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Holyoke City Council Meeting October 3, 2023

OctOctober 3 2023

7:00pm Holyoke City Council Chambers

536 Dwight St, Room 11, Holyoke, MA 01040

Pursuant to the Massachusetts Open Meeting Law, G.L. c. 30A, §§ 18-25,
and Chapter 2 of the Acts of 2023
notice is hereby given that there will be regular meeting of the
Holyoke City Council

Tuesday, October 3, 2023
7:00PM

Meeting will take place at Holyoke City Hall, 536 Dwight St
and can also be accessed remotely via www.zoom.us
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85914960000?pwd=QVBqSkJvd0pSZENmNFdDbnVXTnVTUT09
Meeting ID: 859 1496 0000 Meeting Passcode: 657908 or by call in at 1 (646) 558-8656 with same Meeting ID and Passcode.

Live Spanish interpretation will be available on local access channel 15 using the television’s SAP option, through the live stream on the city website, as well as on the Zoom feed by clicking the interpretation option and choosing Spanish.

Agenda

AGENDA FOR THE CITY COUNCIL
October 3,2023

LAID ON THE TABLE

1. From Mayor Joshua A. Garcia letter of Veto for the CPA ballot question to be placed on the November 2023 local election.

2. The Committee on Ordinance to whom was referred an order That Ordinance Section 12-4 Flags of the City of Holyoke be amended to include the new regulations for flying the POW flag. Recommended that the order be adopted.

PUBLIC COMMENT

COMMUNICATIONS

3. From Mayor Joshua A. Garcia letter appointing Ms. Kate Hopkinson, 87 Pearl St. to serve on the Local Historic District effective immediately; Ms. Hopkinson will replace Christine Berge and will serve a three year term; said term will expire on July 1, 2026.

4. From Jane Mantolesky, Assistant City Solicitor letter re: Licensing Agreement for 392 Main St. (Jubinville Package Store) Insurance Binder and Evidence of Insurance.

5. From Brenna Murphy McGee, MMC & Jeffery Anderson-Burgos, Admin. Asst to City Council minutes of September 5, 2023.

6. Communication regarding “flag code and proper procedures for pledge of allegiance”.

7. Communication from Meg McGrath-Smith CPA Project List in response for a request from Finance committee.

8. From Holyoke Economic Development and Industrial Corporation minutes of June 29, 2023.

9. From Holyoke Redevelopment Authority minutes of August 16, 2023.

10. From Board of Fire Commission minutes of August 17, 2023.

11. From Holyoke Historical Commission minutes of July 10, & August 21, 2023.

PETITIONS

12. Petition of Delfina Saillant, of 20 Pearl St. for a new special permit for a Third Dwelling Unit in an existing two family (R2) 7.2.9.

PRESIDENT’S REPORT

REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

13. Ordinance Committee Reports (if any)

13A. The Committee on Ordinance to whom was referred an order Special Permit Application Euphorium LLC at 15 Main St (033-06-022) for an adult-use cannabis retail, tier 1 cultivation, and manufacturing (non-chemical extraction) establishment. Recommended that the special permit be granted with the following conditions:
1. That the owner of the building always pay the commercial property tax rate to the extent allowed by federal, state, and local laws for the duration of the Special Permit.
2. That the business retains a minimum 30% Holyoke residents for non-security jobs.
3. That the hiring preference be given to security personnel that are retired Holyoke police or are a retired member of another police department that now lives in the city of Holyoke.
4. There shall be no marijuana consumption allowed on site.
5. That the hours of operation be set according to City ordinances.
6. That the applicant must abide by Massachusetts General Laws and guidance’s from the Cannabis Control Commission.
7. That the petitioner/applicant shall conform with city and state health laws, rules, and regulations, including odor nuisance controls, for the duration of the permit.
8. That if substantial progress has not occurred within 2 years of issuance of the Special Permit, an extension shall be required.
9. That the operations for the special permit begin after the completion of a host community agreement or approval of a waiver.
10. That the applicant will comply with the Planning letter, dated July 28, 2023, and the Engineer letter, dated September 7, 2023.

