CITY OF WORCESTER

JOURNAL OF THE CITY COUNCIL

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Esther Howland Chamber

Convened: 4:16 P.M.

Recessed at 6:40 P.M. Reconvened to Open Session: 7:18 P.M. Recessed to Finance Committee for Budget: 7:46 P.M. Reconvened to Open Session to Adjourn: 11:54 P.M.


Mayor
Konstantina B. Lukes

 

www.worcesterma.gov

City Manager
Michael V. O'Brien

City Auditor
James A. DelSignore

Councilors

Paul P. Clancy Jr. William J. Eddy
Michael J. Germain Barbara G. Haller
Philip P. Palmieri 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.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

2.

STAR SPANGLED BANNER - ALL SAINTS CHURCH CHOIR

3.

ROLL CALL - All present with Mayor in the chair except Councilors Clancy, Rushton and Toomey. Councilor Rushton arrived at 4:41 p.m. and Councilor Toomey arrived at 5:28 P.M.

4.

HEARING & ORDER

4a.

MASSACHUSETTS ELECTRIC COMPANY for cable and conduit locations: FOSTER ST., COMMERCIAL ST., EXCHANGE ST. AND CENTRAL ST.

Granting permission to MASSACHUSETTS ELECTRIC COMPANY for cable and conduit locations on: FOSTER ST., COMMERCIAL ST., EXCHANGE ST. AND CENTRAL ST.

Attachments

Hearing Held and Order adopted

 

5.

FIRST ITEMS OF BUSINESS

5a.

Order of Councilor Joffrey A. Smith and Councilor Philip P. Palmieri - Request City Manager consider allocating Fiscal Year 2010 capital dollars to the effort to replant the Burncoat and Greendale neighborhoods city street trees hardest hit by both the Asian Long-horned Beetle and the December, 2008 ice storm. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Order adopted

 

5b.

Order of Councilor Joffrey A. Smith - Request City Manager work with abutters on West Boylston St including the railroad and Saint Gobain along with the city to clean the area of overgrown brush and trash which has negatively impacted the quality of life in that area. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Order adopted

 

5c.

Order of Councilor Michael J. Germain - Request City Manager consider lengthening the tenure of the constables to 3 years as opposed to the current 1 year term; thus streamlining the process for all involved. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Order adopted

 

5d.

Order of Mayor Konstantina B. Lukes, Councilors Gary Rosen, Frederick C. Rushton, Joffrey A. Smith, Michael J. Germain - Request City Manager report on the feasibility and costs/savings of merging the school departmentís human resources department with the cityís human resources office. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Motion Petty to amend: Further, request City Manager ask the Superintendent of Schools to provide report concerning the feasiblity of merging human resource departments and also to include merging of other like departments and services. Mayor Lukes moved to suspend the rules to allow two citizens to speak - Accepted Speakers: Tracy Novick, Worcester resident & Larry Raymond, Worcester resident Order adopted as amended

 

5e.

Order of Councilor Philip P. Palmieri Jr. and Councilor Gary Rosen - Request City Manager request the Commissioner of Public Works and Parks to make adjustments to the traffic lights to alleviate the hazardous conditions, traffic backup and driver frustration when motorists attempt to make a left turn from Shrewsbury St. onto Adams St. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Order adopted

 

5f.

Order of Councilor Gary Rosen - Request City Manager request Commissioner of Public Works and Parks alleviate the hazardous conditions, traffic backup and driver frustration by changing the arrows painted on both directions of May St. at Park Avenue so that the left lane becomes left turn only while the right lane is for both straight-through and right turn traffic. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Motion Petty: Request Order be amended to a Petition and referred to the Traffic & Parking Committee - Accepted (See item #13a)

 

5g.

Order of Councilor Gary Rosen - Request City Manager report to City Council concerning what rules and procedures are in place dealing with individuals and groups, including children, who solicit money from motorists at busy and dangerous city intersections. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Motion Rosen to amend: Further, request amendment to existing Ordinance to change the minimum age from 16 to 18 years old. Order adopted as amended

 

5h.

Order Councilor Gary Rosen - In light of the closing of the Office on Disabilities, request the City Manager report to City Council concerning the city's ability and plans to provide services and referrals to residents with disabilities and their families. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Order adopted

 

5i.

Order of Councilor Gary Rosen - Request City Manager report to City Council concerning service cuts that might be made in bus, commuter rail and air transportation (Direct Air) and what their effects would be on Worcester and area residents. (Tabled - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off table - Order adopted

 

6.

ITEMS OF CITIZEN INTEREST

6a.

Mayor Lukes read a Proclamation declaring May 3rd to May 9th, 2009 as Children's Mental Health Week. Councilor Rosen presented the proclamation to the group of children representing Familes in Central Mass.

 

6b.

Mayor Lukes read a Proclamation declaring Saturday, May 9, 2009 as National Food Drive of Letter Carriers Day. Councilor Eddy presented the proclamation to Norman LaFlash.

 

7.

ITEMS OF DEPARTMENTAL OR EMPLOYEE INTEREST

8.

PETITIONS

8a.

Councilor Joffrey Smith on behalf of Russell Oliver and Todd Emmons request that the City of Worcester remove from the Official Map that section of Assumption Ave. which travels from the western most intersection of Hyde St. to the western most intersection of Emerson Rd.

Attachments

Referred to Planning Board

 

8b.

Attorney Joe Boynton on behalf of Steven & Irene John request to extend the BL-1.0 zone to encompass 9 Ormond St which is currently zoned RG-5.

Attachments

Referred to Planning Board

 

8c.

Donald Perron et al request the City reopen an eight to ten foot portion of the former right of way to Lake Quinsigamond at the Bridle Path pumping station .

Attachments

Referred to Public Works Committee

 

8d.

Jeffrey Jennings request sidewalk repair in front of 6 Cutting Ave.

Attachments

Referred to Public Works Committee

 

8e.

Marsha Hovenesian request a "Right Turn Only" sign be installed on May St. (at the intersection of Park Avenue) in the westbound right lane.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

8f.

Marsha Hovenesian request special turn signals be installed on the traffic lights on Park Avenue in both the southbound and northbound directions for cars turning from Park Avenue onto May St.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

8g.

Matt Doyle of Worcester Donuts Inc. request the installation of a Commercial Loading Zone in the north side of Nebraska St. from the corner of Envelope Terrace to the driveway of Dunkin Donuts.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

8h.

John Kickham request that a sign be placed at 304 Shrewsbury St. to deter people from blocking the driveway.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

9.

COMMUNICATIONS OF THE CITY MANAGER

 

9.1

APPOINTMENTS
Non-City Council Confirmation
A.

Transmitting Informational Communication Relative to the Appointment of Constables for Calendar Year January 2009 through December 2009.

Attachments

Placed on file

 
B.

Transmitting Informational Communication Relative to the Appointment of Robert Diaz to the Worcester Redevelopment Authority.

Attachments

Placed on file

 
 

9.2

APPOINTMENTS
City Council Confirmation
 

9.3

EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF THE CITY MANAGER
Election Commission Division
 

9.4

DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN RESOURCES
A.

Transmitting Informational Communication Relative to an Update on the Health Insurance Dependent Care Audit Process.

Attachments

Referred to Municipal Operations Committee

 
 

9.5

OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Economic Development Division
A.

Transmitting Communication Relative to a Permitting Guidebook Entitled "Building in Worcester: A Developer's Guide."

Attachments

Referred to Economic Development Committee

 
B.

Transmitting Informational Communication Relative to the City's Designation as a Platinum Community by the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council.

Attachments

Referred to Economic Development Committee

 
 

9.6

OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Neighborhoods and Housing Development
 

9.7

OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Planning and Regulatory Services Division
A.

