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IN-TOWN REPORT 5-9-10 …

IN-TOWN REPORT 5-9-10

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  • 1. Town Meeting Wrap Up 1st NIGHT Center Town Hall and North Town Hall both get approved for face lifts... Voters OK Town Hall projects By Rita Savard, rsavard@lowellsun.com http://www.lowellsun.com/ci_14966362 04/27/2010 CHELMSFORD -- Breezing through 19 warrant articles last night, including passage of a $101 million level-service budget and appropriating $5.27 million in community-preservation funding to renovate two historic town halls, Town Meeting repre- sentatives said their votes proved "Chelmsford gets it done." "If ever there was an article that's a no-brainer, this is it," said Dennis Ready, of Precinct 8. it Voters overwhelmingly passed Articles 18 and 19 to restore both the old Center Town Hall on North Road and the old North Town Hall on Princeton Street. Renovations for Center Town Hall, which will be used as a gallery and community function hall, will include a new addition in the back of the building for an elevator and a handicap-accessible entrance, as well as new ventilation and heating sys- tems. Work on the North Town Hall will include new plumbing, heating and electrical systems, as well as repairs to the foundation and enforcement of the floors. Once the work is completed, the building will be used as a community center. Former Selectman Clare Jeannotte, of Precinct 7, said that once the North Town Hall is renovated, "it will bring a vital - ity to that area that hasn't been there in a very long time."time. Although there are no layoffs on the horizon, Cohen said the town is operating with 150 fewer employees than it had in fis- cal 2007. Property taxes, he added, have gone up significantly when it comes to paying for town services, jumping from about $48 million in fiscal 2001 to an estimated $75.7 million for fiscal 2011. Taxpayers are now footing the bill for three-quarters of the town's budget "because our (state) revenues are being cut out from under us," Cohen said. us, It's the future, Cohen said, that has him raising a "caution flag." As stimulus funding for the state disappears, town offi- flag. cials wonder what that will mean for state aid come fiscal 2012. In the last decade, Chelmsford's state aid has decreased by more than 10 percent, or $1.5 million. Town Meeting also approved an article that will allow a couple of appointed monitors from the town's Disabilities Commis- sion to snap photos of vehicles illegally parked in handicap spots and submit them to police. Fines for violators were also increased from $100 to $200. Karen DeDonato, of Precinct 8, who said the increased fine would be a good deterrent, added that she knew someone who received a ticket in New Hampshire for $250 after illegally parking in a handicap space. "They'll never do it again," she said. again, RELATED STORIES: Town Meeting votes to accept 2011 budget -CLICK HERE Town Meeting passes $101 million budget -CLICK HERE Town Meeting reps OK Town Hall articles -CLICK HERE North Chelmsford residents say thanks - CLICK HERE
  • 2. 2nd NIGHT Housing for vets gets OK By Rita Savard, rsavard@lowellsun.com http://www.lowellsun.com/ci_14990470 04/30/2010 CHELMSFORD -- After two-and-a-half hours of questions and debate, Town Meeting last night overwhelmingly voted to partially fund a proposed home for eight veterans on a waiting list for affordable housing. The town awarded $400,000 in community preservation funds to build a duplex at 9 Manahan St., off Chelmsford Street, that will be managed by the Chelmsford Housing Authority. The CPA money would be matched by nearly $1 million in state and federal funding to make the project a reality. But the project met some opposition last night as some residents questioned the project's size and location. Neighbor Neal Lerer, who lives at 4 Manahan St., across the road from the proposed site, said the 17,000-square-foot lot seems too small for a duplex. Lerer said he is in favor of housing for veterans, adding that his nephew is currently serving in Afghanistan, but that a smaller project would be best. "Four (units) would be perfect, six would be OK, eight is too many," Lerer said. many, Hedison said because of the way projects like these are funded, the Housing Authority couldn't go smaller than eight units. Hedison said the Manahan Street site was chosen for its proximity to community services, including bus transportation, grocery and department stores. The proposed project would create a first- and second-floor unit, each with four bedrooms and a shared living space. The first floor would be handicapped-accessible. A stream of questions on the proposal was followed by some passionate statements in favor of the home. Fran McDougall said that on Monday night, Town Meeting approved spending millions of dollars, "but to house a few veterans, we have no room for them in our town?" town? Chelmsford Veterans Agent Regina Jackson said that in April alone, she had 17 veterans and their families apply for aid. She also talked about the town's eight homeless veterans, who spend their days couch-surfing with friends and family while they await a home of their own. Town Meeting ended up overwhelmingly passing the project. After the vote, Lerer and Hedison shook hands in the hallway outside the meeting room. Lerer said he's glad something is going to be built for veterans, even though he was hoping it would be smaller. "I'm sure he will do what he can to work with the neighbors," Lerer said of Hedison. "He's a hard worker." neighbors, worker. An ecstatic Hedison said he's "proud to be a part of this town." town. "I promise I'll do whatever I can to work with you and the people in the neighborhood," Hedison told Lerer. neighborhood, It can be draining, Hedison added, "when you see these people every day looking for help, and you have to tell them they have to wait, or there's nothing you can do for them right now. now "Now there will be eight less people to worry about," he added. about, Town Meeting last night also approved CHA's request for putting $75,000 in community preservation funds to create five two-bedroom units on the corner of Princeton Street and Highland Avenue. RELATED STORIES: Meeting OKs Highland Ave. housing proposal -CLICK HERE Veterans housing on Manahan OK'd- CLICK HERE Town Meeting reps OK housing articles -CLICK HERE
  • 3. The Garrison House Associa- tion & the Chelmsford Garden Club celebrated Arbor Day on April 30th with the planting of an apple tree on the Garrison House property in Chelms- ford. The apple tree was do- nated by the Garden Club and two of the club officers helped with the ceremonial planting. The Chelmsford Board of Select- men issued a Proclamation to mark the occasion, and Betty Ripsom gave a talk about the history of Arbor Day. Betty Ripsom George Ripsom The Chelmsford Garden Club donated the apple tree to the Garrison House Association. Photos by Tom Christiano
  • 4. The Chelmsford Historical Society held its Annual Dinner at the Barrett Byam Homestead on May 1st. The president of the Historical Society, Carol Merriam, presented the 2010 Guardian Award to the Chelmsford Open Space Stewardship (COSS). Accepting the Award on behalf of the COSS was the lead Steward, Phil Stanway. Mr. Stanway narrated a slide show at the dinner, cov- ering many of the open space projects that the Stewards have recently completed in town. Phil Stanway Fred Merriam Carol Merriam Photos by Tom Christiano
  • 5. & * POLITICALLY INCORRECT with Tom Christiano 15 years 300 shows CLICK HERE for Show The panelists are (l to r) Paul Cohen, Kathy Duffett, Tom Christiano, Ann McGuigan & George Dixon. Senator Susan Fargo presented Tom Christiano with an Official State Senate Citation on May 4th of this year. The Citation reads, in part: "Be it known that the Massachusetts Senate hereby extends its Congratulations to Tom Christiano in recognition of your 15 years of dedicated service to the Chelmsford Community as host of Polit- ically Incorrect...." The Citation was also signed by the President of the Sen- ate Therese Murray, in addition to State Senator Susan Fargo.
