Preview: City Council agenda (January 9)

The Worcester City Council meets Tuesday at 6:30pm. The agenda is here.

This is a meeting of the new City Council! Now with Sean Rose and Matt Wally.

If you know of anyone else who’d like to get our weekly preview via email, the link is here.

  • Rezoning Ed Hyder’s: Ed would like part of 408 Pleasant St and an adjacent part of Winslow St rezoned from residential to commercial and added to the Commercial Corridor Overlay District. The first step in this process is a hearing before the Planning Board.
  • Boards and Commissions, Part One: The Manager is appointing or reappointing a bunch of people. Newly added as constables are Stephen Casey, Peter Derry, Scott Derry, Patrick Duggan, Krystal Gagnon, John Gaimari, Denise Marois Lecuyer, James Racicot, and Anatoly Yankovsky. Diane Long and Tomi Stefanie have been appointed and Robyn Conroy reappointed to the Historical Commission; Jacqueline Yang, Jose Medina-Santos and Luis Portillo Reyes appointed to the Human Rights Commission; Edward Wheeler to the GAR Memorial Hall Board of Trustees; Richard Shea to the Elder Affairs Commission; and Stephanie Mireku to the Worcester Arts Council.
  • Boards and Commissions, Part Two: The City Council will vote whether or not to appoint Benetta Kuffour to the Citizens Advisory Council, and John Deedy to the Hope Cemetery Board of Commissioners.
  • Hub/Cor: The city is starting a new project to improve communication between public safety and social service organizations called Hub/Cor. Worcester already does an okay job of this—we’re even occasionally cited by cities trying to do a better job. I’m curious to see how Hub/Cor operates and what results come out of it.
  • PILOT: Like Ahab chasing the white whale, the Council continues to try to find a way to tax nonprofits. This week there’s an item on the agenda pushing forward a plan for the city administration to work with our state delegation on this.
  • Changing Apartment Tax Rates: The Council will request a report as to what it would look like, financially, if we started taxing 4+ unit buildings as commercial rather than residential property. The commercial rate is almost double the residential.
  • Cracking Down on Johns: Councilor Rivera has an item asking the city police to start running stings to target customers of prostitutes. (This item confuses me, I’m sure we already do this.)
  • Eliminating Boards and Commissions: Councilor Lukes suggests that, as we have trouble filling all the city boards and commissions, we should reorganize things to require fewer members.
  • More Dog Parks: Councilor Rosen wants a plan for dog parks in districts 1, 2, and 4.
  • Please Can We Stop Recycling from Blowing Around the Streets: Councilor Rosen has like his millionth agenda item regarding people’s recycling blowing out of our open-top recycling bins.
  • Suing the State for More Education Funding: The Council will likely ask the Manager to go ahead and sue the state for “underfunded Chapter 70 funding and Charter School Funding.”
  • New School Buildings: Councilor Lukes asks if there will be any design review procedures regarding the construction of our new school buildings.
  • Alcohol and Marijuana: Councilor Lukes has a couple items asking if the city can do more to limit the number of establishments that sell marijuana or alcohol.
  • Revising Church Street: This week on the agenda is a decree to rearrange and officially “make public” Church Street, the street behind the Common. This is just legal mumbo jumbo, but also a nice milestone in the long effort to reconfigure a big chunk of downtown Worcester.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *