OCTOBER 29th, 2018
Donna D. Holaday, Mayor
Intermodal Facility/Garage: Construction continues to proceed on schedule and within budget, although it has tightened due to asbestos cleanup costs and minor change orders. The target date for completion is March. Efforts are focused on completing seasonal work (concrete) and continuing interior work. The next IAG meeting is scheduled for November 8th. We understand the abutters’ concerns regarding the updated traffic concerns/study results, resident parking and paving. These issues will be addressed with a priority on traffic and neighborhood impact.
Financial- Free Cash Certification
|Enterprise Fund||Water Enterprise Fund||$1,188,081.00|
|Enterprise Fund||Sewer Enterprise Fund||$916,043.00|
|Enterprise Fund||Harbormaster Enterprise Fund||$554,212.00|
Youth Services: The BEACON Coalition held its quarterly meeting on October 18th with great turnout of school and city officials, community SC, CC youth, and parents. The focus is on a new Youth Development Plan and a new Campaign, “When youth matter, YOUth thrive”. The campaign is focused on empowering young people and fostering independence. The campaign would be branded for community members and partners to add to events, programs and communications to show the community support for empowering youth. The Youth Development Plan would be presented to the City Council for adoption. Additionally, project groups are forming for the Youth Development Plan Committee, the Marijuana Prevention Taskforce, Youth Thrive branding, the Let Grow Initiative and coalition participation. Please contact Youth Services at 978-465-4434 if you are interested in getting involved.
MA Municipal Association Legislative Breakfast: On Friday, October 19th the City hosted a legislative breakfast with legislators and elected officials from local communities to discuss the MMA agenda for the next legislative session with their policy analysts. Topics included the state supplemental budget, Airbnb, housing, marijuana, FLMA and pensions, Brave Act for Veterans, Injured-on-Duty and Firefighters and the new presumption of cancer, civics education and dyslexia.
Combined Sewer and Stormwater overflows (CSOs): The City hosted the Merrimack River Watershed Council (MRWC) on October 18 whom presented information on CSOs. 150 people attended and we are working to raise awareness of this serious problem of sewage being released into the Merrimack River during rain events from wastewater treatments plants in Manchester, NH, Nashua, NH, Lowell, Lawrence, and Haverhill. All of these communities are under Federal Administrative Consent Orders for corrective action at millions of dollars. As we face the challenges of climate change we must recognize this CSO situation will only increase. We need immediate short-term interventions – notification of CSO events, water testing and public education and awareness. Long term solutions require a united municipal, state and federal effort and all parties are beginning to collaborate. We held a conference call with Sen. Markey’s DC office last week. His staff are reaching out to the EPA and researching options. Congressman Moulton and Attorney General Healey are also engaged.
The MRWC presented to the Merrimack River Beach Association (MRBA). They will host a follow up conference on Dec 7th and we are working to schedule another series of public meetings.
National Grid: The City Council President, members of Public Safety and DPS and I held a meeting with National Grid to review the city’s gas system and status, emergency preparedness, training, the impact of the moratorium and status with union negotiations.
GOV. Baker, Lt. GOV. Polito, Secretary Pollack and other officials will join tomorrow for the ribbon cutting of the Whittier Bridge and Shared Use Path completion – Oct. 30th 12:45 at Ferry Rd. Access
Parks Dept. The City is working with New England Development on the potential rental of 51R Water Street for a much needed space for the Parks Department. A site visit occurred last week. For fitting out the building for the department, the city would be responsible for finishing the interior, including interior walls, painting, and installing a drop ceiling, with NED ensuring the building meets code requirements for electrical, heat and plumbing.
Community Service: This non-profit agency has provided support for those in need for over 100 years. Community Service has partnered with Our Neighbors’ Table to provide fresh produce and other food products directly to residents of Newburyport from the new center in the basement at St. Paul’s Episcopal on Summer Street. The new site opened last week.
Our Neighbors’ Table: OTH held their annual breakfast fundraiser and recognition of volunteers meeting last week. Newburyport has the highest level of food insecurity of all the communities served by ONT.
Gerrish Breast Cancer Center: On October 25th Anna Jaques Hospital & Institution for Savings sponsoredthe fifth annual Couture for a Cure Marketplace and Fashion Show to benefit the Gerrish Breast Cancer Center at Anna Jaques Hospital at the Blue Ocean Event Center. Meghan Tierney, Lois Honneger and Mark Murray were outstanding models!
Newburyport Chamber Breakfast: The Chamber hosted Jay Ash, Secretary of Housing & Economic Development on Friday October 26 to discuss the economics of the state and region.
Personnel Updates: We accepted the resignation of Wayne Amaral who has accepted the DPW Director position in West Newbury. He will be leaving in mid-November and will be missed. Today, we welcomed Matt Coogan who started his new position as Chief of Staff for the Mayor’s Office.