CITY OF WORCESTER

Economic Development Committee Meeting

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Esther Howland (South) Chamber

Convened: 5:08 P.M.

Adjourned: 6:12 P.M.


Mayor
Joseph M. Petty

 

www.worcesterma.gov

 

Clerk of the City Council
Nikolin Vangjeli

Committee Members

Chairperson Candy Mero-Carlson
Vice Chairperson Sean M Rose
Councilor Matthew E Wally
 

City Hall - 455 Main Street Worcester, Massachusetts


Present Were:Chairperson Councilor Candy Mero-Carlson Vice Chairperson Councilor Sean M Rose Councilor Matthew E Wally
 
Also:Chief Development Officer Peter Dunn Cultural Development Officer Erin Williams Special Projects Assistant Nikki Erskine City Clerk Nikolin Vangjeli, clerk
 
1.

Virtual Attendee Call-In Information

1a.

Pursuant to Chapter 20 of the Acts of 2021 and in order to ensure active, public engagement, the City of Worcester currently allows for both in-person and remote participation at all City Council and Standing Committee meetings. To partake in the meeting, you may join us directly within the Esther Howland (South), follow the below link to join via the WebEx application or dial the direct line as indicated. If you would like to raise your hand when in the meeting as a call-in user you may dial *3. Ė Phone Number: 415-655-0001, Access Code: 2310 903 8621.

https://cow.webex.com/cow/onstage/g.php?MTID=ece110cc35734c7e7afccf35d03a9aa84

Attachments
2.

Approval of the Minutes

2a.

Order - That the City Council Standing Committee of Economic Development hereby approves the minutes of the Economic Development Committee meeting on November 9, 2021.

View Agenda

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson read the item and moved to adopt the order. Order adopted

3.

Communications of the City Manager

3a.

Transmitting informational communication regarding the recipients of 2021 Worcester Arts Council (WAC) grants. # 9.24A CM March 16, 2021

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson read the item and recognized the Cultural Development Officer, who provided an overview of the Worcester Arts Council, the application and selection processes for WAC grants for local projects and artists and the applicants for the 2021 WAC grants.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized Councilor Wally, who discussed the appeal process for applicants with the Cultural Development Officer.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized Councilor Rose, who discussed funding allocations for FY22 budget and the diversity in applicants for the grants.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson moved for a roll call vote to recommend the item be filed.

Recommend File on a roll call vote of 3 Yeas and 0 Nays

3b.

Transmitting informational communication relative to the Worcester Arts Council 2021 Grant Applications and Grant Writing Workshop. # 9.24B CM October 6, 2020

In Committee October 27, 2020 - Held

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson read the item and recognized the Cultural Development Officer, who discussed the review process for FY21 grants.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson moved for a roll call vote to recommend the item be filed.

Recommend File on a roll call vote of 3 Yeas and 0 Nays

3c.

Transmitting informational communication relative to Housing & Neighborhood Development Activities. # 16b CC October 12, 2021

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson read the item and recognized the Chief Development Officer, who provided an overview concerning projects for affordable housing, home ownership development, housing for the homeless and other housing initiatives and funding.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson then discussed the locations of the home ownership development project units, the developer for the preservation of existing affordable housing units, and the completion of various housing units in the City.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized Councilor Wally, who spoke concerning the item.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized Councilor Rose, who discussed the number of affordable housing required in a municipality per state law and the current status of affordable housing units in the City.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson moved for a roll call vote to recommend the item be filed.

Recommend File on a roll call vote of 3 Yeas and 0 Nays

3d.

Transmitting the semi-annual Tax Increment Financing / Tax Increment Exemption Report for the period ending June 30, 2021. # 10.4E CM October 5, 2021

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson read the item and moved to take the item up collectively with Item #3e.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized the Chief Development Officer, who provided an overview of Tax Increment Financing (TIF) and the Tax Increment Exemption (TIE) projects, including market-rate housing units.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized Councilor Wally, who discussed the potential impact of inflation and supply chain issues on the development of housing units with the Chief Development Officer.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized Councilor Rose, who discussed efforts to increase transparency relative to the processes relative to TIE and TIF programs and the COVID-19 Pandemicís impact on the needs to commute to Boston as more companies explore work-from-home solutions with the Chief Development Officer.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson moved for a roll call vote to recommend the item be filed.

Recommend File on a roll call vote of 3 Yeas and 0 Nays

3e.

Transmitting Information Communication Relative to the Semi-Annual TIF/TIE Reporting. # 11c CC March 16, 2021

Attachments

Recommend File on a roll call vote of 3 Yeas and 0 Nays (See Item #3d)

3f.

Transmitting informational communication relative to a status update on the UNUM TIF agreement. # 8.4B CM November 10, 2020

In Committee December 8, 2020 - Held

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson read the item and recognized the Chief Development Officer, who provided an update regarding UNUMís master lease on the property.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized Councilor Wally, who discussed UNUM report concerning subleasing office space with the Chief Development Officer.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson recognized Councilor Rose, who spoke concerning the item.

Chairperson Councilor Mero-Carlson moved for a roll call vote to recommend the item be held.

Recommend Hold on a roll call vote of 3 Yeas and 0 Nays