • Gift acceptance – Police Dept – $500 American Legion Post 47

Other Business:

Mrs. Hein asked if the Board thought a traffic forum should be held to learn about the impact of two new proposed industrial sites that would likely impact truck traffic volume.  After some discussion the Board postponed action until a planned meeting with MassDOT (Tuesday/today) is held to learn how MassDOT can help Holliston.

The meeting adjourned at 8:30 pm.

Chris Cain

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