13B. The Committee on Ordinance to whom was referred an order in accordance with the city charter, create ordinance language that confirms, when a resident is elected as a ward councilor and subsequently moves to another ward during the term, the ward city council seat is vacated. Recommended that the order has been complied with.

13C. The Committee on Ordinance to whom was referred an order To further amend to return this language to section 2-153 of our ordinance:
In special cases the mayor, or city council through a majority vote, may authorize or require the department to secure the advice or services of such additional counselors as they may deem best. No money shall be paid by the for legal services, except as expressly authorized by this chapter. The mayor shall fund any authorization approved by the city council under this section.
Recommended that the order has been complied with.

14. Finance Committee Reports (if any)

14A. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that in accordance with M.G.L. Chapter 44 Sec. 53A, the City Council hereby accepts the provisions of the “2023 CAR SEAT DISTRIBUTION PROGRAM, NON MONETARY, NO MATCH” grant and authorizes the establishment of a Fund or other method appropriate for the accounting of the receipts and expenditures of all resources associated with the administration of said grant. Recommended that the order be adopted.

14B. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that in accordance with M.G.L. Chapter 44 Sec. 53A, the City Council hereby accepts the provisions of the “FY24 EEA MUNICIPAL VULNERABILITY PREPAREDNESS PROGRAM, $192,900, 25% MATCH (IN KIND/CPA)” grant and authorizes the establishment of a Fund or other method appropriate for the accounting of the receipts and expenditures of all resources associated with the administration of said grant. Recommended that the order be adopted.

14C. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that the amount of TWO THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED TWENTY FOUR AND 00/100 Dollars ($2,524.00) be authorized from the SOLICITOR Department’s LITIGATION (11512-57600) appropriation in fiscal year 2024 for services rendered in fiscal year 2023 which were unencumbered at the 2023 fiscal year end. Recommended that the order be adopted.

14D. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2024, FIFTY THOUSAND AND 00/100 Dollars ($50,000) as follows:
FROM:
8811-10400 CAPITAL STABILIZATION $50,000
TOTAL: $50,000
TO:
60402-53005 SEWER – LEGAL SERVICES $50,000
TOTAL: $50,000 Recommended that the order be adopted.

14E. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2024, ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND AND 00/100 Dollars ($100,000) as follows:
FROM:
8811-10400 CAPITAL STABILIZATION $100,000
TOTAL: $100,000
TO:
60402-53011 SEWER- PROFESSIONAL SERVICES $100,000
TOTAL: $100,000 Recommended that the order be adopted.

14F. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2024, ONE THOUSAND TWO HUNDRED AND 00/100 Dollars ($1,200.00) as follows:
FROM:
11381-51102 ASSISTANT CPO-PURCHASING $1,200.00
TOTAL: $1,200.00
TO:
12442-54800 MV FUEL-WEIGHTS & MEASURES $1,200.00
TOTAL: $1,200.00 Recommended that the order be adopted.

14G. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2024, SIX THOUSAND AND 00/100 Dollars ($6,000.00) as follows:
FROM:
12101-51117 E911 DISPATCHERS $6,000.00
TOTAL: $6,000.00
TO:
12101-51910 STIPENDS $6,000.00
TOTAL: $6,000.00 Recommended that the order be adopted.

14H. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2024, TWENTY FOUR THOUSAND THREE HUNDRED FIFTY NINE AND 00/100 Dollars ($24,359.00) as follows:
FROM:
16102-52100 ENERGY-GAS/OIL/ELECTRIC $24,359.00
TOTAL: $24,359.00
TO:
16101-51112 FINANCIAL MANAGER – LIBRARY $24,359.00
TOTAL: $24,359.00 Recommended that the order be adopted.

14I. The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order that the treasurer and Mass Munifin come before the finance committee to update on the overall progress of the department and the scope of service work being done.
Recommended that the order has been complied with.

