Weekly New Roundup – 04/12/20
Covid-19 Precautions and Updates • Parking Lot at Bill’s Pizza to Close starting 4/16 in Preparation for Paving • Hopkinton Select Board Adopts Tax Relief Measures • School Committee votes to eliminate April vacation • Community Outreach Meeting for a proposed Marijuana Establishment • Joseph Bennett picked as new Hopkinton police chief • Join Us in Turning the Commonwealth Blue to Thank the Front Lines • See which of our communities have the highest, lowest U.S. Census response rates • Runners who can’t make 2020 Boston Marathon can get a refund because the race was postponed due to coronavirus • Select Board Actions Taken – 04/07/2020
Covid-19 Precautions and Updates
As of 11:00 a.m. on 4/10/20, Hopkinton’s Health Department is reporting 18 total confirmed COVID-19 cases; 7 of those cases are active, with 11 recoveries and zero deaths. We are now at the beginning of the anticipated “surge” in the Commonwealth (April 10 – April 20) and based on the latest models referenced by Governor Baker today, it’s looking more like the peak will be closer to April 20th. Cases are expected to continue to climb during this time, and local case numbers may not accurately reflect the infections in our community. The next two weeks will be critical in stopping the spread. Please stay home, and if you must go out, go out only for what you need and practice social distancing. Click below on the latest update from town boards, departments and new CDC guidelines.
View latest update from April 10, 2020
Real Estate Tax Extensions Update
The Town has elected to extend fourth quarter real estate taxes and tax exemption application due dates to 6/1/2020, in addition to waiving certain fees and interest on late payments. Click here for more info
Previous updates, additional information and resources can be found here: www.hopkintonma.gov/covid-19
Parking Lot at Bill’s Pizza to Close starting 4/16 in Preparation for Paving
Bill’s Pizza has advised the Town that work to begin re-pavement of their parking lot will commence shortly.
Please be advised that the parking lot adjacent to Town Hall, including both the entrance and exit, will be closed on Thursday, April 16 and Friday, April 17 as the contractor will be preparing the lot for paving. In the meantime, residents are asked to park, if necessary, in the on-street parking spaces on Main Street.
Hopkinton Select Board Adopts Tax Relief Measures
On April 7, 2020, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency, the Town of Hopkinton Select Board unanimously voted to adopt several tax relief provisions recently authorized in State law.
Specific changes include an extension of the due date for fourth-quarter real estate and personal property taxes from May 1, 2020 to June 1, 2020 and an extension of the due date for applications for property tax exemptions to June 1, 2020.
School Committee votes to eliminate April vacation
The School Committee voted at Thursday’s online meeting to eliminate April vacation, meaning the final day of school is scheduled for June 17.
Superintendent Carol Cavanaugh recommended the change.
“Because we started our remote instruction sort of full force on the sixth of April, this past Monday, if we do this for nine days, because we will still have Good Friday off [tomorrow], I think that to have four days then off after that would be a big interruption to the momentum that we have established,” she said. “Our attendance has been good, teaching and learning has been going well, so I would think it would not be in our best interest to interrupt teaching and learning at this time.”
Community Outreach Meeting for a proposed Marijuana Establishment
Community Outreach meeting for the proposed Independent Testing Laboratory is anticipated to be located 100 South Street is scheduled for Thursday May 7th, 2020 at 6:30 PM. The virtual Community Outreach Meeting will be available at the following link and phone number:
Link: Microsoft Teams Virtual Community Outreach Meeting
Phone Number: +1 413-240-4743
Conference ID: 429 135 160#
Hopkinton Select Board Appoints Joseph E. Bennett III as Hopkinton’s Chief of Police
Press Release: Hopkinton, MA (April 8, 2020) – Hopkinton’s Select Board unanimously voted on April 7th to appoint Deputy Police Chief Joseph E. Bennett III as Hopkinton’s Chief of Police subject to a successful contract negotiation.
RELATED NEWS ARTICLE:
Joseph Bennett picked as new Hopkinton police chief
On Tuesday, the Select Board named Deputy Police Chief Joseph Bennett as the town’s newest chief.
Bennett replaces Edward Lee, who resigned after six years with the department. Lee’s last day was on April 3. Bennett has been serving as acting chief.
Join Us in Turning the Commonwealth Blue to Thank the Front Lines
To mark what would be the 124th Boston Marathon this April, 35-year principal sponsor John Hancock, joined by the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.), Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh, call on the community to collectively share gratitude for the essential workforce who are risking their lives every day to fight COVID-19 by lighting their buildings blue, displaying signs of gratitude in their homes and showing support online.
