Mattapoisett town meeting: funding fixes, upgrades
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MATTAPOISETT — A new ambulance, Harbormaster pump out boat and digitizing police radio communications, as well a bylaw to regulate medical marijuana facilities, will go before voters at Town Meeting tonight.
Town Meeting will be held at Old Rochester Regional High School tonight at 6:30 p.m. All town residents who are registered to vote may participate at the meeting.
One agenda item proposes that the town add $125,000 to the $100,000 that it has already saved to replace an ambulance purchased in 2006.
Another proposed appropriation of $135,000 would contribute to police radio upgrades, with the money coming from a combination of police funds and $96,000 in surplus revenue. The Mattapoisett Police Department shares a radio frequency with Fairhaven and Acushnet, since the three towns often work together. However, they are still on an unreliable analog signal. Fairhaven got a $200,000 grant to upgrade to digital radio that must be used by the end of the year. Acushnet has dedicated $130,000 to upgrading the shared radio frequency.
Voters will also be asked to approve $25,000 for a new pump out boat, with the remainder of the boat’s cost being covered by a $56,000 grant. The current boat suffered storm damage, so the Harbormaster is using a loaner boat. Even if the pump out boat is repaired it is not adequate, officials said.
Another agenda item asks voters to approve a bylaw to allow the town to regulate any medical marijuana facilities that might want to operate in town.The bylaw would limit them to Industrial Drive.The new bylaw also clearly defines the application and permit maintenance process to give the town more control over any businesses that apply for permits. The bylaw still prohibits marijuana consumption at the facilities or in public.
Many of the other agenda items have to do with appropriations for repairs around town:
Water Main on Pease’s Point. This would appropriate $950,000 to replace a water main behind residential houses that has aged and been eroded by tropical storms. The initial planning work was covered by a grant, but the town needs additional funding for the project.
Industrial Drive renovation. This would appropriate $155,000 to renovate Industrial Drive and the intersection and crossings at North Street. The funds would also be used for developing a multi-use path from North Street to the Marion Town Line.
Sidewalks and stormwater drains. Would allocate $45,000 of surplus revenue to improve trip hazards on sidewalks and stormwater drainage.
Town building repairs. This would appropriate $35,000 to repair the building.
Waterfront upgrades. This would consider appropriating $20,000 from the Waterfront Enterprise Fund retained earnings and an equal sum from surplus revenue for various renovations on the town docks and properties.
The parking lot on Barstow Street. This would appropriate $20,000 for parking lot repairs.
Council on Aging improvements. This would appropriate $16,000 for facility improvements.
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