15. Public Safety Committee Reports (if any)

15A. The Committee on Public Safety to whom was referred an order that a communication is sent to the Council as to when the rubbish at 27 Cabot Street will be cleaned up. Recommended t hat the order has been complied with.

15B. The Committee on Public Safety to whom was referred an order that local inspections of retail marijuana establishments for compliance with laws (selling to 21+) similar to those for cigarettes and alcohol be completed in coordination with the Cannabis Commission. Recommended that the order has been complied with.

15C. The Committee on Public Safety to whom was referred an order that representatives of Cataldo Ambulance Service Company be asked to come into public safety and share any information or data they have collected in relation to overdoses with the city of Holyoke. Recommended that the order has been complied with.

15D. The Committee on Public Safety to whom was referred an order that the Mayor organize an advisory committee that will work in collaboration with Public Health Department and Public Safety Committee that will work on coordinating re-entry services for those re-entering society, specifically the city of Holyoke. Recommended that the order has been complied with.

16. Public Service Committee Reports (if any)

17. Development and Governmental Relations Committee Reports (if any)

17A. The Committee on Development and Governmental Relations to whom was referred an order that the City Council approves the Resolution for the Certified Project Application and Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Agreement with Sublime Systems LLC for the purpose of the company’s acquisition, development and investments at properties on Water Street. The properties are identified as Water St. Parcel 002A, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22-24 and 26 Water St., (Board of Assessors Map 044, Block 01, Parcel 00A, Map 042, Block 01, Parcel 004, Map 044, Block 01, Parcel 002, Map 051, Block 01, Parcels 005, 010, 004, 003 and 009). Recommended that the order be adopted.

17B. The Committee on Development and Governmental Relations to whom was referred an order From Law Department License Agreement for 370-396 Main St. Recommended that the license be granted, pending proof of full compliance with the agreement, particularly the proof of insurance.

17C. The Committee on Development and Governmental Relations to whom was referred an order Special permit application for home occupation of Marisol Figueroa for a nail salon at 222 West Franklin Street Recommended that the special permit be granted with the following conditions:
1. That the hours of operation will be Tuesday-Friday, 9am-6pm, and Saturday 9am-3pm.
2. That there will be no signage.
3. That all customers will park in the driveway to the extend feasible.

17D. The Committee on Development and Governmental Relations to whom was referred an order invite Thomas Irwin from PaintCare MA to discuss pending state legislation that would create a statewide paint recycling program to allow people to return unused paint to stores to be disposed of in an environmentally friendly way. Recommended that the order has been complied with.

17E. The Committee on Development and Governmental Relations to whom was referred an order That Nueva Esperanza please be invited to present their plans to the public for their 150,000 dollar ARPA award and “El Mercado“ space renovation/tracking. Recommended that the order has been complied with.

18. Charter and Rules Committee Reports (if any)

19. Joint City Council and School Committee Reports (if any)

MOTIONS, ORDERS AND RESOLUTIONS

20. JOURDAIN — Ordered, that the DPW/City Engineer fix the city street in front of the driveways of 188 Sargeant Street and 307 Linden Street because the street storm runoff is running on to the properties of these residents from the street.  During the winter the street runoff also causes the sidewalks to fill with water and cause icy conditions that are dangerous to pedestrians.  This should be considered a matter deserving urgent attention please and fixed asap.

21. MALDONADO-VELEZ — “As the city of Holyoke continues to grow and host an increasing number of events, it is essential to foster effective collaboration among various city departments, including the Licensing Board, Board of Health, Fire Department, Police Department, DPW, and any other relevant city agencies. To achieve this, we propose convening a comprehensive meeting aimed at discussing and streamlining the event planning process within our city, particularly in cases involving vendors – crafts, food, food trucks, non-profits.

