Weekly News Roundup – 07/19/2020
Covid-19 Updates & Precautions • Public Notices • Select Board approves Sweeney’s promotion to senior accounting manager/town accountant • School Committee announces office hours • Planning Board roundup: More tweaks to proposed solar project off Frankland Road • As woods give way to solar farms, state to issue controversial rules that could harm solar industry
Covid-19 Updates & Precautions
This page provides information, maps and resources about the coronavirus response in our local area.
As of 7/16/20, Hopkinton’s Health Department is reporting 131 total confirmed COVID-19 cases; 0 of those cases are active, with 119 recoveries and 12 deaths. You can see historical tracking and updates on Hopkinton’s Community Impact Dashboard
The most recent update from July 17th includes:
July 17th Update
- Mental Health Resources – Reminder
The update from July 15th includes:
- Massachusetts Department of Public Health COVID-19 weekly Public Health Report
- Covid-19 Reopening Compliance
- Hopkinton DPW to resume White Metal Day
Cedar Street Construction begins today, to last approximately 3 weeks
Crack Sealing work is scheduled to begin on Monday July 13
Crack Sealing work is scheduled to begin on Monday July 13 on the following streets. One lane of traffic will be open at all times. Work is expected to take approximately two weeks. Works hours will be 7am-3pm. Please do not park any vehicles in the street as it will prevent the contractor from completing the work.
White Metal Day Collection resumes operations on Saturday July 25
White Metal Day Collection resumes operations on Saturday July 25, 2020.
Select Board approves Sweeney’s promotion to senior accounting manager/town accountant
At a brief Select Board meeting Tuesday night, the board unanimously approved the hiring of Ben Sweeney as senior accounting manager/town accountant.
Town manager Norman Khumalo had high praise for Sweeney. Khumalo pointed out that Sweeney, working with department heads, submitted applications to 27 competitive grant programs and acquired 13 grants worth $3.6 million, with eight applications still awaiting decisions. “That’s a very high strike ratio,” Khumalo noted.
School Committee announces office hours
The School Committee announced it will hold weekly Zoom office hours leading up to the start of the school year to provide an opportunity for the community to ask questions, raise concerns, or provide feedback on school matters. Each meeting will be hosted by two School Committee members.
Planning Board roundup: More tweaks to proposed solar project off Frankland Road
At its meeting Monday night, the Planning Board continued a public hearing regarding a proposed commercial solar photovoltaic installation off Frankland Road, the former Liberty Mutual site.
One of those items was concern over the potential effect of the project on nearby residential wells. Adam Coasta, an attorney working on behalf of Seaboard Solar, said the company didn’t believe there would be any effect on well water because of the nature of the project and that there would be no extensive excavation needed. However, the company did reach out to the town’s Health Department director, Shaun McAuliffe, and health agent Bryan Besso for their opinions. Both concluded they did not see this project having any negative impact on wells.
As woods give way to solar farms, state to issue controversial rules that could harm solar industry
Massachusetts has been a national leader in solar power and now boasts more of the renewable energy than most other states. But it has come at a cost to forests and woodlands, and environmental advocates — not a group ordinarily prone to voicing doubts about renewable sources — say misguided state incentives have encouraged building solar farms on undeveloped land.
Now, with the coronavirus already causing major job losses and great uncertainty in the solar industry, state officials are planning to issue new rules that will sharply limit where solar farms can be built.