John Hancock, the B.A.A., Governor Baker and Mayor Walsh are calling on others – from the business community to individual residents – to do the same by lighting their buildings, showing support online and displaying signs of gratitude in their homes.
Templates to print and color, or post online, reading: “You are essential. We are grateful.” are available here
See which of our communities have the highest, lowest U.S. Census response rates
Dispersed nationwide starting in March, the U.S. Census logs the number of people living in each household to determine their state’s representation in Congress.
Avoid the fine by filling out the Census online – the first time in its history of Census-taking – at 2020Census.gov, over the phone by calling 844-330-2020 or by paper through the mail. Phone numbers for those who speak a non-English language can be found on the Census Bureau’s website.
Want to see how many in your community have already filled out the form? We ranked the cities and towns in our coverage area from communities with the highest Census response rates to the lowest, according to the latest data from the U.S Census Bureau as of April 1
Runners who can’t make 2020 Boston Marathon can get a refund because the race was postponed due to coronavirus
The Boston Athletic Association will refund entry fees associated with the 2020 Boston Marathon because it was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The athletic association says it has never offered a refund option to official entrants.
All registered participants will remain entered in the event, scheduled for Monday, Sept. 14. But those runners who cannot participate in September, they will have the opportunity to receive a refund.
Select Board Actions Taken – 04/07/2020
Materials related to the meeting:
6:35 PM COVID-19 UPDATE – STATE OF EMERGENCY
3. The Select Board will receive an update from the Board of Health on the Town’s response to COVID-19. The Select Board will consider declaring a State of Emergency in the Town of Hopkinton.
The Select Board declared a State of Emergency in the Town of Hopkinton. (5-0)
View Video ~5 minutes
Covid-19 Update ~10 minutes
6:55 PM APPOINTMENT – POLICE CHIEF
4. The Select Board will review and meet internal candidates for the Police Chief position and consider appointing Hopkinton’s next Police Chief.
The Select Board accepted the Human Resources Director’s screening report and appointed Joseph Bennett to the position of Police Chief, subject to successful contract negotiations; and authorized the Town Manager and town legal team to commence negotiations. (5-0)
7:15 PM CONSENT AGENDA
The Select Board will consider approving the Minutes of the 3/12/20 and 3/17/20 meetings.
The Select Board will consider accepting the resignation of Maryanne Chambers from the Hopkinton Historic District Commission (Historical Society nominee); and affirming the Town Manager’s acceptance of Claire Wright’ s resignation as Hopkinton’s representative to the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC).
Supporting Exhibits: Maryanne Chambers Resignation ; Claire Wright’s Resignation.
View Agenda Packet – Pages 12-13
View Video ~3 minutes
- The Select Board approved the Minutes of the 3/12/20 and 3/17/20 meetings. (4-0)
- The Select Board accepted the resignations of Maryanne Chambers from the Hopkinton Historic District Commission and Claire Wright as the Town’s representative to the MAPC. (4-0)
7:20 PM COMMUNITY OUTREACH MEETING DISCUSSION – ATOZ LABORATORIES, INC.
7. PROPOSED MARIJUANA TESTING LABORATORY, 100 SOUTH STREET
The Select Board will consider a request by ATOZ Laboratories to hold the required Community Outreach Meeting virtually rather than in person, given the current public health State of Emergency.
Supporting Exhibit: ATOZ Laboratories, Inc. Request
View Agenda Packet – Pages 14-25
View Video ~4 minutes
The Select Board approved the request of ATOZ Laboratories to hold the Community Outreach Meeting remotely. (5-0)
7:30 PM TOWNE POUND, WEST MAIN ST. – RESTORATION REQUEST
8. The Select Board will review a request from citizen volunteers to restore the old Towne Pound on West Main St. In addition, a historic information sign, similar to those on the Center Trail and Echo Trail, will be installed. The property is under the jurisdiction of the Select Board.
