Holyoke City Council Meeting Text Size

Event takes place on March 20, 2018 at 7:00 PM
Holyoke City Hall, 536 Dwight St. City Council Chambers, Holyoke, MA

March 20,2018


1.    From Irma Cruz, Assistant City Clerk minutes of February 20, 2018.

2.    The Committee on Ordinance to whom was referred an order  that the DPW consider a 4-way stop sign at Washington Ave./ Charles St. intersection  Recommend that the Council adopt the recommendation of the DPW Director

3.    The Committee on Ordinance to whom was referred an order that the DPW places a stop sign at the intersection of Judith St. and Sheehan Dr. There have been multiple instances of near collisions with cars turning from Judas St. onto Sheehan Dr. without stopping. This is a constituent request.  Recommend that the Council adopt the recommendations of the DPW director



4.    From Mayor Alex B. Morse letter re: final report from Clifton Larsen Allen.

5.    From Mayor Alex B. Morse letter re: Clifton Larson Allen Engagement Letter.

6.    From Mayor Alex B. Morse letter reappointing Ms. Elizabeth A. Larivee, 198 Pleasant St. to serve as a member of the Commission on Disabilities for the City of Holyoke;  Ms. Larivee will serve a three-year term; said term will expire on March 2021.

7.    From Irma Cruz, Assistant City Clerk minutes from March 6, 2018.

8.    From Bellamy Schmidt, City Auditor, Monthly Budget Reports as of December 31, 2017.

9.    From Bellamy H. Schmidt, Acting City Auditor re: Debit card, copy of the warrant for the City Christmas Tree.

10.    From Bellamy H. Schmidt, Acting City Auditor re: Debit Card, with written procedures established for the use of the Debit card.

11.    From Bellamy H. Schmidt, Acting City Auditor summary re:  Debit Card including department and object.

12.    From Bellamy H. Schmidt, Acting City Auditor, re: Debit Card with copies of the Auditor’s emails in regards to the City Christmas Tree.

13.    From Cheryl A. Dugrue, Executive Director Holyoke Retirement Board, letter re:  Request to Designate the Holyoke Retirement Board as Special Municipal Employees.

14.    From Terrence Murphy, Chair of Parks & Rec. Commission letter of resignation effective March 16, 2018.

15.    From Parks & Recreation Commission minutes of January 11, 2018.


16.    Petition of Karen Spear for a renewal of a home occupation at 778 Homestead Ave. for a Nail Salon.

17.    Petition of Joseph Harfoush, for a renewal of a livery license vehicle to be garaged at 395 Maple St.



18.    Ordinance Committee Reports (if any)

19.    Finance Committee Reports (if any)

19A.    The Committee on Finance to whom was referred a Communication from MA Dept. of Revenue RE: follow -up to the correspondence sent on January 19, 2018 regarding the status of Holyoke’s Annual City and Town Financial Report (Schedule A) for the Fiscal Year ended June 30, 2017.     Recommend that the communication has been received and complied with

19B.    The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order  that the auditing firm of Clifton, Lawson, and Allen appear before the City Council Finance Committee with their findings  Recommend that the order has been complied with

19C.    The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order That the City Council invite in our outside auditors, Melanson and Heath, to participate in the conversation with the former City Auditor Josh Pueschal, former City Auditor Brian Smith and former City Purchasing Director David Martins.  Recommend that the order has been complied with

19D.    The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order That the City Council (Finance Committee) invite in Auditor/former Auditor Joshua Pueschal to address his letter of resignation and finances in the city.  Also, invite in Brian Smith and David Martins  Recommend that the order has been complied with

19E.    The Committee on Finance to whom was referred an order Ordered, that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2018, Two thousand four hundred and 00/100 Dollars ($2,400.00) as follows:
FROM: Auditor’s Office
11352-54200      Office Supplies             $2,400.00
11351-51250      Temp/Seasonal             $2,400.00
                        TOTAL:$2,400.00 Recommend that the order be denied

20.    Public Safety Committee Reports (if any)

21.    Public Service Committee Reports (if any)

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

23.    Charter and Rules Committee Reports (if any)

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


25.    BARTLEY    —    WHEREAS MassDOT and the Governor have directed the
    LISI        Pioneer Valley Transit Authority (PVTA) to plan for
            level funding for the fourth year in a row; and

