Category Archives: Town Services

Your tax bill

The Division of Local Services (DLS) of the Massachusetts Department of Revenue sends me emails with lots of data.  I was especially interested to see our colleagues in pain on the attached chart of what towns pay for property taxes.  Look at it on-line here

FY19AvgSFTBAmount

This lists the towns paying the ten highest and lowest property taxes – we must be just off the high list:

tax bills-highest-2019

This was that same list from last year (which makes me wonder what sources of revenue Concord and Sudbury found to be able to lower their taxes):

tax bills-highest -fy18

Town House Phone System

Email from Kristine Trierweiler yesterday afternoon –

medfield town house

Phone system went down earlier today. IT dept has been working and it was determined a piece of Verizon equipment in the Town House has failed. Verizon will be on site at 8 AM Tuesday to try and resolve the issue. 

Kristine Trierweiler

Assistant Town Administrator
Town of Medfield

Mike Sullivan retiring in January

Mike sullivan

Michael Sullivan announced at the Board of Selectmen meeting on Tuesday that he will be retiring in January, 2019.  Mike will have served as the Town Administrator for 44 years, and he has been the longest serving town administrator in the state for almost the last ten years.  Prior to Mike being hired, the Medfield employed an executive secretary, so Mike is also the town’s one and only town administrator to date.

This selectman has asked Mike to write down all he knows about the town (and maybe its residents), as he has a huge institutional memory of what happened and why, all in his head.

Mike was educated at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and he has a tremendous understanding of and facility with the town finances and budgets.  I have come to think that he can almost run the  budget process off the cuff, especially where he has done it so many times and has seen so many things in those four decades of being in charge of our town.

Mental health referral service

The William James Interface Referral Service

The School Department and the town signed up with The William James Interface Referral Service, which is a mental health referral service for any resident.  Interface phones are answered by mental health professionals, and they match callers with appropriate clinical staff.  Interface does the legwork, and makes referrals based on the variables. The service became available for Medfield residents November 1.  See the Interface website for other resources – William James Interface Referral Service
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Interface is live

Interface, the mental health referral service brought to town by the combined efforts of the schools and police is now operational, and residents can get services.

Interface

The following is from the Superintendent’s blog  –

This post will highlight our new partnership with Interface Referral Service

Medfield Public Schools and Town of Medfield Collaborate to Fund Interface

 

We are pleased to announce a new referral service for all students and residents of Medfield. The Medfield Public Schools and the Town of Medfield have teamed up with William James College to provide a referral service that provides a wide range of valuable resources related to mental health and wellness for the benefit of children, adults and families, as well as educators and mental health professionals.

In addition to the resources on their website, the William James Interface Referral Service maintains a mental health and wellness referral helpline Monday through Friday, 9 am-5 pm, at 888-244-6843 (toll free). This is a free, confidential referral service for individuals across the lifespan living in Medfield. Callers are matched with licensed mental health providers from their extensive database. Each referral meets the location, insurance, and specialty needs of the caller. More information about the service and terms of confidentiality can be found here on the new Interface- Medfield page.

 

Chip seal

chip seal

None of prefer the chip seal treatment of our side streets, but given the cost differential, I have come to accept it as a cost effective solution.  Please understand that residents are free to opt at the annual town meeting (ATM) to vote to pave streets with asphalt instead of using chip seal.  All spending decision ultimately belong to us, the residents, at our ATM. –

Since I recently had a resident question me about the use of chip seal on his street and since I have historically heard the same questions, I asked our DPW Director, Maurice Goulet,  if he could quantify the cost savings to share with residents.

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Pete,

Below is a comparison of Chip Sealing roadways vs. Pavement Overlay and/or Mill and Overlay as requested.

Consider a scenario of 1 mile of roadway that is 20 feet wide at current contractor prices:

5,280 feet long X 20 feet wide / 9 = 11,733 square yards

 

$24,639 – chip seal

$69,922 – pavement overlay

(65% savings)

(pavement overlay does not include raising structures such as catch basins, manholes and gates, and reconstructing driveway aprons affected by raising pavement elevation, pavement elevation changes also creates new drainage issues)

 

Overlaying on a distressed roadway develops reflective cracking through the new surface within a few years affecting longevity of the surface. Milling (grinding) and overlay would then be considered as the preferred method.

 

$24,639 – chip seal

$91,628 – mill and overlay

(73% savings)

 

Please let me know if you have any questions. Hope this is helpful.

Maurice G. Goulet

Director of Public Works

Medfield, Massachusetts

 

Department of Public Works

55 North Meadows Road

Medfield, MA 02052

(508) 359-8597 office

(508) 359-4050 fax

mgoulet@medfield.net

www.town.medfield.net

Green Community recognition 4/12

The Medfield Energy Committee was tenacious, working hard over many years to position Medfield to become a Green Community, by satisfying the five required criteria, most recently by crafting a five year plan for a further 20% reduction by the town government’s energy use – that was filed and accepted by DOER over the winter.  The DOER invitation to the Green Community designation event appears below.  The five year plan was a “further” reduction, because the Medfield Energy Committee already had affected over a 30% energy use reduction since MEC first started its work.

It turns out that saving the planet also helps to save the town money.

And, don’t forget that qualifying as a Green Community also gets the town a $148,000 DOER grant, as well as access to future ongoing competitive DOER grants. So doing the right thing also earns the town money.

Westwood used one of the DOER competitive grants ($250,000) to buy and convert all its streetlights to LED fixtures.

Our own streetlight purchase ($1) and LED conversion (in round numbers, about $100,000) is a warrant article at our upcoming town meeting.  In general terms the town would spend about $100,000 to buy and convert to LED’s, get a now available, time limited $30,000 DOER grant to do so, and save about $30,000/year in future reduced electricity charges, for a pay back of the cost to convert in less than three years.

20170412-DOER-GC Event Invitation Medfield