February 1, 2018
Hello Ward 4 and Beyond!
Thank you for subscribing to my newsletter. The intent of this newsletter is to keep you all up-to-date on what is happening in City Hall, around Ward 4 and across Somerville.
Board of Alderman
On the evening of January 1st, the 2018-2019 Board Of Alderman were officially sworn in.
The Board meets every other Thursday at 7pm in the Aldermanic Chambers on the second floor of City Hall. Our next meeting is Thursday February 8th. You can find the meeting agenda, a link to the video stream and additional information about the Board meetings here: http://somervillecityma.iqm2.com/Citizens/Default.aspx
The first vote the new Board took on January 1st was to elect our new President of the Board, Katjana Ballantyne. The job of board president has historically been a rotating position. Alderman At-Large Bill White has served as President since 2013 and did an outstanding job. I thank him for his service.
Committee appointments have been assigned. You can find more information about the committees here, https://www.somervillema.gov/boa.
My committee appointments are as follows:
- Public Health and Public Safety (Chairman)
- Housing and Community Development (Vice Chairman)
- Youth Services (Vice Chairman)
- Open Space, Environment, and Energy
- Veterans and Public Services
- Bicycle Advisory Committee
Here is a link to my profile on the city’s website. It includes all of my contact information:
Since being sworn in, I have been dealing with many constituents’ issues and attending meetings with a variety of folks including residents, business owners, community groups, as well as City staff.
We also dealt with a snow storm and all of the related issues that come up with snow removal, including residents and businesses who neglect to shovel. We had a great turnout for the Winter Hill Neighborhood Association’s first “neighborhood shovel up”. Kudos to resident Ian Adelman for organizing this great event and thank you to everyone who showed up.
In just a few hours of shoveling we got in a good workout and improved pedestrian safety by opening up inaccessible sidewalks/crosswalks.
I put a board order in Requesting that the DPW target Winter Hill, in the area of Broadway and Temple street, for snow removal in the same way the DPW prioritizes the city’s squares.
Blessing of the Bay Boathouse Park
The Mass. Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), in partnership with The Mystic River Watershed Association and Groundwork Somerville, is leading a comprehensive, community-driven plan and design for Blessing of the Bay Park. With the input of local residents and stakeholders, the revitalization plan will identify the physical features, natural areas, programming and amenities needed to transform this park into one that supports recreation, active transportation, social cohesion and ecological health.
Stay tuned for meeting announcement in the coming weeks.
We are so lucky to have this underutilized resource in Ward 4. Now we need to make sure that the designers hear the needs and desires from our community. Please fill out this 5-minute survey to share your vision for Somerville's waterfront!
Click here for Survey
95 Bus Stop
Recently the MBTA removed two bus stops along the 95 Bus route due to safety concerns. This has left commuters with no stops between Shore Drive and Century Bank in Medford. I have reached out to our State Representative and the MBTA hoping that we can reinstall a stop with proper safety measures in place. We should be making public transit more accessible, not less. I put a board order in to address this issues in committee, bringing the City and the MBTA together.
At the first BOA meeting I revived a standing order requesting an update on the abandoned Star Market parcel and the ongoing lawsuit. It’s in the housing and economic development committee right now.
Winter Hill Neighborhood Plan
As you may be aware, a few years ago after a series of community meetings and input from residents the city put out what is known as the Winter Hill Neighborhood Plan last Spring. This plan is based on what came out of those community meetings that many of you may have attended.
The city is now planning to work with the community on how to best implement this plan. There will be meetings (TBA) happening sometime in the next month. I will notify you as soon as they are scheduled. I encourage all of you to attend and get involved.
Office Hours and Other opportunities to meet:
I will be holding joint office hours with State Representative Christine Barber and Ward 4 School Committee member Andre Green this coming Saturday, February 3rd from 8-10am at the Winter Hill Brewing Company located at 328 Broadway. Come and voice concerns, ask questions, or just say hello. I’m looking forward to meeting with you.
In addition to the office hours, the Winter Hill Neighborhood Association and the Mystic Tenants Association are hosting a “Get to know your elected officials” event on February 7th at 7pm in the main meeting room of the Mystic Learning Center at 530 Mystic Ave.
The BOA will begin the zoning overhaul process in the coming weeks. The public will have chance to weigh in with their comments. In the meantime please feel free to send my any comments you have. Everything you need to know about the new zoning can be found here: www.SomervilleZoning.com
Jesse Clingan, Ward 4 Alderman