The Worcester City Council meets Tuesday at 6pm. The agenda is here.
This week: a pretty light agenda. At some point they will incorporate a meeting of the Finance Committee into this Council meeting.
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- Rezoning: Bruce LaBoffa has put in a request to change the zone of 452 Southwest Cutoff from residential to manufacturing.
- Board and Commissions: Donna Goranson and Emily Longvall have been reappointed to the Mayor Thomas Early Scholarship Committee. The Council will have the chance to vote their approval of Dana Strong being reappointed to the Community Development Advisory Committee, and the appointment of Douglas Russell and Robert Bureau to the Commission on Disability.
- Tax Breaks: The City Manager is asking the Council to approve a $838,000, 10-year tax break for Allen Fletcher’s project to develop the empty lot in Kelley Square. (The lot is currently used as parking for the Crompton Building.) The development is expected to include 48 apartments, a restaurant, and a public market. The assessed value of the property will increase from $391,000 to $8,529,000. The previous plan for this lot was that somebody was going to buy it and put in a fast food restaurant or something. This seems like a much better plan. (Image of the plan below.)
- Murals: Once again there will be a mural/graffiti festival in the city this summer. The Council is being asked to approve a new mural on CC Lowell (455 Pleasant St) provided by the Worcester Historic Museum.
- Reassessing Report Requests: As you will know from reading these Council previews, Councilors are constantly asking the City Manager for reports on things. This week, Councilor Rosen has an item asking for a plan to “pare down” the “huge number” of outstanding requests and prioritize “only those report requests that are most important to each councilor.” (As you will also know from reading these previews, Councilor Rosen is among the most prolific report requesters.)
- Chief Diversity Officer: Councilor Lukes has an item asking for a report on how the city hires people and appoints people to board and commissions, and asking whether these processes are fair. She goes on to ask if the Chief Diversity Officer is having an impact on these issues.
- City of Literature: Councilor Lukes wants Worcester to apply to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization to be listed as a City of Literature. This would be a recognition of our lively writing, publishing, and teaching scene. I am not sure we are world-class in this area but why not give it a shot.