WHEREAS the increased costs of operating PVTA services
            at the levels needed by Holyoke and the region continue
            to rise (insurance, labor, fuel, etc.) effectively
            rendering MassDOT’s “level funding” policy a cut to
            public transportation and creating a $3.1 million
            shortfall for PVTA’s operating budget in the coming
            fiscal year; and

WHEREAS Sandra Sheehan, Administrator
            of the PVTA, warned the City of Holyoke of this situation
            at a Development & Governmental Relations (DGR) subcommittee
            hearing on November 13, 2017 and Tim Brennan, Ex.
            Director of the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission,
            appeared before the DGR committee on September 25,
            2017, to also advise the City of Holyoke on this matter;
WHEREAS PVTA is now forced to respond by reducing
            service and raising fares for Holyoke residents who
            depend the most on the bus and can least afford to
            pay higher prices; and
WHEREAS the proposed cuts
            in service on Saturdays will be especially harmful
            for Holyoke residents who depend on the bus and who
            will no longer be able to shop for groceries, commute
            to work, visit family and friends, and make other
            trips that are necessary for the vitality of our local
            economy and the quality of life of our community;
WHEREAS this forced reduction in bus service
            does not help the City, the region, and the Commonwealth
            achieve our shared goals of reducing energy use and
            greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector;
WHEREAS statewide funding in the FY2019 state
            budget dedicated to regional transit authorities,
            including the PVTA, was anticipated by the Transportation
            Reform Act of 2009 to be $88 million, and that this
            amount reflects the true and actual needs of PVTA
            and its sister RTAs for preserving existing levels
            of service; and
WHEREAS the $80.4 million set
            by MassDOT and the Governor would result in the loss
            of approximately 20% of all PVTA service within less
            than one year;
            City of Holyoke urges in the strongest terms that
            the members of the General Court fund the Regional
            Transit Authority line item in their respective FY2019
            budgets at no less than $88 million.

26.    BARTLEY    —    The City Council create a “temporary sign” ordinance that regulates when such temporary signs can be placed in homeowners’ yards and on commercial buildings or otherwise in public view.  The ordinance should regulate when the sign(s) can be installed, the sign(s) size as well as the deadline by when the sign(s) must be removed.  The ordinance could then impose a penalty on the property owner and/or the vendor or candidate in whose favor the sign is for.  The ordinance should also describe which city department(s) shall enforce this ordinance.  (Background: my purpose in filing this order is not to punish vendors or political candidates but to emphasize that campaigns, for example, are only finite by nature and any political signs should only be temporary themselves and not be permanently posted in lawns or on buildings.   This Order’s intent is not to impose regulating the content of the vendor or political candidate’s speech but only to preserve aesthetic appeal and traffic safety.)  Any current political signs leftover from past campaigns shall not be exempt from this ordinance.

27.    BARTLEY    —    The chain link fence at Lt. William J. Sheard Playground be removed unless there’s some rationale reason for keeping it in place.  If it cannot be removed, then please explain why and at least replace it with something more attractive and that doesn’t become a magnet for plastic bags and litter.

28.    BARTLEY    —    the Mayor please budget for appropriate signage for the parking spaces on the City Hall deck and that the DPW order signs pursuant to ordinance 86-106 (b)(1)(ii).

29.    BARTLEY    —    the Mayor please budget for ongoing professional education for City Hall management and employees, as necessary

30.    BRESNAHAN    —    the Fire Chief and/or Board of Commissions come before the  council to discuss if their plan for more firefighters per apparatus is being fulfilled.  As discussed by the Fire Chief and Commissioners in previous public meetings and press releases that if an engine was blacked out this would allow the Fire Dept. to assign more firefighters to apparatus.  Further, please provide the  Council with the staffing records for all apparatus from July 1st, 2017 to March 1st 2018.

31.    LEAHY    —    That that DPW and their third party contractor submit a schedule of planned street sweeping (by ward and street) to the City Council by no later than April 15, 2018.  The purpose is to allow residents to plan vehicle parking and sidewalk cleaning in an orderly fashion and further set a date certain when all city streets will be swept.