This meeting will serve as a platform for addressing key aspects such as permits, licenses, fees, and the distinction between events held on public property versus private property. Our primary objective is to enhance clarity and coherence across departments, event organizers, and stakeholders. Furthermore, we will explore potential updates or revisions to existing ordinances to ensure a more efficient and transparent process that benefits all parties involved.”

22. MCGEE — `Ordered, that winners for the Arson Watch Reward Program poster contest, second place for Hampden County, Eaven Torruella, and Honorable Mention, David Alexander Engle Fernandez , be invited into a City Council meeting to receive a proclamation and to present their posters for display in City Council chambers.

23. MCGIVERIN — that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2024, TWENTY EIGHT THOUSAND FOUR HUNDRED THIRTY SEVEN AND 52/100 Dollars ($28,437.52) as follows:

FROM:
12101-51105 SERGEANTS $13,990.88
12101-51107 PATROLMEN 14,446.64
TOTAL: $28,437.52
TO:
12101-51180 INJURED ON DUTY $28,437.52
TOTAL: $28,437.52

24. MCGIVERIN — that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2024, ONE THOUSAND ONE HUNDRED FORTY SIX AND 95/100 Dollars ($1,146.95) as follows:

FROM:
12201-51105 FIREFIGHTER $1,146.95
TOTAL: $1,146.95
TO:
12201-51180 INJURED ON DUTY (PAY PERIOD #6) $1,146.95
TOTAL: $1,146.95

25. MCGIVERIN — that in accordance with M.G.L. Chapter 44 Sec. 53A, the City Council hereby accepts the provisions of the “FY2024 STATE 911 DEPARTMENT TRAINING GRANT PROGRAM, $25,013.16, NO MATCH” grant and authorizes the establishment of a Fund or other method appropriate for the accounting of the receipts and expenditures of all resources associated with the administration of said grant.

26. MCGIVERIN — that in accordance with M.G.L. Chapter 44 Sec. 53A, the City Council hereby accepts the provisions of the “FY24 EEA MUNICIPAL VULNERABILITY PREPAREDNESS PROGRAM-ACTION GRANT, $141,680, 25% IN KIND MATCH, ” grant and authorizes the establishment of a Fund or other method appropriate for the accounting of the receipts and expenditures of all resources associated with the administration of said grant.

27. MCGIVERIN — that in accordance with M.G.L. Chapter 44 Sec. 53A, the City Council hereby accepts the provisions of the “FY2024 JAIL/ARREST DIVERSION PROGRAM GRANT, $45,000, NO MATCH” grant and authorizes the establishment of a Fund or other method appropriate for the accounting of the receipts and expenditures of all resources associated with the administration of said grant.

28. PUELLO — That the no parking sign at 14 Arthur St please be removed. Per DPW must go to ordinance.

29. PUELLO — That the law department provide the opinion that has been pending, for months, to the next public service committee meeting, regarding the ethics concerns around the Council Presidents appointment by the mayor to the retirement board. That they please address all concerns, mgl 286a sec 20 and the 6 month waiting period after leaving office. Thank you.

30. RIVERA_J — Request the implementation of a three-way stop at the intersection of Mosher and Bowers Streets. 

31. RIVERA_J — Request the Department of Public Works (DPW) to initiate the replacement of the current phone system. I believe that a modernized system capable of dialing extensions will significantly improve communication.

32. RIVERA_J — State of sidewalks in our community in Ward 1 particularly on Center, Lyman, and Grover Streets, as well as Bowers Street from Lyman Street to Kelly School.

The current condition of these sidewalks poses a safety concern, especially for the children walking from Lyman Terrace to Kelly School. In order to ensure the safety and well-being of our residents, particularly our students, we kindly request the prompt repair of these sidewalks.

33. VACON — that Veolia provides the estimated cost for street sweeping for the next fiscal year for the purpose of decreasing the sewer rate required for the sewer enterprise fund.  This is a citywide service that is properly paid from the general fund.  A written response is acceptable.

34. VACON — Order:  that the ballot question approved by the City
JOURDAIN Council be placed on the ballot on November 4, 2024
PUELLO as referenced in the 9/26/23 decision by Judge Mulqueen.

