CITY OF WORCESTER

JOURNAL OF THE CITY COUNCIL

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Council Chamber

Convened: 7:04 P.M.

Adjourned: 10:16 P.M.


Mayor
Konstantina B. Lukes

 

www.ci.worcester.ma.us

City Manager
Michael V. O'Brien

City Auditor
James A. DelSignore

Councilors

Paul P Clancy JrBarbara G Haller
Dennis L Irish Philip P Palmieri
Michael C Perotto Joseph M Petty City Clerk
David J. Rushford
Gary Rosen Frederick C Rushton
Joffrey A Smith Kathleen M Toomey
 

City Hall - 455 Main Street Worcester, Massachusetts


1.

INVOCATION - Rev. Jose Encarnacion, Iglesia Cristiana de la Comunidad

2.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

3.

STAR SPANGLED BANNER - ALEXANDRA MILLS

4.

ROLL CALL- All present

5.

FIRST ITEM OF BUSINESS

5a.

Communication of the City Manager transmitting an update of Economic Development initiatives relative to development activity since the last monthly report.

Attachments

Referred to Public Works Committee, Public Service and Transportation Committee, Housing and Neighborhood Revitalization Committee, Commerce and Development Committee

 

5b.

Communication of the City Manager transmitting informational communication regarding the Economic Development Divisionís (EDD) small business retention and recruitment efforts and other coordinated City activities.

Attachments

Referred to Commerce and Development Committee

 

6.

ITEMS OF CITIZEN INTEREST

6a.

Mayor Lukes read a proclomation concerning Step It Up For Worcester Day.

 

7.

ITEMS OF DEPARTMENTAL OR EMPLOYEE INTEREST

8.

PETITIONS

8a.

Mayor Konstantina B. Lukes on behalf of Rose and Albert Rodrique request the repair of the sidewalks in front of 57 Sylvan St.

Attachments

Referred to Public Works Committee

 

8b.

John Rossetti request to rescind residential parking in Dustin St.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

8c.

Councilor Frederick C. Rushton on behalf of Elizabeth St. John request to install a "Caution Blind Person" sign in Sussex Lane.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

8d.

Councilor Frederick C. Rushton on behalf of Elizabeth St. John request to install a handicap parking sign in front of 9 Sussex Lane.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

8e.

Attorney Samuel DeSimone request the City install two (2) "15 minute parking only between noon and 10:00 P.M." parking space signs on the west side of Major Taylor Blvd. at the southerly end of the block between Thomas St. and Central St.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

8f.

Cheryl Martunas, WPI Chief of Police request to install pedestrian delineators in the following intersections: Institute Rd. and Boynton St., Institute Rd. and West St., Institute Rd. and Einhorn Rd., Institute Rd. and Trowbridge Rd. and Salisbury St. and the private way that was formerly West St.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

9.

ORDERS

9a.

Request City Manager prepare a response to the potential impact of proposals, made by surrounding towns, to enact more stringent guidelines and regulations regarding level 3 sex offenders. (Toomey)

Motion Haller to amend: Further, request City Manager address all outstanding Council Orders pertaining to sex offenders.

Attachments

Order adopted as amended

 

9b.

Request City Manager request Charter Communications establish a local telephone number so that city residents can access prompt, reliable, and supportive responses to their concerns and problems with television, internet, and telephone services. (Rosen)

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9c.

Consistent with Section 7-11 of the Worcester Home Rule Charter, request the City Council to place the following non-binding question on the November, 2007 Municipal Election Ballot: "Should legalized gaming be approved in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, I support the siting of any such legalized gaming activities within the City of Worcester." (Irish, Smith, Rosen, Palmieri, Perotto, Clancy, Toomey, Petty, Rushton)

Attachments

Order adopted on a roll call vote of 9 Yeas and 2 Nays (Yeas - Clancy, Irish, Palmieri, Perotto, Petty, Rosen, Rushton, Smith, Toomey) (Nays - Haller, Lukes)

 

9d.

Request City Manager meet with the Governor's Special Commission on Gaming immediately following City Councilís approval of the placement of the non-binding gaming question on the November 2007 ballot to advise the Commission of this action and urge consideration of Worcester as a siting location for gaming in accordance with the Commission's recommendations should the ballot question be approved in November. (Irish, Smith, Perotto, Clancy, Toomey, Petty, Palmieri)

Attachments

Order adopted on a roll call vote of 8 Yeas and 3 Nays (Yeas - Clancy, Irish, Palmieri, Perotto, Petty, Rosen, Smith, Toomey) (Nays - Haller, Rushton, Lukes)

 

9e.

