Charter and Rules Committee Meeting Text Size

Event takes place on April 24, 2017 at 6:30 PM
Holyoke City Hall: Council Chambers

City Council
Holyoke Massachusetts

Notice of Committee Meeting
There will be a regular meeting of the Committee on
Charter and Rules

At City Hall in the Council Chamber, on Monday April 24th at 6:30PM
Per order of the Chair: Joseph McGiverin

Item 1: Approval of previous meeting minutes

Item 2: Tallman 3/18/14: Order:  That the Holyoke City Council adopt the provisions of M.G.L c32 section 20A pertaining to the indemnification of members of municipal retirement boards.

Item 3:McGee/Leahy/McGiverin: Ordered that the one year appointment for the City Council Administrative Assistant be changed to a two year appointment

Item 4: Roman 1/5/16: That the City Council amend its rules to make the joint committee of the City Council and School Committee a permanent standing committee.

Item 5: Jourdain 9/2/14: Order:  That Section 23 of the Charter be amended to provide that no member of the City Council may also be a city employee while serving as a member of the City Council.


Item 5: Jourdain 12/6/16: Ordered, that Rule 26 be amended to state that the 3rd order of Council business directly after the Pledge of Allegiance shall be the Statement “God Bless America, God Bless the City of Holyoke and All its Citizens, and God Bless the City Council.”


Item 6: 2/3/15: That the Counsel to the Council be provided with a microphone at her desk, and internet connection and printer access at her laptop when in Council chambers so that s/he may address the Council from her desk and be better able to provide needed information and documents. Further ordered that if needed a Rule be created to allow our Counsel to address the Council from her desk.


Item 7: Jourdain 10/21/14: Order:  That the City Charter be amended to combine the positions of the elected City Treasurer and council appointed Tax Collector into a new position entitled Collector & Treasurer of the City of Holyoke.  That this position be appointed by the City Council to a 3 year term.  That this change take effect January 2018 with the possibility of transition plan in the interim if legally permissible. 


Item 8: Roman 12/6/16: Ordered that the City of Holyoke through ordinance create “gentrification mitigation zones.” “Gentrification Mitigation Zones,” or GMZ will be areas with large working class and highest concentration of poverty according to the US Census Data tracts, above-average increases in property values and signs of resident displacement. The districts would be subject to stronger protections for tenants whose housing may be at risk as developers and people with higher incomes move into a neighborhood.  In a gentrification mitigation zone, tenants of a building that’s put up for sale would have the first chance to buy it, with the possible assistance of local (i.e. CPA), state and federal funds. If renters opted not to buy their building, the sale would be subject to a tax of 1 percent or less to assist tenants who face displacement locally. ​
Developers in these proposed zones would also have to create community impact statements to address how they would affect the neighborhood’s character, existing affordable housing, schools and other resources. They would be required to meet with any Ward Councilor in which a zone lies and the local neighborhood councils to present their plans.  

Item 9: Bresnahan 6/17/14: Order that pursuant to article 2 section 8 of the Massachusetts constitution the City Council of the City of Holyoke petition the state to enact a special act allowing the establishment of a city manager to oversee the day to day operations of the City of Holyoke. Hired by the City of Holyoke City Council with a set term and set pay established by the City Council


Item 10: McGee 5/15/12: Ordered that the City Charter Committee look into adopting a City Manager position instead of a 2 or 4 year Mayor position


Item 11: Sullivan 9/21/16: Ordered that the Sewer Commission and Water Commission be merged to form one board


Item 12: 3/20/12: Order:  That the newly formed charter group look into the pros and cons of combining the personnel department with the school dept, HG&E, and other personnel offices in the city into one centralized human resource division.


Item 13: Vacon 6/19/12: Order:  the City Council adopt a rule: Should a position become vacant where the Charter states that the City Council may appoint a member to fill a vacancy, that the City Council shall choose the individual receiving the next highest number of votes in the most recent election as long as the individual is eligible and willing to serve.
This preserves the integrity of the voting process by reflecting the will of the voters.