32.    LEBRON-MARTINEZ    —    That a handicap sign be placed in front of 49 No. East St. for Ana Cruz Nazario.

33.    MCGEE    —    Order that the city council set the tax rate for FY 2018.

34.    MCGEE    —    that Section 6.4.7 of zoning be sent back to ordinance to be amended in order to be in conformity with the rest of the sign ordinances under the zoning code

35.    MCGIVERIN    —    that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2018, Four thousand three hundred forty-one and 52/100 Dollars ($4341.52) as follows:

12101-51107    Patrolmen        $4341.52
        TOTAL:    $4341.52
12101-51180    Injured on Duty        $4341.52
        TOTAL:    $4341.52

36.    MCGIVERIN    —    that the amount of Two thousand two hundred twenty-one and 65/100 Dollars ($2221.65) be authorized from the DPW Department’s Professional Services (14222-53010), Seventy-eight and 00/100 Dollars ($78) be authorized from the Professional Services (14222-53010), Ninety-five and 00/100 Dollars ($) be authorized from the Professional Services (14222-53010) appropriation in fiscal year 2018 for services rendered in fiscal year 2017 which were unencumbered at the 2017 fiscal year end.

37.    MCGIVERIN    —    that there be and is hereby appropriated by transfer in the fiscal year 2018, Three thousand twelve and 64/100 Dollars ($3,012.64) as follows:

15432-57600    Patriotic Events        $3,012.64
        TOTAL:    $3,012.64
15431-51104    Pay-Head Clerk        $3,012.64
        TOTAL:    $3,012.64

38.    MCGIVERIN    —    the City Council amend the sewer rate ordinance adjusting
    LISI        the deficit in their sewer budget.

39.    MCGIVERIN    —    Order to establish all Retirement Board positions as special municipal employees. 

40.    MCGIVERIN    —    Order to establish a fee to accompany tort claims to the city law department. Suggested fee $15. Successful claims would be granted fee reimbursement. 

41.    MCGIVERIN    —    That the City of Holyoke appropriate the amount of Thirteen Million Seven
Hundred Ninety Seven Thousand Five Hundred Eighty One Dollars ($13,797,581.00)
for the purpose of paying costs of Boiler and Window replacement at the Dr. Marcella R.
Kelly Elementary School at 216 West St Holyoke and Window Replacements at the Lt.
Clayre Sullivan Elementary School at 400 Jarvis Ave, Holyoke and the William G. Morgan
Elementary School at 596 South Bridge St., Holyoke including the payment of all costs
incidental or related thereto (the “Project”), which proposed repair project would materially
extend the useful life of the school and preserve an asset that otherwise is capable of
supporting the required educational program, and for which the City of Holyoke has applied
for a grant from the Massachusetts School Building Authority (“MSBA”), said amount to be
expended under the direction of Holyoke Public Schools. To meet this appropriation the City
of Holyoke, is authorized to borrow said amount under M.G.L. Chapter 44, or pursuant to
any other enabling authority. The City of Holyoke acknowledges that the MSBA’s grant
program is a non-entitlement, discretionary program based on need, as determined by the
MSBA, and if the MSBA’s Board of Directors votes to invite the City to collaborate with the
MSBA on this proposed repair project, any project costs the City of Holyoke incurs in excess
of any grant that may be approved by and received from the MSBA shall be the sole
responsibility of the City of Holyoke; and that, if invited to collaborate with the MSBA on
the proposed repair project, the amount of borrowing authorized pursuant to this vote
shall be reduced by any grant amount set forth in the Project Funding Agreement that
may be executed between the City of Holyoke and the MSBA.

42.    SULLIVAN    —    That the Honorable City Council, in accordance with
    VALENTIN        M.G.L. c. 30B and the Holyoke Procurement Ordinance,
            vote to accept an offer from OneHolyoke CDC to purchase
            a parcel of land located at 278 Pine Street for $1.
            Said Parcel contains approximately 0.19 acres and
            is described in Holyoke Assessors’ records as Map
            004, Block 06, Parcel 013 and being more particularly
            described in deeds recorded in the Hampden County
            Registry of Deeds Book 21088, Page 399. The parcel
            is zoned Downtown Residential (DR) and has an assessed
            value of $31,200.

43.    VACON    —    that speed limit signs (30mph) be installed on Mt Rd ( request 2-3 on each side of the road).

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

Posted on March 16, 2018 by