Request City Manager provide City Council with options for converting non-owner occupied dwellings to the commercial tax rate. (Haller)

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9f.

Request City Manager provide City Council with options for charging a "user fee" to city employees who do not reside in Worcester. (Haller)

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9g.

Request City Manager provide the City Council with the effect of the projected city budget on Charter schools, e.g., budget deficits, number of teacher/aide layoffs, etc.(Haller)

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9h.

Request City Manager provide City Council with an updated report regarding "Destination Worcester" for the purposes of economic development. (Perotto)

Attachments

Tabled

 

9i.

Request City Manager provide City Council with a report concerning Beaver Brook bridges for the purpose of public safety. (Perotto)

Attachments

Tabled

 

9j.

Request City Manager report to City Council relative to the increase in Chapter 90 monies for the City of Worcester. (Clancy)

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9k.

Request City Manager report to City Council concerning the number of times during the past six months that Worcester Police have been removed from the west side to respond to needs in other sectors of the city. (Rushton, Smith)

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9l.

Request City Manager consider attending the Somerstat demonstration on Thursday, April 12th, 2007 with a member of his Administration, and further request that he provide the City Council with a commentary about itís applicability in Worcester subsequent to the demonstration. (Rushton)

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9m.

Request City Manager request the Police Chief to conduct speed surveillance in Burncoat St. between Ivernia Rd. and Mountain St. East. (Lukes)

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9n.

DECREE TO MAKE PUBLIC: CORINTH DR.

Attachments

Order adopted on a roll call vote of 7 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy, Palmieri, Perotto, Toomey absent)

 

9o.

DECREE TO MAKE PUBLIC: REARDON ST.

Attachments

Order adopted on a roll call vote of 7 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy, Palmieri, Perotto, Toomey absent)

 

9p.

STREET BETTERMENT ASSESSMENT: DIANA ST.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9q.

STREET BETTERMENT ASSESSMENT: GAYLORD ST.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

9r.

STREET BETTERMENT ASSESSMENT: WAYCROSS ST.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

10.

RESOLUTIONS

10a.

In order to create additional revenue for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts which could be made available to towns and cities for local aid and education thus providing property tax relief, the City Council of the City of Worcester does hereby urge expansion of legalized gaming in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. (Irish, Smith, Perotto, Clancy, Toomey, Petty, Rosen, Palmieri)

Attachments

Mayor Lukes supended the rules to allow John Reed, 4 Columbus St., Worcester to speak. Resolution adopted on a roll call vote of 8 Yeas and 3 Nays (Yeas - Clancy, Irish, Palmieri, Perotto, Petty, Rosen, Smith, Toomey) (Nays - Haller, Rushton, Lukes)

 

10b.

That the City Council of the City of Worcester hereby goes on record in support of Step It Up Worcester Day, April 14th, a day to act for Climate Stabilization by signing up for the Green Up electricity option. (Haller)

Attachments

Resolution adopted on a roll call vote of 11 Yeas and 0 Nays

 

11.

COMMUNICATIONS

11a.

David J. Rushford, City Clerk, transmitting communication acknowledging Peter Kush, an undergraduate student of Clark University, for his involvement at the City Clerk Office as a student intern and his statistical report and comments relative to the records of Worcester marriages for the year 1950.

Attachments

Placed on file

 

11b.

Department of Telecommunications & Energy transmitting NStar Gas Company's Condensed Financial Return of Year Ended December 31, 2006.

Attachments

Placed on file

 

11c.

James A. DelSignore, City Auditor, transmitting communication relative to a table identifying, by department, the number of applicants for disability pensions that have evidentiary hearings before the Worcester Retirement Board.

Attachments

Referred to Municipal Operations Committee

 

11d.

Michael V. O'Brien, City Manager, transmitting communication relative to Electronic Recycling Event.

Attachments

Placed on file

 

11e.

Michael V. O'Brien, City Manager, transmitting communication relative to the acquisition of the Major Taylor Boulevard Garage from the Worcester Redevelopment Authority (WRA) by the City.