Item 14: Vacon 10/16/12: Ordered that no member of the City Council or other elected office of the City of H Olyoke shall be permitted to hold any other elected office including positions in the MA General Court


Item 15: Lisi 5/21/13: Order:  That  the City Council seek a legal opinion whether the ordinance committee can refer an order to the full City Council “without a recommendation”


Item 16:3/18/14:  Order:  the residency requirement for the DPW Director be given an exception due to the fact that he has served the City for over 25 years and that the requirement has never been enforced


Item 17: Alexander 4/1/14: Ordered that the appropriate sections of the Charter, Ordinances, and Council rules be amended to allow financial transfers within any one department for amounts up to $500 within the same fiscal year


Item 18: Alexander 4/1/14: Whereas: The City Solicitor has advised that all Orders require Mayoral signature before they can be acted upon by any City Department Ordered: That the Council adopt a Rule clarifying the form for each article of business that comes before the Council so that the business of the Council can continue to operate in a timely and effective manner


Item 19: Alexander 12/2/14: Ordered: that Council Rule 44 be amended to allow the following actions regarding Late Filed Orders

(a) Referral to Committee (currently allowed)

(b) Receipt of Communications without Referral

(c) Adoption and Referral without debate to any City Department

(d) to allow copies to be sent to any entity as appropriate.


Item 20: McGee B 12/18/12: Order to create a Committee dedicated to Casinos


Item 21: Alexander 3/4/14: Whereas: The City Council engages in many administrative decisions that are distractions from its legislative mission and purpose: Ordered:  That Ordinance Sec 10-51 (Billard etc. licenses) be changed to require a license issued by the License Commission rather than the City Council.


Item 22: Alexander 3/4/14: Whereas: Chapter 65 (Secondhand Goods) refers to a class of specific Businesses,  Ordered:  That Chapter 65 be reviewed for (a) streamlining, (b) inclusion as one or more Divisions of Chapter 22 (Businesses), (c) to revise section 66-61 (License) replacing the City Council with the License Commission as the Issuing Authority, (d) that section 66-65 (Fees) be revised to eliminate reference to specific fees and grant fee-setting authority to the License Commission


Item 23: Alexander 3/4/14: Whereas: The City Council engages in many administrative decisions that are distractions from its legislative mission and purpose Ordered:  That Chapter 22 Article V (Pawnbrokers) be amended to replace permit issuance by the City Council with issuance by the License Commission, and that section 22-182 (Fee) be amended to remove reference to a specific amount and the setting of such fee be granted to the License Commission.


Item 24: Alexander 3/4/14: Whereas: The License Commission currently controls some but not all fees for licenses and permits issued by the Commission: Ordered:  That Chapter 22 Sec 22-1 (Miscellaneous Business License Fees) be amended to strip reference to specific fee amounts and that control over that fee schedule be granted to the License Commission


Item 25: Alexander 3/4/14: Order:  Whereas: Chapter 98 (Vehicles for Hire) refers to a class of specific Businesses,  Ordered:  That Chapter 98 be reviewed for (a) streamlining, (b) inclusion as one or more Divisions of Chapter 22 (Businesses), (c) to revise all appropriate sections replacing the City Council and/or the Chief of Police with the License Commission as the Issuing Authority, (d) that all appropriate sections be revised to strike reference to specific fees and to grant fee-setting authority to the License Commission


Item 26: Alexander 11/20/12: Whereas: Primaries for local elections use significant resources and take time from both the voters and poll workers Ordered: That the City consider appropriate amendments to Charter and Ordinance to replace local primaries with Rank-Preference voting on Election Day, allowing for a majority-vote winner from the first round of voting.


Item 27: Alexander 12/2/14: ordered that Rule 42 (Special Meetings) be clarified to indicate that such meetings are not subject to the Order of Business specified in rule 26.


Item 28: Vega 9/3/13: Ordered that the following be referred to Ordinance and the Law Department for review and recommendations prior to the end of the term of the current Collector in February 2014.  That a review be conducted to consolidate all staff currently assigned to the Tax Collectors office with that of the Treasurers office.  That the possibility of conversion of the City Treasurer from Elected to Appointment is reviewed and that a new position of Deputy Treasurer/Collector is added with all the power and authority to act in the name of the Treasurer/Collector.  That the Current Treasurer head this combined office for the remainder of his term and that the Current Tax Collector be appointed to the new position.  That the two individuals work together to streamline and enhance the two offices and there by build a stronger succession plan. During this transition time no positions are to be eliminated and or reduced except upon retirement.  Adding this will perhaps build a willingness of all staff to come together and add input to this process.

Item 29: Soto 12/1/15: Ordered that the City Solicitor submit a memorandum detailing the legality and process related to amending our City Charter to allow for a recall process for all elected City official with four year terms.

Item 30: Sullivan5/3/16 : Order:  the City Council enact a rule or set of rules to govern the replacement of a vacated seat in an orderly and consistent manner.


Administrative Assistant: Ryan M. Allen
The listing of matters are those reasonable anticipated by the chair which may be discussed at the meeting. Not all items listed may in fact be discussed and other items may also be brought up for discussion to the extent permitted by law

Posted on April 20, 2017 by