  • 6. The FIRST  PI Show 15 years ago. The panelists were: Bill Logan, Mike McCall, Barbara Ward & Jack Emerson. Three of them were Chelmsford Selectmen & Barbara was a mem- ber of the Chelmsford School Committee.
  • 7. Political Junkies with Tom Christiano MASS State Treasurer Candidate (R) & current State Representative Karyn Polito, & Show host Tom Christiano, on POLITICAL JUNKIES . CLICK HERE for Show State Senator Susan Fargo (D) & Show Host Tom Christiano, on POLITICAL JUNKIES CLICK HERE for Show
  • 8. In-Town Report FLASHBACK The Story now Continues... Inquiring about the latest rumors that the gazebo and the memorial park would disappear from the Westlands landscape. School Committee member Nick DeSilvio along with other town officials and Reps recieved this response from Superintendent Donald Yeoman - Gazebo at Westlands Dear Nick: The gazebo was built in 1992 in memory of a Westlands’ student killed by a car some years ago and donated to Westlands School. It is in the woods in the extreme back section of the property and is not lit. The gazebo and plague have been continuously damaged and defaced by vandals over the years. The gazebo itself is covered in vulgar graffiti and many of the benches in the woods have been destroyed or dam- aged. The roof needs repair, and one of the ramps has deteriorated and is unsafe. Paths are overgrown with tall grass and weeds at various times of the year. The site is continuously misused for drug transactions and sex. Neighbors, staff, and parents have complained about it over the years for various reasons including safety and being what the law calls "an attractive nuisance." (In other words, the school district and the town can be held legally liable for what transpires there.) When this came to my attention last fall, I examined the area. I inspected the area myself and saw it was unsafe, in serious disrepair, and "an attractive nuisance." Since the Chelmsford Public Schools no longer has a maintenance crew or maintenance dollars, I called Gary Persichetti who is in charge now of all town maintenance. We inspected the area together and agreed the gazebo and surrounding areas were deteriorat- ing from destructive abuse and age and that the area was unsafe and "an attractive nuisance." . I spoke with Chief Murphy, and although his officers regularly inspect the area, persons continue to deface and destroy property and continue to misuse the site for improper and illegal ac- tivity.
  • 9. Since the original intent was that the student who was killed was to be honored and not the gazebo, we agreed that the large rock with the commemorative plaque could be moved to the front entrance of the building and placed there in the garden by the front door as a permanent special memorial to the child. That garden is well maintained. Then the gazebo and the benches could be removed eliminating the "attractive nuisance" legal concern. This would also reduce the likelihood of drug trafficking and sexual liaisons on the site. I asked Community Education Director Connie Silvia to locate the family who donated the memorial. The father was located during the winter in Florida and will visit our community in late May. When he arrives, we will explain our plan. If he approves of it, I will recommend the plan to the School Committee. If he does not, then the School Committee will have to decide what to do to ensure safety and prevent injuries, drug traffick- ing, and sexual liaisons on school grounds. Policy 4402 states, “…Gifts will automatically become the property of the Chelmsford Public Schools….” After the father visits our town later this month, and we explain our plan, I will be in touch with you. Don And Nick DeSilvio’s reply: Dr. Yeoman, Below is an email I received today from Phil Stanway regarding this subject. We are allays willing to pitch in. This land is School Dept land and that the only town department we do not work with. We work with BOS,DPW,CFD,CPD, land trust ,Sportsman club, garden clubs , Scouts, private farmers... but the school department does everything with its own staff. If it was a town park then no way this would happen... this area and Byam are really the two sites that have the most drug use. The other open space sites we have a strong presence and 100% of the land controllers so if issues pop up we are all over them. The kids know that these two areas are not actively maintained and so they are open for this type of activity. Things seem to be changing a bit and the door is opening and we will see over the next few months. The idea of ripping down a structure and gutting a park for a few bad kids... does not sit well with me. We must all remember that this Gazebo may have been put there by a caring and loving family in memory of their child but over the years has become a place of enjoyment by many families including my own. This is one of the places in town that belongs to the community and no one person or group of individuals can make a unilateral decision without exhausting every possible solution. Phil's Stanways organization(Open Space Chelmsford Stewardship) is volunteering to help us and I think it would be foolish not to accept his help. Chelmsford is a great commu- nity and we need to seek out help and overturn every stone before we give up and say it can't be done. Lets invite individuals, organizations, and businesses to help us when we have a problem or when they want to enhance our facilities and once we explored all possible avenues then we can find the easy way out. The School Department can not be to be a separate kingdom and no one is a king look down on everyone else, we are a big part of Chelmsford, emphasizing "part". Maybe over time All of Chelmsford can begin to love us again instead of having an adversarial feeling all the time. "legal concerns" - If this is how we are going to run this organization, running from one legal concern to another then lets give up now. We need to stop being afraid of doing good and doing what's right for our kids. As long as we are honest with ourselves and we are not negligent then let's move forward full steam ahead. We need to become more proactive and not reactive. If you would like to discuss this further feel free to contact me at any time. Best Regards, Nick ************************************************** Longtime resident Dorothy Skelley of Steadman street remembers Cynthia Ann Moores whom the park is named after and dedicated to ... From: Dorothy Skelley Subject: RE: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species Date: May 4, 2010 Thanks to all of you have opened up this discussion. The closing of the Westlands School, as an elemen- tary school and focal point of the neighborhood, was indeed a very sad day. And, most of us in the neigh- borhood have enjoyed the Westlands School playground and the Cynthia Ann Moores Nature Park for many years.