Ballot
Question
Shall the City of Holyoke amend the current
Community Preservation Act real estate surcharge,
as established in accordance with the provisions of
Section 3 of Chapter 44B of the Massachusetts General
Laws, and which amendment of such surcharge is permissible
pursuant to Section 16 of Chapter 44B of the Massachusetts
General Laws, and approved by its legislative body,
from 1.5% to 1.0%, a summary of which appears below?

(with
revised dates)
8
Community Preservation Act Ballot
Question and Draft Summary
Ballot Question
Shall
the City of Holyoke amend the current Community Preservation
Act real estate surcharge, as established in accordance
with the provisions of Section 3 of Chapter 44B of
the Massachusetts General Laws, and which amendment
of such surcharge is permissible pursuant to Section
16 of Chapter 44B of the Massachusetts General Laws,
and approved by its legislative body, from 1.5% to
1.0%, a summary of which appears below?
Summary of
Question
On October 3, 2023, the City Council voted,
without taking a position, to place a question on
the ballot which will allow voters to reduce the current
Community Preservation Act real estate surcharge from
1.5% to 1.0%.. The question will be approved, and
the real estate surcharge shall be so reduced, if
a majority of the voters voting on the ballot question
vote “yes”. The question will not be approved, and
the real estate surcharge shall remain the same, if
a majority of the voters voting on the ballot question
vote “no”
On November 8, 2016, the voters of the
City of Holyoke voted to accept Sections 3 to 7 of
Chapter 44B, known as the Community Preservation Act
(hereinafter referred to as the “Act’*).
By accepting
the Act, a funding source was established to enable
the City of Holyoke to: (1) acquire, create and preserve
open space, which includes land for parks, playgrounds
and athletic fields; (2) acquire, preserve and rehabilitate
historic resources such as historic community buildings
and artifacts; and (3) acquire, create, and preserve
and support community housing to help local families
meet their housing needs.
By accepting the Act, a
surcharge of 1.5% was assessed on real estate on an
annual basis beginning in Fiscal Year 2018. Exempted
from the surcharge are: (1) property owned and occupied
as a domicile by any person who would qualify for
low income housing or low or moderate income senior
housing in the City of Holyoke, as defined in Section
2 of the Act; (2)
$100,000 of the value of each taxable
parcel of residential real property; and (3) $100,000
of the value of each taxable parcel of class three,
commercial property, and class four, industrial property
as defined in section 2A of said chapter 59. A taxpayer
receiving a regular property tax abatement or exemption
will also receive a pro rata reduction in the surcharge.
Any taxpayer seeking a low income or senior exemption
shall apply for said exemption annually to the City
of Holyoke.

35. BARTLEY — The City Engineer and DPW develop and install safety
MCGIVERIN measures for passenger cars, trucks and motorcycles
PUELLO in the vicinity of Holyoke’s canals as the current
protective measures have recently and regularly been
breached resulting in loss of life, property damage,
and costs to HG&E. Refer to DPW, City Engineer,
HG&E Manager & Commissioners, and Emergency Management
Director to strategize improvements and the Mayor
to finance these projects. Refer to DGR for discussion.

36. BARTLEY — The city of Holyoke work with its state delegation and federal partners to develop protective barriers along Route 91 proximate to ISO-New England. The most recent issues concern bullet holes found at ISO-NE that appear to emanate from motorists traveling on 91. The MSP and HPD are investigating and Shot-spotter detected the gunfire, according to an ISO-NE official. There is a possibility that there exists a private source of funding for the barriers and government officials are now being made aware of the potential private funds via this Order. Please note that it’s very likely that an easement from the Commonwealth would be required to build. Refer to DGR and copy to City Engineer, MA DOT District 2 (Northampton), Holyoke’s state delegation and copies to Public Safety and ISO-New England. (Couple this order with prior ones from Councilors Jourdain and Vacon and others relative to similar requests on the N- and S-bound sides of 91.)

37. BARTLEY — The city review and advise on a constituent request to install a “do not block the box” on Northampton St / Longwood Ave. Refer to Public Safety, DPW, City Engineer.

38. BARTLEY — The City restripe the “do not block the box” warnings at Northampton St. proximate to Clark and Gilman Streets. The paint is pretty faded at this time. (Also, thank you to the DPW for the stripping in and around Ward 3 as this has been very welcome and much appreciated.) Receive, Adopt and refer to DPW.

39. BARTLEY — In light of the rollout of the new 96-gal trash receptacles,
JOURDAIN the DPW and Mayor expedite the planned procurement
of smaller trash bins for those who either do not
need such a large bin or those who are physically
unable to manage the 96-gallon behemoth. Refer to
DPW, Mayor and Finance with an update in a month.

40. GIVNER — Per resident safety concerns, order that the dead city tree, on the odd side of OConnor ave bend, be removed. Falling branches are a concern as well as its support of a utility pole by metal wire. Should this tree fall it has the potential to pull down a utility pole with street light, all connected utility cables, and damage at least 5 multi family homes along with parked vehicles.
-To City Forester / copy to Public Safety

41. GIVNER — With community support, Order to create “don’t block the box” street markings and signage at Beacon St on Pleasant St,  for safety.  This area  sees congestion and confusion during morning and afternoon school traffic commuting times. Residents have expressed concern for children as they are picked up and dropped off by school buses. 
-DPW / City Engineer department / Copy to Public Safety

42. GIVNER — With community support, Sylvia Ln residents have expressed health and safety concerns regarding the encampment behind McNulty Park and their cul de sac. There are several houseless people living in this area. There is an abundance of trash and other concerning happenings. Although not as noticeable when trees have full foliage, the fall and winter expose the serious quality of life issues visible for both the housed and unhoused. This must be addressed. 
-Board of Health / Copy to Public Safety

43. GIVNER — With community support, Order that our trash receptacle ordinance be updated to reflect the following:
Update to Ordinance Chapter 74 Section 2:
(a)
Residential rubbish receptacles.
(1)
96 gallon, rodent proof, water tight, residential rubbish receptacles are provided by the City. One receptacle is provided to each residential unit or household. Additional containers are not available and cannot be acquired.  Lost or damaged containers must be purchased from the City/DPW by residents at the current rate. A smaller receptacle may available by request. Considerations are made on a case by case basis and depend on need as determined by the disabilites commision/senior advocate/ personal / health advocate?

&

(3)
Should the number of containers necessary to contain all refuse at a given residential location exceed 1 95 Gallon receptacle on a weekly basis, the superintendent of public works will have the right to require the property to utilize an alternate method of collection.
-To Ordinance / Copy to DPW

44. GIVNER —

With community support, order that the following section of our Codes of Ordinances and charter be updated to reflect use of email as sufficient for special meeting notice: 
Sec. 12. – Special meetings of city council.

The mayor may at any time call a special meeting of the city council by public posting through the city website along with written notifications thereof, together with a statement of the subjects to be considered thereat, to be deposited in the post office, postpaid and addressed to the persons to be notified, at least forty-eight hours before the time appointed for such meeting, or to be left at the usual place of residence of each member of the council, by email at least fourty-eight hours before the time appointed for such meeting.
(Acts 1965, c. 187; Acts 1992, c. 189)
-To Charter & Rules AND Ordinance

45. GIVNER — With community support, order that all ordinances and charter rules reflecting city council and city council subcommittee meeting notices be updated to reflect acceptance of email as sufficient method of notice, and city website posting as sufficient method of public notice.  —– —To Charter & Rules AND Ordinance

Addendum:
The listing of matters are those reasonably anticipated by the chair which may be discussed at the meeting.
Not all items listed may in fact be discussed and other items not listed may also be brought up for discussion to the extent permitted by law

______________________________
City Clerk

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