Supporting Exhibit: Towne Pound Citizen Request
View Agenda Packet – Pages 26-31
View Video ~12 minutes
The Select Board approved the proposed work at the old Towne Pound. (5-0)
7:40 PM FY 2020 AND FY 2021 BUDGET UPDATES
9. The Select Board will consider FY 2020 and 2021 Budget updates.
View Video ~12 minutes
7:45 PM 2020 ANNUAL TOWN MEETING UPDATE AND ANNUAL TOWN ELECTION DATE
10. The Select Board will consider postponing the date of the Annual Town Election to June 29, 2020.
View Video ~12 minutes
- The Select Board, after consultation with the Town Manager and Town Clerk, postponed the date of the Annual Town Election from May 18, 2020 to June 29, 2020. (4-0)
- The Select Board, after consultation with the Town Manager and Town Clerk, postponed the date of the Democratic Party caucus for the Annual Town Election from April 10, 2020 to May 14, 2020 from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. (4-0)
- The Select Board, after consultation with the Town Manager and Town Clerk, postponed the date of the Republican Party caucus for the Annual Town Election from April 9, 2020 to May 15, 2020 from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. (4-0)
7:55 PM TOWN MANAGER REPORT
a. Main Street Corridor Project Update. The Select Board will consider:
- Voting to dedicate to the Main Street Corridor Project those Town-owned parcels that are under the care, custody, management and control of the Select Board.
- Voting to accept the dedication to the Main Street Corridor Project of those Town-owned parcels that are under the care, custody, management and control of the Cemetery Commission and the Park and Recreation Commission. 3. Voting to adopt and execute the Order of Taking, substantially as drafted, for the permanent and temporary easements needed for the Main Street Corridor Project and to authorize the Town Manager and Town Counsel to take any action necessary to effectuate these takings.
b. COVID-19 Related Administrative Items
Supporting Exhibits: Town Manager Report; Dedication of Municipal Parcels; Plan
View Agenda Packet – Pages 32-43
View Video ~22 minutes
- The Select Board voted to dedicate for the Main Street Corridor Project portions of Town-owned land under the care, custody, and control of the Select Board shown as “TE-57, PUE-39, TE-8, E-27, TE-42, TE-43, PUE-37, and TE-65” on a plan titled “SHOWING LOCATION OF EASEMENTS FOR THE MAIN STREET CORRIDOR PROJECT FOR THE PURPOSE OF RECONSTRUCTING MAIN STREET (ROUTE 135)” dated April 1, 2020, prepared by VHB, Inc., to be used for the purposes described in the document entitled “Dedication of Municipal Parcels”, and to adopt and to authorize the Chair of the Select Board to execute said “Dedication of Municipal Parcels” on behalf of the Board. (5-0)
- The Select Board voted to accept the dedication for the Main Street Corridor Project portions of Town-owned land under the care, custody, and control of the Cemetery Commission and the Park Page 3 and Recreation Commission shown as “TE-92, TE-93, TE-70, and TE-73” on a plan titled “SHOWING LOCATION OF EASEMENTS FOR THE MAIN STREET CORRIDOR PROJECT FOR THE PURPOSE OF RECONSTRUCTING MAIN STREET (ROUTE 135)” dated April 1, 2020, prepared by VHB, Inc., to be used for the purposes described in the documents entitled “Dedication of Municipal Parcels” which were executed by the Cemetery Commission and the Park and Recreation Commission, respectively. (5-0)
- The Select Board voted to adopt and execute the proposed Order of Taking, substantially as drafted, for all permanent and temporary easements required for the Main Street Corridor Project as described on a plan titled “SHOWING LOCATION OF EASEMENTS FOR THE MAIN STREET CORRIDOR PROJECT FOR THE PURPOSE OF RECONSTRUCTING MAIN STREET (ROUTE 135)” dated April 1, 2020, prepared by VHB, Inc., to be used for the purposes described in the proposed Order of Taking, and to authorize the Town Manager and Town Counsel to take any necessary actions to effectuate these takings. (5-0)
- The Select Board voted to extend the due dates for fourth quarter real estate and personal property taxes from May 1, 2020 to June 1, 2020. (5-0)
- The Select Board voted to extend the application deadline for tax exemptions from April 1, 2020 to June 1, 2020. (5-0)
- The Select Board voted to waive interest or other penalties on any late payment for real estate, personal property, or excise tax as well as betterment assessments or apportionment thereof, and any water rate or annual sewer use added to any tax payments with a due date on or after March 10, 2020, so long as payment is made by June 30, 2020. (5-0)
- The Select Board authorized the Town Manager to work with public safety officials, the Select Board and others to develop and implement a plan for managing the Boston Marathon start line area on April 20, 2020, including prohibiting access to the start line and parking in the vicinity of the startline. (5-0)
- The Select Board allowed the placement of a banner across Main Street by the Chamber of Commerce on or about April 20, 2020. (5-0)