  • 10. While the maintenance and safety considerations are significant, I applaud the community for trying to pre- serve this space in some manner as the dedication of this area is significant to the history of the Westlands. Cindy Moores was struck and killed by a car on Steadman St. as she was crossing the street to her house in October, 1986. She was 10 years old. Twenty-four years later, understandably, many people in the community have no idea of who she was, just as we don’t know many other historical figures of earlier generations whose memory we honor in various ways for the contribution they made to our town. The day we moved into our house on Steadman St., Cindy, with her big smile and a head full of bouncing curls, knocked on our door to welcome us to the neighborhood. She was an extraordinary child – bright, lov- ing and talented. She was considered a role model for her classmates, to the extent that the Westlands School issued a Cynthia Ann Moores Citizenship award every year to a graduating fifth-grader who exempli- fied the kind of positive outreach that Cindy was known for during her short life. In a time where bullying has reached an alarming level and often with devastating consequences, remem- bering a little girl who was loving and accepting of everyone she met seems like a pretty good tradition to embrace. It’s unfortunate that we, as a community, didn’t get to see this wonderful child reach her full poten- tial, as there is no doubt that she would have made lasting contributions and enriched many lives. Maintain- ing this open space and the memorial to the spirit embodied in Cynthia Moores, now more than ever, deserves to be honored and preserved, and we are very interested in participating in this effort. Ken and Dorothy Skelley Another longtime resident TM REP Debbie Derry of Steadman street remembers... From: Debbie Dery Subject: RE: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species Date: May 4, 2010 The little girl with the big smile and the giggles is what I'll remember about Cindy. My daughters played with her for many years and until this day they still remember her birthday and speak of her on the anniversary of her death with love. They never rode their bikes again after Cindy died because they feared what happened to her could happen to them. They never asked for a scooter because that was what Cindy was on the day she died. The sadness they felt took a long time to heal the loss of their friend. Today they speak of her with a smile because time does heal and speak of her family with fondness. I did work at the park with the cub scouts and was proud to explain to them the little girl that the park was named for. I was aware that there are kids hanging around the park where drugs are used. Do you really be- lieve that the activity will stop if the gazebo is torn down and the memorial stone is moved? It was as recent as Saturday that I saw a car that was speeding along Dalton Road that I was following when a noticed a young driver with kids in the car turning into the parking lot. What it tells me is that we need more police presence and not the demolition of the park for a few individuals that will continue to use the property re- gardless. We continue to preserve open space and I'm sure Phil could tell you all about the beer cans that need to be picked up and the trash that our stewards clean up because of the parties that take place. This is one of the only areas in the Westland's that can be used for the playground and a walk with mother nature. I'm sure with a little planning and maybe a fundraiser that the property could once again be an asset to our neighbor- hood. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to preserve the memorial park named for a sweet little girl. Best, Debbie Dery
  • 11. Taken from a Lowell Sun article printed back in early 90’s about the groundbrealing ceromonies of the Cynthia Ann Moores memorial nature trail and park ... From the air, Moores said, the park is laid out in the shape of a foot print. During the groundbreaking ceremony, his wife said; “And it is this footprint that we would like to think Cyndi has left on the lives of all the people who will enjoy the park. ”
  • 12. This is a link to a copy of something written by a friend of Cyndi's that was sent to me by her father, Art. We should all read it and remember what the park represents before making any decisions. The Westlands community understands and the link to the document will help those who do not live here understand. CLICK HERE for “You Were Silly Like Us; Your Gift Survived it All” Laurie Myers Town Meetin Representative Precinct 6 ********************************* SELECTMEN : What Say You? I'm interested to learn more - not sure I understand the logic of tearing it down. Kids will just find another place to smoke, and you can't tear every place down. Understanding it's school property, if there's anything I can do from this side let me know ... - SEAN SCANLON ********************************* We did discuss it briefly at our work session on Monday. It is really a decision for the School Committee since they have control of the property. That having been said, it is my understanding that Phil Stanway is willing to work to fix it up and that Chief Murphy will increase police presence in the area. Phil has had extraordinary success in solving similar vandalism issues around town and if the Westlands Watchdogs are willing to oc - caisionally check out the site (and kids know that it will be monitored regularly) I don't see any reason why it should be torn down. It is clear from the e-mails that Cindy Moores was a special child whose tragic death affected an entire community. It would be a shame if this memorial could not be restored and maintained to honor her memory. - Jon Kurland *********************************
  • 13. The solution is obvious: the park and gazebo should remain intact. Responsibility should go to the town, which will work in close collaboration with the Chelmsford Open Space Stewards to maintain and preserve the space in perpetuity, as we do successfully on an ever-growing number of spaces across Chelmsford. I raised this matter at the BOS's work session on Monday 5/3. Although no vote was taken, my strong sense is that this sentiment is shared by my colleagues. I communicated this to Don in an email later that night. This solution is a win-win-win-win: for those who, like me, wish to continue to memorialize Cyndi, for the Westlands neighborhood, for the School Department, and for the town. - Eric Dahlberg ********************************* I am sure the situation will be handled competently and to everybody's satisfaction in the end! - George Dixon ********************************* It would be a shame to tear down the Westland’s Memorial Park gazebo. There are groups in town such as the Chelmsford Open Space Stewardship and a number of Eagle Scouts that would make it a project to repair and maintain the park. I am hopeful that the Superintendant and the School Committee will look at other options such as asking for increased police patrols in the area or al - lowing the park to be maintained by the Chelmsford Open Space Stewardship or the Eagle Scouts. - Matt Hanson