Transmitting Communication Relative to the Citywide Energy Savings Audit.

Attachments

Referred to Economic Development Committee

 
 

9.8

OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Workforce Development Operations Division
A.

Request City Council Review, Deliberation, Adoption of a Resolution to File and Accept Funds from the Commonwealth Corporation for the 2009 YouthWorks Summer Jobs Program.

Attachments

Resolution adopted

 
 

9.9

OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Central Massachusetts Regional Employment Board
 

9.10

OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Youth Opportunities Division
 

9.11

OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Worcester Regional Airport Commission Division
A.

Request City Council Review, Deliberation, and Adoption of a Resolution to File and Accept Federal Aviation Administration Emergency Material Arresting System grants.

Attachments

Two (2) Resolutions Adopted on a roll call vote of 9 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy, Palmieri absent) Mayor Lukes moved to suspend the rules to allow reconsideration - Approved on roll call vote of 9 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy, Palmieri absent) Reconsideration Denied on a roll call vote of 0 Yeas and 9 Nays (Clancy, Palmieri absent)

 
 

9.12

OFFICE OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Cable Services Division
 

9.13

DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND PARKS
Engineering and Architectural Services Division
 

9.14

DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND PARKS
Operations Division
A.

Transmitting Communication Relative to the Ice Storm Debris Collection Update.

Attachments

Recommitted to the City Manager

 
 

9.15

DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND PARKS
Parks Division
A.

Transmitting Informational Communication Relative to the Tree City USA and Growth Award from the National Arbor Day Foundation.

Attachments

Placed on file

 
 

9.16

FIRE DEPARTMENT
 

9.17

POLICE DEPARTMENT
 

9.18

DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNICATIONS
 

9.19

LICENSE COMMISSION
 

9.20

DEPARTMENT OF INSPECTIONAL SERVICES
Administration
 

9.21

DEPARTMENT OF INSPECTIONAL SERVICES
Building and Zoning Division
 

9.22

DEPARTMENT OF INSPECTIONAL SERVICES
Housing and Health Inspections Division
 

9.23

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Administration
 

9.24

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Disability Division
 

9.25

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Elder Affairs Division
 

9.26

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Human Rights Division
A.

Request to Accept a Donation, with Gratitude in the Amount of Two Thousand Dollars ($2,000.00) from the Anti-Defamation League.

Attachments

Order adopted with gratitude

 
 

9.27

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Human Services Division
A.

Request City Council Review, Deliberation, and Adoption of a Resolution to File and Accept a Federal Housing and Urban Development Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program Grant.

Attachments

Resolution adopted

 
 

9.28

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Public Health Division
A.

SUPPLEMENTAL: Transmitting Informational Communication Relative to the Division of Public Health

Attachments

Referred to Finance Committee

 
 

9.29

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Public Library
A.

Recommend that City Council Accept with Gratitude, a Donation in the Amount of One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) from Mary E. Lane to the Worcester Public Library.

Attachments

Resolution adopted with gratitude

 
 

9.30

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Veterans' Services Division
 

9.31

PUBLIC SCHOOL DEPARTMENT
 

9.32

LAW DEPARTMENT
 

9.33

DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCE
Assessing Division
 

9.34

DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCE
Budget Office Division
A.

Transmitting Responses to Questions Posed at Finance Committee Meetings of April 7, 2009 and April 14, 2009.

Attachments

Referred to Finance Committee

 
B.

SUPPLEMENTAL: Transmitting Update Relative to the Fiscal Year 2009 Budget.

Referred to Finance Committee

 
 

9.35

DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCE
Purchasing Division
 

9.36

DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCE
Technical Services Division
 

9.37

DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCE
Treasury and Collections Division
 

9.38

FINANCE ITEMS
Capital Transfers
A.