Attachments

Referred to Commerce and Development Committee

 

12.

REPORTS OF THE COMMITTEE ON LAND USE

12a.

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON LAND USE Upon the Report of the Planning Board Upon the Petition of Attorney Donald O'Neil on behalf of Tony Nguyen request to amend the Zoning Map of the City of Worcester by extending the RL-7 zone line from its present location along the northerly side of Main St. across Main St. to encompass land located along the southerly side of Main St. at 1471-1485 Main St.: recommend to approve Petition as amended to delete lot #1485 Main St. and leave the parcel as RS-7 zone, accept the recommendation of the Planning Board and recommend passage of the accompanying proposed Ordinance.

Attachments

Voted to advertise proposed ordinance

 

12b.

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON LAND USE Upon the Report of the Planning Board Upon the Petition of Allyn Jones request the property located at 1097 Pleasant St. currently zoned RS-7 and BL-1.0 be changed in its entirety to BL-1.0: recommend to approve Petition as amended so that the BL-1.0 zone line runs east to west from the back of 4 Pamona Rd. across 1097 Pleasant St. beginning at a point 117+/- feet from the front line of the property, deny the recommendation of the Planning Board and recommend passage of the accompanying proposed Ordinance.

Attachments

Voted to advertise proposed ordinance

 

12c.

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON LAND USE Upon the Report of the Planning Board Upon the Petition of Robert McKeon request that Laureldale Rd. from Pleasant St. to the property line of the Tatnuck Country Club be added to the Official Map: recommend Petitioner be given leave to withdraw.

Attachments

Accepted

 

12d.

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON LAND USE Upon the Report of the Planning Board Upon the Petition of Barry Ward request zone change at 16 Bethany St. from RS-7 to BL-1.0: recommend Petition be denied.

Attachments

Accepted

 

12e.

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON LAND USE Upon the Report of the Planning Board Upon the Petition of Biodun Akande request to amend the City of Worcester Zoning Map by extending the RL-7 zone line from its westerly line on Stanley Rd. to include Lot 2 (containing approximately 8,922 sq. feet) of the property on 3 Beamon Ave.: recommend Petition be denied.

Attachments

Accepted

 

13.

REPORTS OF THE PLANNING BOARD

13a.

REPORT OF THE PLANNING BOARD Upon the Petition of John LeDoux request the City replace the private sewer line in Perkins St. with a public sewer line.

Attachments

Referred to Public Works Committee for a hearing

 

13b.

REPORT OF THE PLANNING BOARD Upon the Chairman's Order from the Ad Hoc Committee on Mill Street Business Corridor request to make public Gates Lane from the terminus of existing public portion to Mill St.

Attachments

Referred to Public Works Committee for a hearing

 

14.

TO BE ORDAINED

14a.

Amend Section 43 of Chapter 13 of the Revised Ordinances of 1996 to revise the Winter Parking Ban on Institute Rd. between Park Ave. and Haviland St. from a Both Sides Permanent Ban to a Standard Declared Ban.

Attachments

Ordained on a roll call vote of 8 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy, Perotto, Rushton absent)

 

15.

TABLED ITEMS

15a.

Order of Mayor Timothy P. Murray - That the ordinance relative to the Police Department License Board as it relates to taxi regulations be rescinded. (Tabled - Murray April 25, 2006)

Attachments

No action taken

 

15b.

Order of Councilor Barbara G. Haller and Councilor Gary Rosen - Request the City Manager take all steps to have the WRTA #11 bus rerouted to serve the Island part of Harding Street (south of Kelley Square) to take residents, especially the elderly, to and from the Route 20 Fair Shopping Plaza. Further request that this service be provided several times in the mornings and again in the afternoons, both outbound and inbound. This service was formerly provided by the old #4 Millbury City Line and eliminated on January 28th, 2006 creating a serious hardship and reduction in the quality of life for residents in the Green Island neighborhood. (Tabled - Haller August 29, 2006)

Attachments

No action taken

 

15c.

Chairman's Order from the Committee on Military Affairs - Request City Manager consider communicating to City Council a recommendation for funding section 2 of Chapter 157 of M.G.L. in the amount of $1.1 million. (Tabled - Clancy March 6, 2007)

Attachments

No action taken

 

15d.