  • 14. Officials looking at demolishing gazebo By Chloe Gotsis/ Staff Writer GateHouse News Service http://www.wickedlocal.com/chelmsford/topstories/x289799512/Officials-looking-at-demolishing-gazebo May 06, 2010 Chelmsford — The gazebo in the Westlands, first erected in 1992 as a memo- rial to a student, has become a haven for drug use and vandalism, according to officials. Now School Superintendent Don Yeoman wants to solve the problem. “For years the School Department took care of that but all the maintenance staff were taken from the School Department by the town, so now we can’t take care of it. Now simply put, you can tell what’s going on there, by what you find the next day,” Yeoman said. day During inspections of the area, officials have reported finding condoms and drug paraphernalia. Yeoman says the gazebo and plaque commemorating the student, Cynthia Ann Moores, who died in a car accident, have been damaged beyond repair over the years. Yeoman blames teenagers. “The ramp probably isn’t even suitable for a wheelchair anymore,” he said. “There are vulgar swears and anymore, graffiti written all over the structure.” Yeoman said the illicit activities put the School Department at a legal risk. “There’s a legal term called ‘attractive nuisance,’” he said. “We are liable for anything that happens in there. If someone were die or [get injured or seriously ill] from a drug overdose there, we would be held liable.” liable. Yeoman said that he has contacted Moores’ father and he has agreed to fly up from Florida, where he is now living and look at the site at the end of this month. Yeoman said with the help of Police Chief James Murphy he has developed a plan to move the large rock with the commemorative plaque to the front entrance of the Community Education Building and place it in the garden. “It’d really make a nice memorial to her because it’s well lit and safe there,” he said. there, When Yeoman meets with Moores’ father at the end of this month, he will explain the plan and if he approves, the gazebo will be removed and the rock moved. “If he does not [agree], then the School Committee will have to decide what to do to ensure safety and prevent injuries, drug trafficking and sexual liaisons on school grounds ,” said Yeoman in a letter to the School Committee members. But some Westland neighbors say the solution isn’t that simple. "Personally I would have to say, that gazebos don’t do drugs, people do , ” said Roy Earley, a Chelms- ford Street resident and member of the Westlands Watchdogs, a neighborhood group, in an e-mail. “And only the foolish would think that by tearing down the gazebo and gutting the parkit would curtail the nocturnal activity that is supposedly happening in the Westlands area. ” ******************************** Duffet: SC does not support tearing down gazebo By Chloe Gotsis/ Staff Writer GateHouse News Service http://www.wickedlocal.com/chelmsford/newsnow/x1381031224/Duffet-SC-does-not-support-tearing-down-gazebo May 06, 2010 Chelmsford — The School Committee does not support tearing down a gazebo, built as a memorial to a deceased Westlands student in 1992, according to Chairwoman Kathy Duffet. Duffet said she took a straw poll with all the members of the School Committee last night through telephone calls and after hearing passionate support from the Westlands neighbors to maintain the gazebo the members do not back School Superintendent Dr Don Yeoman’s proposal to move the structure. According to Yeoman the gazebo has become an after hours asylum for after drugs and sexual encounters for teenagers.
  • 15. News of Yeoman’s plan to tear down the gazebo and move a large rock with a plaque commemorating the life of 10-year- old Cyndi Ann Moores, to the front of the Community Education Building broke earlier this week. Moores was fatally injured when she was hit by a car on Stedman Street in 1986. Since word first came of the plan, the Moores’ former neighbors and residents from all over town have been reaching out to town officials to express their concerns about changing the Cyndi Ann Moores Memorial Park, which was dedicated in 1992. “Each member has been touched by individuals in the [Westlands] community saying what their opinion is,” said Duffet. is, But Duffet said the committee will have a comprehensive discussion on solutions to the illegal activity and drinking occur- ring in the gazebo at the end of the month. Arthur Moores, Cyndi’s father, is scheduled to visit the park at the end of May and meet with Yeoman. “We want to be incredibly considerate to the needs and the feelings of the family,” said Duffet. “So after family, that meeting we will bring it forward for a discussion with the School Committee for all the possible so - lutions including working with Mr. Stanway and his Open Space Stewards. Any and all options will be explored at the meeting where there is a thorough discussion amongst all members and the commu - nity.” nity. Moores, who now lives in Florida, said after hearing about the outcry of support to fix up the park and the gazebo from his former Westlands neighbors he wants to keep the gazebo in its current location. “I was under the impression that there was a lot of complaining people and that were upset with the gazebo there. I also heard that police were very upset with having the gazebo there, ” he said. “…But there’s been a groundswell of support from the Westland community. So now I have a change of opinion now I’m not so sold on the fact that everyone wanted to get rid of it. ” Moores said he and Cyndi’s mother built the park in the back of the then West- lands School as a tribute to their daughter’s love of nature and the school. “My daughter Cyndi really loved mother nature,” said Moores. “She nature, loved the outdoors… It was our hope that the nature trail was shaped in a footprint that our daughter ahd left on the face of the earth. That’s basically what the park was envisioned to be about.” about. ****************************************************** Dennis Ready's CLICK TOWN TALK 5/6/10 with Superintendent HERE Donald Yeoman. For Video clip Talking about the removal of the gazebo and the me- morial at the Westlands Cynthia Ann Moores trail & Park behind the Westlands School