Recommend that One Hundred Seventy Three Thousand Seven Hundred Fifty Dollars And No Cents ($173,750.00) be transferred from Loan Account #91C793, Golf Improvements, and be appropriated to Golf Account #71C702, Green Hill Golf Improvements, to fund expenses associated with electrical, plumbing and heating improvements.

Attachments

Order adopted on a roll call vote of 9 Yeas and 1 Nay (Yeas - Eddy, Germain, Haller, Palmieri, Petty, Rosen, Rushton, Smith, Toomey) (Nay - Lukes) (Clancy absent)

 
 

9.39

FINANCE ITEMS
Operational Transfers
A.

Recommend that Two Thousand Nine Hundred Dollars And No Cents ($2,900.00) be transferred from Account #04S616, Cable Services Revenues, and be appropriated to Account #680-92120, Technical Services Other Personal Services, to fund consulting services associated with the City-wide network replacement.

Attachments

Order adopted on a roll call vote of 10 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy absent)

 
B.

Recommend that Recommend that One Hundred Thousand Dollars ($100,000.00) be transferred from Account #663-96000, Health Insurance and appropriated to Account # 172-96000, Unemployment Compensation, for payment of unemployment claims in FY09 related to the City's recent personnel reductions.

Attachments

Order adopted on a roll call vote of 10 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy absent)

 
 

9.40

FINANCE ITEMS
Prior Year
 

9.41

FINANCE
Loan Orders
A.

Recommend the adoption of a Loan Order in the amount of One Million One Hundred Twenty Five Thousand Dollars And No Cents ($1,125,000.00) be appropriated to Account #41S627, Tree Branch Removal, for the purpose of payment of all cost related to the December 2008 Ice Storm.

Attachments

Voted to advertised proposed Loan Order on a roll call vote of 10 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy absent)

 
 

9.42

MISCELLANEOUS AGENDA TRANSMITTALS
A.

Transmitting Communication Relative to Fiscal Year 2010 Budget Impact Statements for the Division of Human Resources, Division of Public Health, Division of Elder Affairs, Office of the City Manager, and Worcester Public Library.

Attachments

Referred to Finance Committee

 
B.

Transmitting Communication Relative to the City's Response to the Swine Flu Outbreak.

Attachments

Referred to Public Health and Human Services Committee for the May 7, 2009 meeting

 
10.

COMMUNICATION

10a.

Roberta Schaefer, Ph.D, President and CEO of the Worcester Regional Research Bureau transmitting Benchmarking Public Safety in Worcester: 2009

Attachments

Referred to Public Safety Committee

 

11.

TABLED UNDER PRIVILEGE

11a.

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON MUNICIPAL OPERATIONS Upon the Communication of the City Manager respectfully requesting City Council review, consideration, and adoption of a Reorganization of the Departments, Boards, and Commissions of the City of Worcester: recommend passage of the accompanying proposed Ordinance. (Haller - April 28, 2009)

Attachments

Taken off the Table & Voted to advertise proposed ordinance on a roll call vote of 10 Yeas and 0 Nays (Clancy absent)

 

12.

TABLED ITEMS

12a.

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

 

12b.

Grant permission to NATIONAL GRID for conduit system in KANSAS ST. (Tabled - September 18, 2007)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12c.

Order of Mayor Konstantina B. Lukes - Request City Manager report to City Council whether a claims process exists which is available to commercial users who experience electric power outages and surges caused by National Grid. (Tabled - Lukes February 26, 2008)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12d.

Order of Mayor Konstantina B. Lukes - Request City Manager report on the number and location of National Grid equipment stations located on public property, whether the City receives any revenue from the use of public land, and if not, whether the city can charge for said use. (Tabled - Lukes February 26, 2008)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12e.

Petition of NATIONAL GRID for cable and conduit system in: PLANTATION ST., CLARENDON ST. & ALMONT AVE. (Tabled - Palmieri March 18, 2008)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12f.

