CITY OF WORCESTER

Public Safety Committee Meeting

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Esther Howland (South) Chamber

Convened: 4:00 P.M.

Adjourned: 4:46 P.M.


Mayor
Joseph M. Petty

 

www.worcesterma.gov

 

Clerk of the City Council
Nikolin Vangjeli

Committee Members

Chairperson Kathleen M Toomey
Vice Chairperson Sarai Rivera
Councilor Donna M Colorio
 

City Hall - 455 Main Street Worcester, Massachusetts


Present Were:Chairperson Councilor Kathleen M Toomey Councilor Sarai Rivera Councilor Donna M Colorio
 
Also:WPD Chief Steven Sargent WFD Chief Michael Lavoie Commissioner of Inspectional Services John Kelly City Solicitor Michael Traynor Deputy City Clerk Stephen A.J. Pottle, clerk
 
1.

Approval of the Minutes

1a.

Order - That the City Council Standing Committee on Public Safety hereby approves the minutes of the Public Safety Committee meeting on February 4, 2020.

View Agenda

Chairperson Councilor Toomey read the item and moved for a roll call vote to adopt the item. Order adopted on a roll call vote of 3 Yeas and 0 Nays.

2.

Communications of the City Manager

2a.

Transmitting informational communication relative to the Worcester Fire Department Master Plan. # 8.9A CM February 4, 2020

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Toomey read the item and recognized the Fire Chief, who provided an overview of actions taken in relation to the Worcester Fire Department Master Plan.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey recognized Councilor Colorio, who stated she was in support of the Worcester Fire Department Master Plan, appreciating that the plan was a data driven analysis of the department.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey 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

2b.

Transmitting informational communication relative to a report concerning building code effectiveness grading schedule. # 8.16A CM April 9, 2019

In Committee May 22, 2019 - Held In Committee February 4, 2020 - Held

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Toomey read the item and recognized the Commissioner of Inspectional Services, who provided an overview of the building code effectiveness grading schedule.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey spoke to the effectiveness of the Inspectional Services Department. Chairperson Councilor Toomey then discussed the use of backyard fire pits that run on propane with the Commissioner of Inspectional Services and the Fire Chief.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey brought forth the following Chairmanís Order: Request City Manager provide City Council with a report relative to the codes for backyard fire pits that run on propane.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey moved for a roll call to recommend the item be placed on file, and to adopt the Chairmanís Order brought forth during the discussion of the item.

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

Chairman's Orders

Request City Manager provide City Council with a report relative to the codes for backyard fire pits that run on propane.

2c.

Transmitting informational communication relative to Crime Statistics During the Coronavirus Pandemic. # 8.10A CM May 12, 2020

Attachments

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

3.

Miscellaneous Items

3a.

Order of Councilor Donna M. Colorio - Request City Manager work with the cityís public safety officials to provide City Council with a report, as soon as possible and within the next thirty (30) days, concerning the following information: 1) The Cityís current crime statistics from March 2020 through the present; and 2) Updated public safety policies as it pertains to the coronavirus, COVID-19. # 12g CC April 21, 2020

Attachments
In Committee for informational purposes only

Chairperson Councilor Toomey read the item and took the item up collectively with #2c. Chairperson Councilor Toomey then recognized the Police Chief, who provided an overview of the item, including information relative to increases and decreases in various types of illegal activity due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey recognized Councilor Colorio, who discussed issues relative to youth vehicle break-ins, the potential for an increase in suicides and whether speeding has become an issue during COVID-19 with the Police Chief.

Councilor Colorio then put forth the following Chairmanís Order: Request City Manager request Police Chief provide City Council with information relative to whether there have been increases in police activity in the following areas during the COVID-19 pandemic: 1) Youth committing vehicular break-ins; 2) suicide responses; and 3) drivers speeding.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey recognized Councilor Rivera, who briefly spoke on the item.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey moved for a roll call to recommend items #3a and #2c be placed on file, and to adopt the Chairmanís Order brought forth during the discussion of the item.

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

Chairman's Orders

Request City Manager request Police Chief provide City Council with information relative to whether there have been increases in police activity in the following areas during the COVID-19 pandemic: 1) Youth committing vehicular break-ins; 2) suicide responses; and 3) drivers speeding.

3b.

Petition of Jasper Chin request the city's ordinance concerning "Solicitors and Canvassers" be amended to include language which would place restrictions on solicitation including but not limited to banning solicitation entirely or maintaining a "non-solicitation" list. # 8f CC September 3, 2019

Attachments

Chairperson Councilor Toomey read the item and recognized the following speaker, who participated remotely through digital means:
1. Jasper Chin, Worcester resident, spoke in favor of the item

Chairperson Councilor Toomey recognized the City Solicitor, who spoke to the process for drafting an ordinance accomplishing what the petitioner was requesting. The City Solicitor also stated individuals could put signs up ďNo SolicitationĒ signage on their property.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey put forth the following Chairmanís Order: Request City Manager request City Solicitor provide City Council with a report relative to implementing a non-solicitation ordinance, including information concerning any costs associated with the ordinance and whether the ordinance would have an effect on individuals collecting signatures for public matters.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey recognized Councilor Colorio and Councilor Rivera, who both were in favor of holding the item until more information became available.

Chairperson Councilor Toomey moved for a roll call to recommend the item be held and to adopt the Chairmanís Order brought forth during the discussion of the item.

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

Chairman's Orders

Request City Manager request City Solicitor provide City Council with a report relative to implementing a non-solicitation ordinance, including information concerning any costs associated with the ordinance and whether the ordinance would have an effect on individuals collecting signatures for public matters.