  • 16. Chelmsford memorial, safety concerns clash By Rita Savard, rsavard@lowellsun.com http://www.lowellsun.com/ci_15050003 05/09/2010 CHELMSFORD -- A 10-year-old isn't supposed to die. And Ms. Lospennato's class at the Westlands Elementary School was suddenly thrown into a very adult world on the day in 1986 that Cynthia Ann Moores was struck and killed by a car while crossing Steadman Street. "I remember going into the classroom and seeing her empty desk," Melissa Bartos wrote in a college essay eight years desk, later. "Somehow her desk symbolized how I felt. It looked so sad and lonely. It was more than just a desk that no one was sitting in because they were home sick, it was Cyndi's desk, and she was never coming back."back. A town in mourning soon turned its grief into something tangible. In 1992, a nature trail was built behind the elementary school in Cyndi's memory. From the sky, the park was shaped like a footprint, marking the "imprint Cyndi left on all of our lives," Bartos said. "No matter how old we get, (the park) will always be a symbol of her love," Bartos said. love, Today, the park's trails are overgrown. The wishing well is gone, benches broken. And graffiti is splattered on the gazebo, which has become a hangout spot for teens and is "continuously misused for drug transactions and sex," said Superintendent of Schools Don Yeoman. sex Yeoman wants changes, sparking outcry among Westlands neighbors and those who remember Cyndi. Yeoman said this week that he understands the pain of losing a child; his son, Christopher, a Berklee graduate who played drums in a Christian rock group, was killed in a car crash in 1998 while on tour. But he said he also has to consider the community's safety. "We don't want little children going out there and finding condoms or drug paraphernalia on the ground, or reading the graffiti, which is quite terrible," he said. "It goes against what the park was meant for." terrible, for. Yeoman has proposed tearing down the gazebo and benches behind the school. He has suggested moving the rock affixed with a bronze plaque that bears Cyndi's picture and a poem to the front of the school, where it will be "more visible and easier to maintain." maintain Cyndi's family, her former classmate and people in the neighborhood who knew her say removing the memorial will feel like remov- ing a piece of Cyndi. Their e-mails have flooded the School Department. "She loved being outdoors," said Cyndi's father, Arthur Moores, who now lives in Florida. "We wanted Cyndi to leave a outdoors, footprint, and that's how we came up with the design for the park, taking all the things she loved about nature - - flowers, trees and butterflies -- and arranging them in a way that the community could enjoy. The park wasn't put there to cause problems. My heart was broken when I heard people might be fighting over it." it. Cyndi's mother, Barbara Moores, who still lives in Chelmsford, wants the park revived. Chelmsford
  • 17. "She was such a special girl," Barbara said. "The park was a place girl, where people could go, enjoy the outdoors and still feel connected to Cyndi's energy." energy. Dorothy Skelley remembers the day she and her husband moved into their house on Steadman Street, when an extraordinary girl with "a head full of bounc- ing curls," knocking on their door to welcome them. That was Cyndi, said Barbara Moores, always running to the front of the line to lend a helping hand or make others feel comfortable. She loved music, singing and dancing, and played the piano like a pro. In Bar- tos's essay, she wrote about a music teacher yelling at Cyndi when she wasn't able to get a dance step right. "But Cyndi just kept on trying as usual, and the smile never left her face," Bartos said. "By the end of class, she face, had the step down perfectly and was helping others learn how to do it."it She was also brave. Cyndi's aunt, Beth Jones, said her son, Michael Tousignant, might not be alive today if not for Cyndi. One winter, when Michael was 2, he climbed on top of a covered swimming pool in the backyard and fell in. Cyndi was playing bas- ketball in the driveway when she heard splashing and discovered her cousin struggling in the water. "She was only 8, but she just went in and got him," Jones said. "To me this issue with the memorial is about him, more than preserving a park, it's about preserving what Cyndi stood for." for. The Westlands School issued an annual Cynthia Ann Moores Citizenship Award, given to a graduating fifth-grader who best exem- plified Cyndi's positive spirit. When Ms. Lospennato's class graduated high school, Bartos remembers going to Pine Ridge Cemetery with other former fifth- grade classmates. They laid a bouquet of roses at Cyndi's grave -- maroon and white, Chelmsford High's colors. The high-school yearbook dedicated a page to Cyndi. A local group has offered to breathe new life back into Cyndi's nature trail. The Open Space Stewards, led by Phil Stanway, have revitalized 14 sites, including a couple that were considered the "worst" in town. Two years ago, stewards cleaned and revived the old Russell Mill Pond site, cutting down nine illegal hunting stations. "We hauled out fire pits, a lot of garbage, and for a while we had to break up drinking parties on the week - ends," Stanway said. ends, The Conservation Commission manages and protects open spaces. The stewards volunteer to pick up trash, plant flowers, paint over graffiti, or mend broken fences and other structures. "We'd be happy to take this project on," Stanway said. "We have offered to do it if we can maintain it. I've got on, people with a power washer ready to go, and people offering to bring in flowers and plants. It's not, 'Let's just clean it up and have a party and forget about it.' We're in it for the long haul but first we need the School De - partment to OK it." it. The School Committee, said Chairwoman Kathy Duffett, "is not in favor of tearing down the gazebo." gazebo. Yeoman said he will meet with Arthur Moores at the end of the month, so that Moores can see the site. "No decisions will be made until we know what the parents want first," Yeoman said. first, If the nature trail is restored, Yeoman said he hopes it will not be vandalized again. Police Chief James Murphy said the gazebo is a "tough area, only because it's way out back to the farthest point of area the property." property. "We've had more complaints there than in the town's other secluded areas," he said. "There has been drug activ - areas, ity, numerous reports of vandalism, and evidence of alcohol and drug abuse." abuse Teens were arrested there about a year ago for selling marijuana, Murphy said. Police have been called to the school area about 20 times in the past year, mostly for suspicious activity and vandalism, Murphy said. Stanway said that in his experience, once a site is restored, abuse of the property tends to stop. Bartos, now 32, said she too, will volunteer to help the stewards revive the nature trail. "That park was put there to symbolize her memory," she said. "If it's taken away, I feel that the imprint she had memory, on our lives would be lost. I hope it can go on so her memory can go on."on