Proposed Ordinance amending the Montvale Historic District by the adoption of a new map enlarging the District. (Tabled Under Privilege - Palmieri March 25, 2008)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12g.

Order of Councilor Michael J. Germain - Request City Manager consult with the Worcester Sharks regarding the possible management and redevelopment of the Charles Buffone Arena Ice Skating Rink on Lake Ave. (Tabled - Palmieri October 1, 2008)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12h.

Order of Councilor Michael J. Germain - That the City Council of the City of Worcester hereby accept and adopt Section 19 of the Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 32B, allowing for coalition bargaining for health benefits in the City of Worcester. (Tabled - Lukes October 21, 2008)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12i.

Order of Councilor Frederick C. Rushton - Request City Manager request the City Solicitor to report to City Council what basis the City is using to delay the public records request by the Worcester Telegram in light of the Globe Newspaper Company v. Commissioner of Education, 439 Mass. 124 (2003) ruling whereby the Supreme Judicial Court ruled public records must be released for inspection and copying without unreasonable delay, that is, within ten days of the receipt of a request for them. (Tabled - Haller November 25, 2008)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12j.

Resolution of Mayor Konstantina B. Lukes - That the City Council of the City of Worcester hereby supports the City Manager in seeking 0% increases in the FY2010 collective bargaining contracts; and be it further resolved that the City Council supports the City Manager in seeking the previously detailed 75/25 contribution rate and the co-pay changes.(Tabled - Haller January 27, 2009)

Attachments

No action taken

 

12k.

Petition of MASSACHUSETTS ELECTRIC COMPANY and VERIZON NEW ENGLAND, INC. for a joint pole location: BROOKLINE ST. (Tabled - Eddy April 7, 2009)

Attachments

No action taken

 

13.

SUSPENSION OF RULES

13a.

PETITION - Councilor Gary Rosen request Commissioner of Public Works and Parks alleviate the hazardous conditions, traffic backup and driver frustration by changing the arrows painted on both directions of May St. at Park Avenue so that the left lane becomes left turn only while the right lane is for both straight-through and right turn traffic.

Attachments

Referred to Traffic and Parking Committee

 

13b.

Motion Eddy @ #9.14A CM - Request City Manager consider exploring a process to begin removing December 13, 2008 ice storm debris.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

13c.

Motion Germain, Rushton and Toomey @ #9.28A CM - Request the City Manager consider at a minimum delaying the laying-off of the Public Health Nurses at least until the swine flu threat has either subsided or been addressed comprehensively by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health

Attachments

Referred to Finance Committee

 

13d.

Motion Germain and Rushton @ #9.42B CM - Request City Manager discuss with the Superintendent of the Worcester Public Schools the possiblity of communicating with the parents of students through Connectin or any other efficient and thorough means of communicating the current public health threat.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

13e.

Motion Germain - Suspension of Rules - Request the City Manager inform the City Council why the city chose to mail excise tax bills this year without paying to have them forwarded to a new address or a Winter address and also report the difference per piece that was saved for paying for forwarding mail.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

13f.

Motion Germain - Suspension of Rules - Request the City Manager provide the City Council with the number of excise tax bills that were returned this year undeliverable as addressed.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

13g.

Motion Germain - Suspension of Rules - Request the City Manager provide the City Council with the amount of interest and demand charges that have been collected this year from excise tax billings.

Attachments

Order adopted

 

13h.

Motion Rosen - Suspension of Rules - Request the City Manager refer the future model of public health services in Worcester, including all recommendations made by the Task Force, to the City Council for community input through public hearings by the Council's Public Health & Human Services Committee.

Attachments

Referred to Finance Committee

 

13i.

PETITION - Councilor Barbara Haller on behalf of Jonathan Finkelstein, Attorney on behalf of Yum! Brands, Inc. requests the City Council to amend the Zoning Map from RG-5 to BG-3 for a portion of a parcel of property known as 8 West Oberlin St.

Attachments

Referred to Planning Board