Select Board – July 12, 2021 Meeting

The Holliston Select Board met at 7:00pm on Monday, July 12, 2021. 

Interview of Assistant Town Administrator / HR Director

Town Administrator, Travis Ahern, provided the Board with an overview of the interview and selection process to date:

  • 25 applications for the posting were received,
  • 8 candidates had acceptable credentials,
  • 5 were interviewed by: Dr. Susan Kustka, Chief Matthew Stone, Ms. Mary Bosquet, Mr. Chris Meo, Mr. Mark Frank, Ms. Karen Sherman
  • 3 finalists interviewed by: Mr. Ahern, Mr. Austin Faison (Holliston resident and area Town Administrator, Mrs. Hein
  • Jennifer Warren-Dyment, Esq. was presented to the Board for a final interview.

The Assistant Town Administrator role is not adding to the Town’s employee count.  A retirement allowed this position to be fashioned with: Human Resources and Public Information Officer components that increase citizen interaction / communication.

Ms. Jennifer Warren-Dyment thanks the Board for their time and attention.

The Board members each asked Ms. Warren-Dyment a wide range of questions given the breadth of the job description.  Ms. Warren-Dyment shared relevant examples from her experience.  At the conclusion of the interview, Ms. Warren-Dyment asked the Board what they were looking for in this new role.  The following terms were provided (in no particular order): Outward facing, HR expertise, Liaison, Community service focus, Attend to the Town’s greatest asset – its employees, 2-way communicator.  The Board was unanimous that this was a “very strong candidate.”  Thanking all those who participated in the process to date.

The Board voted to wait on a motion to offer Ms. Warren-Dyment the position until next week’s meeting thus allowing for more time to hear from the public and to review the candidate’s resume more deeply.

Bond Anticipation Note (BAN) – signing of note and disclosure for Well No. 5

Town Treasurer / Collector Mary Bosquet leaves with the signed documents and a smile.

Tax Collector / Treasurer Mary Bosquet presented the Board with the paperwork to approve and sign related to the Bond Anticipation Note for borrowing $8.252 Million at 2.00% for the construction of the water treatment plant located at Well #5 on Central Street.  The Board unanimously approved and signed the relevant documents.  The Board thanked Mary for being the quiet force behind the recent Bond Rating increase and her work on this BAN.

Presentation from PARE Corp. on 9 Green St.

Al Hanscom (left above) from PARE Corp presented the Board with an update on the Town’s property at 9 Green Street.  First, the history of the building and the chlorinated solvents that leached into the ground from the previous property owner’s operations.

May Town Meeting voted a sum to cover the $120,000 cost of demolition of the existing building and cap the space.

The building is highlighted in beige below.  The yellow markers indicate the six existing monitoring wells that will remain during and after the demolition.

During the demolition fencing will surround the site.  The fence will have mesh that limits the movement of dust.  All environmental safety requirements will be met during / after the demolition.

Abutting property owners, Chris Lencioni (Superette) and Wesley and Julia Fjeldheim were in attendance and asked questions about the demolition and what the future plans might entail.

Below are three different landscape plans for what the space MIGHT look like.  All provide parking, Electric Vehicle Chargers, greenspace and a variety of possible amenities.

The request for bids for the demolition will go out soon.  Once the work starts, it will be done within 60 days – well before Thanksgiving.  Suzanne Adelman asked how this would impact the abandoned gas station.  That property is privately owned and not part of this plan / discussion.

CARES Act / ARPA Programmatic update

Fire Chief Michael Cassidy was not in the building and shared through Mr. Cronin that Holliston did have one new active case in the past week. He reminded everyone that the Delta variant is spiking in other parts of America and around the world.

There were no requests for CARES / ARPA funds.  People should direct questions related to Holliston’s ARPA funds (the Town is allocated $4.4 Million) use to ARPAsteering@holliston.k12.ma.us

Warrants

The Board approved FY 21 warrant for $240,251.81. and a FY22 warrant for $653,308.76.

Public Comment

  • Mr. Cronin:
    • Thanked the American Legion for the great laser light show this past Saturday
    • Passed along thanks from Chief Cassidy to all those who made the Hazardous Waste Day a success – no one was turned away because the bins were full.
  • Mr. Sparrell: None
  • Mrs. Hein:
    • Congrats to the Town’s IT department, tonight’s meeting was the 500th Zoom session!
    • Heard from many citizens about last week’s trash pick-up confusion.  Despite several messages, not everyone received the notice.  E.L. Harvey will be lenient this week in picking up overflow from last week.
  • Suzanne Adelman: Asked for an update on the South Street HCVE submission to the State. Mr. Ahern expects to hear something in 2 – 3 weeks.  Ms. Adelman also asked if large trucks are currently allowed in Hopping Brook 24/7.  Mr. Ahern will check on the existing permits in the industrial park.

Comments from Town Administrator

  • The Fall Town Meeting will be on Monday, October 18, 2021. The Warrant will open in the next few weeks and likely close in late September.
  • The State FY 22 budget was approved.  The expected State aid used to develop the Omnibus Budget is in that budget.  Specifically, Holliston received:
    • $30,000 to support the construction of the Iraq / Afghanistan monument,
    • $100,000 for Goodwill Park improvements,
    • $25,000 for HDAAC (Holliston Drug and Alcohol Coalition)
    • $350,000 for mental health support at MetoWest area schools.
  • The first meeting of the Comprehensive Long-range Planning Committee will be held via Zoom this Wednesday at 7:00pm

Board Business:

  • Approved a one-day for Crafted to serve Beer and Wine license on July 17, 2021 at Arcadian Farm; Noon – 3 pm.
  • Approved minutes of the June 14, 2021 meeting

Other Business:

Three line item budget transfers were approved by the Board (which is allowed until July 15th)

  • $60,000 from Benefits to Solid Waste removal
  • $11,550 from HPD dispatchers to patrol
  • $3,060 from HPD dispatchers to supplies

The meeting adjourned at 9:12 pm for Executive Session – Reason 6 (Real Property)

Chris Cain

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