  • 18. ☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ FROM CHIEF MURPHY/CHELMSFORD POLICE: First off, it's a shame that such a beautiful area & memorial to a young girl tragically killed in an accident, has been the site of illicit activity & vandalism. I stopped by & walked the area this afternoon & noted the spray painting & carvings that have damaged the gazebo. Unfortuantely, areas such as these, that are in somewhat secluded areas (especially at night) seem to be prone to this type of activity. Being extremely close to a populated neighborhood allows for a popular gathering spot for numerous individuals. Of course, it's not illegal to visit & sit in the park & gazebo area, but it's those that damage & conduct other illegal activities that are the source of the problem. So now comes the question of what we, as a community, can do. While officers have conducted literally hundreds of property checks over the past year, mostly at night, we need to do more & need more assistance from the public. When we've experienced problems in other areas of town such as Varney Park & some of the conservation areas, we've had individuals band together & work as a team to "police" the area. These individuals have been of great assistance to our department in identifying problems, identifying individuals repsonsible for breaking the rules and for fixing the problems that they cause. Phil Stanway has organized the land stewards into teams that clean, repair & monitor the sites across town. He also assisted the people at Varney Park with addressing some of the negative issues that plagued that area last summer. I don't want to add more work to histeam, but I'd bet he'd be willing to meet with you guys & explain his program. It's really worked out well in reducing some of the problems. While we recognize the fact that we'll probably never eliminate all the problems, there can be a significant difference made by making sure an area is kept up, clean, painted, well lit, repaired & monitored. While inspecting the park area today, I did notice that there was extreme overgrowth in the area, missing & loose bricks on the walkway, broken benches & of course spray painting & carvings on the gazebo. These might be some of the areas that could be addressed in beautifying the park. It might also be a good idea to look into some type of additional lighting for the area. The police department will continue to conduct extra patrols & checks of the area. I would also urge anyone using the park, playground or school area to notify us immediately if they feel anything suspicious or disturbing is taking place. Begin forwarded message: From: "Ken & Bryn Dews" Date: May 8, 2010 To: "'Debbie Dery'" , “Barb Belanger, “Arthur Moores, "'Roy Earley'" Cc: "'Kathy Duffett'" , "'Joanne Anderson'" , “Laurie Myers”,” Matt Hanson”, "'Nick DeSilvio'" , “Evelyn Thoren, “Colleen Stansfield”, "'Mike Combs'", "'Dorothy Skelley'" , "'Dick St. Onge'" , "'Brad and Sue Dillman'" , "'Deb and John Arthur'" , Matthew Cilento, Kris Lefebvre”, “Jane Moores”, “Bryn Dews”, "'Diane Early'", “Eric Dahlberg”, “Frank Tiano”,”Janet Askenburg”,”Phil Stanway” Subject: RE: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species I was surprised to read in the Independent that according to Dr. Yeoman the Gazebo is damaged “beyond repair”. That certainly is not true. The entrance ramp has deteriorated due to natural causes and could be repaired fairly easily. The gazebo structure is actually in excellent condition and needs only cosmetic work done. I’ll see if I can’t get to it this week. Ken *************************************** From: "Nick DeSilvio" <ndesilvio@comcast.net> Date: May 8, 2010 To: "Ken & Bryn Dews" Subject: Re: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memo- rial Park - An Endangered Species Ken, Thanks for your input. This issue will be resolved Tuesday evening at the school committee meeting. We welcome all citi- zens to join us, the meeting begins at 7:00PM at the School administration build- ing on North Rd.. Regards, Nick DeSilvio *************************************** From: "Nick DeSilvio" Date: May 8, 2010 Subject: Re: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memo- rial Park - An Endangered Species Hi All, Went out to the Park today with my kids, I forgot how nice it is back there. Ken is ab- solutely correct the amount on mainte- nance needed to get this back into shape is minimal. Power washer, some poly, a few 4 x 4's, 2 x 6's, raking the path, some pavers, and
  • 19. trimming trees & low brush is all that is needed. I going to check with the help of a few friends that I know to find out who Bri, Sallie, Tyler, and Laura are, maybe they can help with determining who is writing things about them. Good chance they are neighborhood kids and maybe they can help keeping it clean and safe. Paul let me know your plans after Tues.. if I'm free I would like to join in with my gang to help. Regards, Nick *************************************** From: "Colleen Stansfield" Date: May 8, 2010 Subject: Re: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species This is great, Nick! Add me to the list of helpers. I live close by and have a big truck at my disposal along with a shed full of tools. (although I do not want to be the using the Chainsaw!) I am so happy to see such a positive movement for the Park! 8-) Colleen *************************************** From: Roy Earley Date: Sat, 8 May 2010 Subject: Re: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species Just give the word Pappy and my house will be there with rakes in hand ;) *************************************** From: Debbie Dery Date: May 8, 2010 Subject: RE: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species Thank you Nick. Please let me know when you're planning the clean up and I'll be there. Debbie *************************************** From: barbara belanger Date: May 8, 2010 Subject: Re: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species Even me, the lame one can help. Phil had me weeding and clipping last week, and Nicole and Ry are now pros too! Barb *************************************** From: "Philip Stanway" Date: May 8, 2010 Subject: RE: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species Add Me (Phil Stanway) and whatever Stewards I can roust up…. Well once and if we get the OK. *************************************** From: Laurie Myers Date: May 8, 2010 Subject: Re: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species We are in :) *************************************** From: "Dorothy Skelley" Date: May 8, 2010 Subject: RE: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species We’re in. Ken and Dorothy Skelley *************************************** From: Janet Askenburg Date: May 8, 2010 Subject: Re: "Westlands" Gazebo & Memorial Park - An Endangered Species Count the Askenburgs in.
