Monthly Archives: December 2017

Citizen ATM warrant article for senior housing

Mike Sullivan share this morning the following citizen petition for an annual town meeting (ATM) warrant article that Mike received Friday from Tony Centore, Chair of the Senior Housing Study Committee.  Citizen petitions for ATM warrant article need ten signatures to qualify for inclusion in the town meeting warrant, and this petition contained seventy-five signatures.

The Medfield State Hospital Master Planning Committee is working towards a special town meeting (STM) in March 2018 where both Lot 3 and the Hinkley parcel are recommended to be developed as senior housing – a 42 unit 40B rental project on Lot 3 and a 12 unit ownership proposal for the South end of the Hinkley parcel, respectively.

VOTER PETITIONED ARTICLE FOR TOWN MEETING (D) To the Board of Selectmen: We, the undersigned voters of the Town of Medfield, hereby petition the Board of Selectmen pursuant to MGL Chapter 39, Section J 0, to insert the following article in the Warrant for the X_Annual Special Town Meeting to be held on April 24, 2018 To see if the Town will vote to: To determine whether the Town in order to expedite development along Ice House Rd. will vote to authorize the Board of Selectmen to remove Lot 1 (Hinkley Property) and Lot 3 from the control ofthe Medfield State Hospital Planning Committee and transfer said control to the Medfield Senior Housing Study Committee and the Council on Aging (COA) or other Town Board. Further to direct the Board of Selectman to expeditiously enter into a Local Initiative Project (LIP) on Town owned land on Lot 1 (Hinkley Property) off Ice House Rd. The land or any portion thereof shall be incorporated into said project at no cost by donation to the Affordable Housing Trust. The project shall contract with a developer to build appropriate and affordable Senior 65+ housing featuring ranch type condominiums with price points between $350,000 to $500,000 with preference for Medfield Seniors. Land will continue to be owned by the Town. In addition the details of said housing shall be subject to approval of the Senior Housing Study Committee and the Council on Aging. Or take any other action in relation thereto.

New town website

It is live today – http://www.town.medfield.net/.   Nice clean look, with easy to use interface.  And you can sign up to get notifications of meetings and agendas.

town website

The other Medfield

The Medfield in Maryland that appears to be a neighborhood or part of Baltimore, appears to have a nice looking sign (although I think we got more snow) –

Medfield, MD

Teachout leads Chamber

Medfield’s own Chris Teachout of Needham Bank to lead the Newton-Needham Regional Chamber – this from the Newton-Needham Regional Chamber today –

NNC logo

Teachout elected chair of chamber’s board 

 

The Newton-Needham Regional Chamber’s Board of Directors has elected Chris Teachout, vice president for Business Development at Needham Bank, as its new chair, effective Jan. 1.

Teachout

Teachout replaces Rachel Hillman Foy who has completed her two-year term and will remain on the board as immediate past chair.

 

 

“My  election as Chair of the Newton-Needham Regional Chamber is really significant as I am the fourth generation of my family to be raised in Needham,” said Teachout. “My fond memories of what it was like as a child growing up in this town are everlasting.

 

“Just as is the case with Newton, much has changed in my hometown and, in my opinion, for the better. The chamber has played a significant role in this evolution and I look forward, as the new chair, to continue with the progress we’ve made. It’s a very proud moment for me. I know my grandfather, who worked at Needham Bank, would be especially proud. I look forward to serving.”

 

The chamber board reelected Barry Brown, president at Mount Ida College as a vice chair and elected Samantha Sherman, chief development and external relations officer for Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital Needham and John Spino, a founding partner at Dwyer, Ruggieri, Spino and Goncalves to serve as vice chairs. Allison Yee, director of retail incubation at WS Development will serve on the executive committee as clerk and Bruce A. Gold, CPA, principal at ALL CPAs will serve as the chamber’s treasurer.

 

“I’m very grateful to Rachel for her leadership as our board chair for the past two years and am looking forward to working with Chris and our new executive board members as we continue our efforts to take this chamber to the next level,” said Greg Reibman, the chamber’s president.

Meetings yesterday

The Board of Selectmen held a meeting yesterday afternoon with seniors at The Center, for a no holds barred discussion of the options, status, and timing for senior housing.  I learned a lot.  Selectmen were supported by members of the Medfield State Hospital Master Planning Committee, who did the heavy carrying about explaining the status of that committee’s huge amount of work with respect to the redevelopment of the former MSH site.

Then Gus and I attended an evening regional selectmen meeting in Millis, attended by selectmen from six towns (see Medfield Press article below), where we discussed how each town is dealing with 40B, marijuana, and the new Federal stormwater rules.  I learned a lot there too.

20171207-BoS-Senior housing meeting

Region’s selectmen convene

MILLIS – Local officials from several towns led a discussion Thursday on the deficiencies and possible reform of affordable housing rules.

Selectmen from Medway, Ashland, Hopkinton, Holliston, Medfield and Millis – convened in Millis to discuss a number of issues of regional importance, such as stormwater management, retail marijuana regulation and the voting process at town meetings. The towns have met several times over the past year.

Medway Town Administrator Michael Boynton noted that the “40B” affordable housing legislation – which allows developers to circumvent certain local zoning bylaws if their project has an affordable housing component and the town falls below a 10 percent affordable housing threshold – first went into effect in 1969.

“It’s not going anywhere,” he said, noting that a ballot initiative to repeal the rule in 2010 had failed. He added that many towns, when they reach the 10 percent threshold, lose interest in reform.

Boynton said the town had experienced – in the last 18 months – both friendly and unfriendly 40B developments.

Medway Selectman Glenn Trindade said the legislation, as currently written, does not solve the affordable housing problem in the most efficient way. He said apartments are most in demand, but developers want to build houses. With apartments, he noted, the residents’ incomes are reviewed after a period of time to ensure they still quality; the same does not occur with houses or condos.

“What we’ve got with this system is someone hits the lottery (and is awarded an affordable house or condo), and you help one person,” he said.

Fellow Selectman Dennis Crowley said he was concerned about what happened to affordable housing units. He said the town had seen instances in which condo owners had bought their units, refinanced at the market value of the condo, pocketed the difference and left. He also cited incidents in which people owned the units, but moved out and rented them to other people.

“Nobody’s monitoring these units,” he said.

Boynton suggested several reforms to the law. One change would allow towns to prioritize senior housing, while another would tie developments to a municipality’s master plan.

State Rep. Shawn Dooley, R-Norfolk, noted the difficulty of changing the legislation. He said he was pursuing reforms that would allow a slightly higher-priced unit to count as a percentage of an affordable housing unity. He pointed at his hometown of Norfolk as an example of where such housing is needed.

“We’re losing teachers, firefighters and police officers – they can’t afford to live in town,” he said. “We have (affordable housing) at $130,000, and the next house up is $500,000.”

Mike Gleason can be reached at 508-634-7546 or mgleason@wickedlocal.com. For news throughout the day, follow him on Twitter @MGleason_MDN.

Election

I started my re-election campaign this morning by pulling the nomination papers.  More soon –

Nomination papers_Page_1

75 High Street

 

Medfield Children's Center bld

I was informed at the Board of Selectmen meeting last night that the owners of the Medfield Children’s Center may be abandoning their planned use of the 75 High Street site (rendering shown above), for which they have been seeking site plan approval from the planning board.  I was told that the owners have located a preferred location for the Medfield Children’s Center that is on Rte. 27, but at the other side of town.