Order of Councilor Frederick C. Rushton, Councilor Dennis L. Irish, Councilor Joseph M. Petty, Councilor Paul P. Clancy, Jr., Councilor Kathleen M. Toomey, Councilor Philip P. Palmieri, Councilor Michael C. Perotto and Councilor Joffrey A. Smith - Request City Manager request City Solicitor to draft an Ordinance that allows the City Council to suspend itís most recent pay raise and return to the previous level until the end of Fiscal Year 2008. (Tabled - Rushton March 13, 2007)

Attachments

Taken off the table and Motion read. Motion Rushton to amend: Further, request suspension of recent pay raise effective date be set for January 1, 2008. Order adopted, as amended on a roll call vote of 9 Yeas and 2 Nays (Yeas - Clancy, Irish, Palmieri, Perotto, Petty, Rushton, Smith, Toomey, Lukes) (Nays - Haller, Rosen) Reconsideration denied on a roll call vote of 2 Yeas and 8 Nays (Yeas - Rosen, Lukes) (Nays - Clancy, Haller, Irish, Palmieri, Petty, Rushton, Smith, Toomey) (Perotto absent)

 

15e.

Order of Mayor Konstantina B. Lukes - Request City Manager request the City Solicitor to draft an ordinance which permanently reduces the salary of the City Council to that amount which was in effect on January 9, 2007 and which ordinance eliminates any cost of living increase. (Tabled - Rushton March 13, 2007)

Attachments

Taken off the table and Motion read. Order denied on a roll call vote of 5 Yeas and 6 Nays (Yeas - Irish, Palmieri, Rosen, Smith, Lukes) (Nays - Clancy, Haller, Perotto, Petty, Rushton, Toomey) Reconsideration denied on a roll call vote of 2 Yeas and 8 Nays ( Yeas - Rosen Lukes) (Nays - Clancy, Haller, Irish, Palmieri, Petty, Rushton, Smith, Toomey) (Perotto absent)

 

16.

SUSPENSION OF RULES

16a.

Petition of VERIZON NEW ENGLAND, INC. for conduit location in: SHORE DR.

Attachments

Hearing set for April 24, 2007 - 7:00 P.M.

 

16b.

Petition of NATIONAL GRID for electric cable and conduit system in: PRESCOTT ST.

Attachments

Hearing set for April 24, 2007 - 7:00 P.M.

 

16c.

Motion-Perotto @ #5b CC - Request City Manager allocate $30,000.00 in marketing funds to notify businesses of the City's ability to retain businesses.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

16d.

Motion-Irish @ #5b CC - Request City Manager provide the City Council with a report which details the coordination efforts between the City Manager's Office of Economic Development and Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy Areas (NRSA) to retain businesses and to foster more cooperative efforts.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

16e.

Motion-Petty @ #9a CC - Request City Manager provide a report to the City Council pertaining to how many communities have passed sex offender legislation proposed by their Chief Executive Officer.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

16f.

Motion-Rosen @ #10a CC - Request City Manager provide the City Council with a report which divulges the possible use of the Worcester Airport as a gaming facility. Further, request that if MassPort were to purchase the Worcester Airport, would they be able to incorporate a gaming facility at the airport and reap the profits?

Attachments

Order adopted

 

16g.

Motion-Haller @ #10a CC - Request City Manager provide the City Council with a report which details the potential impacts (negative and positive) pertinent to prospective gaming facility locations in Central Massachusetts and effects it will have on the local economy .

Attachments

Order adopted

 

16h.

Motion-Rushton @ #15d CC - Request City Manager request that the Human Resources Director draft paperwork which will allow the Councilors to rescind their salary increases for the first 6 months of the 2008 calendar year if they wish to do so. Mayor Lukes moved to amend: Further, request City Manager provide the City Council with a report which details how the forfeiture monies will be appropriated.

Attachments

Order adopted as amended

 

16i.

Motion-Lukes @ # 16i CC - Request City Manager submit a copy of item # 11c from the April 10, 2007 agenda pertaining to applicants who have evidentiary hearings before the Worcester Retirement Board to the Superintendent of the Worcester Public Schools.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

16j.

Motion-Lukes - Suspension of Rules - Request City Manager report on the use or closure of the parking area at Southbridge and Madison Streets.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

16k.

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC WORKS Upon Transmitting informational Communication relative to the Gateway Park Public Street Decree: recommend Communication be referred to Planning Board.

Attachments

Accepted