  • 20. Chelmsford Planning Board approves special permits By Chloe Gotsis/staff writer GateHouse News Service http://www.wickedlocal.com/chelmsford/newsnow/x932360758/Chelmsford-Planning-Board-expected-to-vote-on-North-Road-building Apr 28, 2010 Chelmsford — Planning Board voted 6 to 1 Wednesday nigt to approve special permit for off street parking at the Emerson House for 9 North Road office building. The board also passed a special permit for landscaping and a request to build within the aquifer zone, all requested for the same project. The votes allow Epsilon Group, owned by Michael Eliopoulos, father of former selectmen Philip, the green light to begin construction on the two-story office building. But plans for the 15,000-square-foot building have resulted in two lawsuits filed by property owner Michael Sargent and his attorney, Peter Lawlor. The suits target two different town boards. Lawlor sued in Land Court earlier this month, challenging the Planning Board’s approval of the site plan permit and four special permits. In late December, Lawlor filed an appeal with the Land Court over the Historic District’s Commission’s approval of the project. Lawlor and Sargent, who owns neighboring property, argue town board’s have hastily approved permits for the project without considering vio- lations of the area’s historic district and preservation restrictions. Both boards defend the approvals. Planning Board Chairwoman Ann McGuigan said last week the board closed the public hearing on the three additional permits and will vote tonight. Epsilon is requesting permits to build within an Aquifer Protection District, off-street parking for the neighboring historic Emerson House, which the Eliopouloses have restored and for landscaping on the site.. McGuigan said that the board has received letters from the Board of Health, Department of Public Works, Police and Fire departments, Com- munity Development Office and Conservation Commission all of whom found no concerns with the permit requests. *********************************** Police taking CHS threat seriously Staff reports http://chelmsfordmassnews.com • Thu, May 06, 2010 Chelmsford High School students will be required to pass through metal detectors Thursday morning following the discov- ery this week of a threat written on a wall inside the building. On Monday, police investigated the report of a threat someone had scrawled on a bathroom wall. Although police did not release information about the threat, some CHS students have said it invoked the Columbine tragedy. Law enforcement officers performed a search of the school building Wednesday night, said a school department em- ployee. A large number of police officers are expected to be at the school Thursday morning. Students have also been told they will not be allowed to bring book bags or backpacks to school Thursday.
  • 21. Chelmsford selectman sees potential savings with public-safety director By Rita Savard, rsavard@lowellsun.com Updated: 05/06/2010 08:27:08 AM EDT CHELMSFORD -- In the mid-'90s, it was a concept that divided the town -- hiring a public-safety director to replace the police and fire chiefs. Now the idea of appointing an administrator to oversee the town's emergency services has been put back on the table as the recession, and the departure of the town's longtime fire chief, Jack Parow, presents an opportunity for Chelmsford to streamline resources, said Selectman Eric Dahlberg. Dahlberg, who is also a Republican contender for the Third Middlesex District senate seat, asked fellow selectmen this week to revisit the idea. "What I'd like to see happen is that this be an option we at least consider," Dahlberg said. "The voters consistently direct us to think outside the box. This to me is something we should consider along the lines of possibly saving the town some money." A public-safety director or commissioner would serve as the administrative head of both the police and fire departments, possibly eliminating the need for two chiefs. Instead, there are typically two deputy chiefs appointed to run the day-to-day operations in each department. "Ultimately the whole goal is to save taxpayers' dollars while continuing to deliver services as efficiently and effectively as possible," Dahlberg said.. But a former selectman, who led the charge to strike down the measure 16 years ago, said bringing a public-safety director on board would be a waste of taxpayers' money by duplicating services that already exist. "In effect, (Town Manager) Paul Cohen is in charge of both departments. He is the public-safety director that both chiefs have to report to," said Bill Dalton, a Town Meeting representative who served on the Board of Selectmen for 15 years. "So if we already have a town manager who does the hiring and firing for those departments, and you'd still need two people who oversee those departments, hiring an additional administrator seems like adding just another person to the town's payroll. That isn't going to save money." Dalton spearheaded an effort in 1994 to reverse action taken by former Chelmsford Town Manager Bernie Lynch, who is now Lowell's city man- ager. At that time, Chelmsford had undergone a mass exodus of department heads due to retirements, including the police and fire chiefs and other top-ranking employees that served in each department. Lynch said he looked at other municipalities that had success using a public-safety director model and felt, by putting all managerial responsibili- ties of the police and fire departments under one person, that Chelmsford could save money by consolidating training and administrative re- sources in two areas. "You have a defense department in the United States that all the branches of the military fall under to coordinate resources," Lynch said. "On a local level, a public-safety director is along the same idea." By operating public safety with fewer managers earning six figure salaries, Lynch said, theoretically, the town might have been able to put more police patrols on the street. Lynch said his measure was approved by the Board of Selectmen at the time, and funding for the position was approved by Town Meeting. A public-safety director was even hired. John Fasana, a California resident who had served as a police officer in Los Angeles, a fire chief in San Francisco and had also been the head of Boston's EMS, was tapped for the position. But Lynch faced strong opposition from the Chelmsford Professional Fire Fighters union, which Dalton was president of. Feeling that Fasana's position was a waste of taxpayer's money, Dalton collected 2,500 signatures against the measure, and said he was en- couraged to run for the Board of Selectmen as a result. Dalton won the election and said his first vote as a selectman was to reject the town manager's reorganization. Although Lynch could have up- held his actions under the town's bylaw, his contract was also up that year. Going against the new board's wishes would have most likely pushed Lynch out of a job, along with Fasana, he said. Fasana, who had already resigned from a position in California, was paid $25,000 and let go before he had a chance to start his first day on the job. Members of the current Board of selectmen said they were open to discussing Dahlberg's suggestion. Adding that he'd "look into anything that doesn't cost the town money," Selectman Jon Kurland said he didn't think the model would fit a commu- nity of Chelmsford's size. "Usually you see those types of positions in smaller, more rural communities that have a volunteer fire department," Kurland said. "From my per- spective, I don't think it would be something economically beneficial for the town." Retired Police Chief Wayne Sampson, who is executive director of the Massachusetts Police Chiefs Association, said the public-safety director model is rare in Massachusetts, with a small number of communities, including Mendon and North Adams, utilizing it. "They're very clearly two different functions, except for the common feature of personnel and budget administration," Sampson said. State law also prohibits a police officer from performing a firefighter's duties. Because of that, public-safety director roles can also become the focus of political infighting depending on the background of the director. A director with a background in policing can leave firefighters feeling like they don't have one of their own at the helm and vice versa. "I just wanted to put it out there as a possible option," Dahlberg said. "In this economy we really need to examine any and all options to save money."
  • 22. Opposing 40B: Law draws sharp reactions By Chloe Gotsis/staff writer GateHouse News Service http://www.wickedlocal.com/chelmsford/newsnow/x1381033333/Opposing-40B-Law-draws-sharp-reactions Posted May 07, 2010 Chelmsford — Under Chapter 40B developers can be granted a comprehensive permit from a local zoning board of appeals that will allow them to circumvent local zoning bylaws. This aspect of the law has set of a firestorm of criticism beginning in the 1990s as more and more projects were built under the law. But for all of the negative criticism of 40B there are positive stories like the Gianninos, said Chelmsford Housing Authority Director David Hedi- son. “This family is a perfect example of what 40B is trying to do which is give people a chance to have a family in the town they grew up in and work in,” he said. . Craig Chemaly, director of operations for the Chelmsford-based Massachusetts Slow Growth Initiative, said the law doesn’t provide adequate an adequate amount of affordable housing and there are other state programs such as the Affordable Housing Trust Fund and the Residential Assistance for Families In Transition program that can. Chemaly attended a hearing a 40B hearing at the State House on Monday. “There’s just so much wrong with it,” he said, adding that Slow Growth has attempted to work with legislators to reform the law. “Unfortunately reform has proven itself to not be possible…The only way to create affordable housing is to repeal Chapter 40B and write a law that actually makes sense. There’s this misconception that affordable housing would go away if Chapter 40B is repealed.” John Belskis, chairman of the Coalition to Repeal 40B said the group originally started out to reform the law but after proposing close to 200 bills with reform and not one passing, the only answer is repeal. In an e-mail Belskis said the Coalition’s goal is for the state to have an effective housing law “not a developer’s welfare program,” as he called 40B. But Chelmsford Housing Authority Director David Hedison said Chelmsford will not be able to successfully create affordable housing develop- ments without 40B. “It’s really the only mechanism Chelmsford has for creating affordable homes,” said Hedison. “Our options are highly limited. I’m not sure how we would be able to get it done without 40B.” Hedison said the town can take a proactive approach and work with CHA and pick viable sites for housing and avoid using private developers. Without 40B the CHA’s CHOICE center, a 37-unit affordable housing complex for elders, would’ve never been funded, said Hedison. Belskis said that the state Joint Housing Committee had until Tuesday to pass a bill that was created in January after the Coalition collected enough signatures. But he said the lawmakers failed act on the bill and effectively killed it. As of press time Belskis said in an e-mail that he he planned on delivering a letter to the Secretary of State’s office requesting to place the peti- tion to repeal 40B on the November ballot. The coalition will then have to collect new signatures to ensure a spot on the ballot. “Our goal is to collect 20,000 new signatures to ensure ballot placement,” he wrote. ********************* http://www.townofchelmsford.us Lifeguards on duty from 10 am - 6 pm at Freeman Lake and Heart Pond beginning 6/26 - 8/29
  • 23. Eric Dahlberg Tom Christiano Suzanne Dahlberg Debbie Derry Santiago Rios Steve Roberts Eric Dahlberg Nipha Saeteng Roberts Nick DeSilvio Laurie Barb Belanger Myers Ken Skelley Dorothy Skelley Phil Stanway Eric Dahlberg's campaign Suzanne Dahlberg Janet party at Moonstones Askenburg Photos By Tom Christiano
  • 24. EXTRA   EXTRAS: Submitted by Barb Belanger-TM Rep PCT 7
  • 25. Chelmsford Cultural Council Call to Artists! The Chelmsford Cultural Council is issuing a call to artists for illustra- tions inspired by "Chelmsford" the poem on the history of Chelmsford written by Tom Ryan. The poem was commissioned by the Cultural Council for the Town's 350th anniversary in 2005. Click here for details and application. Deadline for entries - Friday, May 21, 2010 at 5 p.m. *************************************** Click here for information on Municipal Health Insurance Reform *************************************** Submitted by Mike Combs -TM Rep PCT6 On Wednesday, May 12th, the Progressive Democrats of Massachusetts (PDM) will host a State Budget workshop where we’ll learn about the policy choices (and trade-offs) ahead and how we can make our voices heard. Everyone, regardless of political affiliation, is invited to attend this free event. There will be a speaker from the Mass Budget and Policy Center (www.massbud- get.org) , a non-partisan group that conducts independent research and analysis of state budget and tax policies in Massachusetts. After the presentation, there will be a short training and activity to help people make their thoughts known to their legislators. What: State Budget Workshop When: Wednesday, May 12th, 7:00 PM Where: Chelmsford Police Station, 2 Olde North Rd Contact: Mike Combs, 978-677-6688 More info: http://www.progressivedemsofmass.org/events Light refreshments will be served.
  • 26. QUOTE OF THE WEEK: Mothers hold their children's hands for a short while, but their hearts forever. ~Author Unknown CLICK HERE
  • 27. In-Town Report NEWS LINKS Lowell Sun Chelmsford Independent Chelmsford Mass News Click here for the In-Town Report on Facebook Click here for the ITR archives ********************* CHRISTIANO PRODUCTIONS: POLITICAL JUNKIES SHOW: Thurs 7:30 PM Sundays 9:30 AM & Mondays 8:30 PM. POLITICALLY INCORRECT: Tues & Weds 8:30 PM; Thurs 7:00 AM; Sundays 11:00 AM Chelmsford Cable TV Channel 8 ********************* ROY EARLEY TOM CHRISTIANO Town Meeting Representative Precinct 6 Town Meeting Representative Precinct 9 In-Town Report: In-Town Report: Creator,Editor,compiler, Contributing writer,photographer,consultant Designer,writer,photographer and In-Town distribution

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