MSH legislation scheduled for signing 8/2

Email from Bill Massaro about the Medfield State Hospital land urchase bill being lined up on teh Governor’s desk for signing on 8/2/14.  Who knew that bills get assigned signing dates a week in advance.

FYI,

Here  is the link to legislation on the Governor’s desk:

http://www.mass.gov/governor/legislationeexecorder/update/

 

According to the latest (7/28) posting, the MSH Purchase is scheduled for action on August 2.

On the Governor’s Desk

Update on legislation on the Governor’s desk for review and action.

All Legislation on the Governor’s Desk

6.  H. 4216, “An Act Authorizing the Commissioner of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance to Convey Certain Parcels of Land in the Town of Medfield”

                       Sponsors: Rep. Garlick and Sen. Timility

                        Action Due: 08/02/2014

Bill


 

Governor’s Opioid Task Force

This article on the opioid addiction issue was in the Massachusett Municipal Association’s monthly newsletter, The Bulletin -


 

Opioid Task Force releases recommendations

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July 16, 2014

The governor’s Opioid Task Force on June 10 released recommendations in the areas of prevention, intervention, treatment and recovery that are intended to strengthen the state’s ability to respond to the opioid crisis.

The 36-member task force met three times over a period of 60 days. The task force comprised state and local officials, insurers, first responders, providers, patients, and the judiciary. Mayors Martin Walsh of Boston, Domenic Sarno of Springfield and Thomas Hoye of Taunton participated.

The task force was created following the governor’s declaration in March of a public health emergency relative to opioid overdoses. In response to the crisis, the governor pledged $20 million in state funding to boost treatment and recovery services. He asked the task force to develop priorities for how the funding should be spent.

The task force found that:
• There is a need for increased education for youth and families about the dangers of drug use.
• There is a need for increased education for prescribers to ensure safe and effective pain management.
• There are opportunities to improve the prescribing and dispensing of controlled substances.
• There is a need for centralized treatment resources, while individuals and families report challenges in accessing services beyond simply knowing where they are.
• Providers and consumers express concerns about barriers to access.
• Correctional facilities are an important site of care for opioid addiction.
• There is a need for peer support in the recovery process.
• There is a need for expanded recovery services across the state.

The task force recommended the allocation of the $20 million to 24 separate initiatives. The top three priorities of the task force included:
• Development of a central navigation system that could be accessed through a toll-free number to provide information about treatment options and current availability (at an annual cost of $1.45 million)
• Creation of pilot regional centers that provide assessment, drop-in counseling and referral to treatment on demand, leveraging existing treatment organizations (at an annual cost of $1.8 million)
• Development of prescription drug monitoring program infrastructure to support safe practices for the prescription of opioids and new regulations related to the Public Health Emergency and accelerated enrollment of prescribers (at an annual cost of $1.5 million)

The increase in fatal opioid overdoses in Massachusetts parallels a national trend, with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services deeming prescription opioid overdose deaths an epidemic in 2013.

For the full task force report, visit: www.mass.gov/eohhs/docs/dph/substance-abuse/opioid/report-of-the-opioid-task-force-6-10-14.pdf

Written by MMA Legislative Analyst J. Catherine Rollins

Medfield meals tax started 7/1/14

This article from the Massachusetts Municipal Associaiton -


192 communities have adopted local-option meals tax

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July 16, 2014

On July 1, eight communities joined the 182 that already assess a local-option meals tax, with at least two additional communities set to have the tax go into effect in October.

This brings the number of communities statewide that have adopted a local meals tax to 192, including the 19 communities that chose to enact a meals tax in the past year.

Though the meals tax is only three-quarters of 1 percent, it provides an opportunity for communities to bring in significant additional revenue. For example, revenue estimates from the Division of Local Services for fiscal 2013 show that Provincetown earned $518,320, Burlington earned $1.34 million, and Northampton earned $664,346.

Using revenue estimates from the Division of Local Services, the MMA calculated that the potential revenue that could have been collected by cities and towns if all communities had a meals tax was $110 million. Based on the number of communities that have adopted the tax so far, the MMA estimates that 90 percent of potential revenue is being collected and returned to cities and towns.

The towns of Dracut and Essex had the meals tax go into effect last October. Five communities – Grafton, Granby, Pembroke, Salisbury and Sharon – instituted the meals tax in January. Ashland and Marlborough had the tax go into effect in April.

Attleboro, Berlin, Bourne, Georgetown, Holyoke, Medfield, Plymouth, and Spencer had the tax go into effect on July 1. Carver and West Bridgewater will begin assessing the tax starting this October.

Using revenue figures from the DLS, the MMA calculated that 18 of these 19 communities are projected to collect more than $5 per capita from the meals tax, and 10 will collect more than $10 per capita, according to the Division of Local Services. Essex is expected to bring in $47 per capita, and Salisbury and West Bridgewater are projected to collect $28 per capita.

More than 260 communities in Massachusetts have the opportunity to collect at least $5 per capita from the meals tax. Out of these 263 cities and towns, 182 have adopted the meals tax, which means that 69 percent of cities and towns in Massachusetts that could collect significant revenue have taken advantage of the meals tax.

The local-option meals tax became law in 2009. Cities and towns that accept the provisions of Chapter 64L may levy a local meals tax of three-quarters of 1 percent, which takes effect on the first day of the calendar quarter following 30 days after acceptance.

Written by MMA Reasearch & Legislative Assistant Victoria Sclafani

Cut the vine

This from Chris McCue -


7/28/2014 11:40AM
Community needs to cut the vine!
===========================================================
Hi Pete,

Conservation Commission member George Darrell and I live just several houses away on Curve St. and we recently discovered that we’re
both concerned about the rate that invasive plants are taking over Medfield, and we’re joining forces to educate residents and town
organizations about how they can help control them. We welcome anyone else who wants to help (not a big time commitment – probably
seasonal based on particular problem at hand).

Right now we’re focused on the Black Swallow-wort vine that is particularly invasive in Medfield since it’ll be going to seed in
about 1-2 weeks. See Patch article:

http://patch.com/massachusetts/medfield/92e97ee6-0c24-47ce-be1e-88b18367e720#.U9ZmcPldWSo

If you can help get the word out via your blog and encourage people to cut any vines back on their property before the seed pods
open – and encourage them to dispose of the vines in the trash (not yard waste or Transfer Station) — that would be a big help.
Pulling the vines out is a big task, but cutting off vines that have seed pods can be done relatively easily with a “weed whacker”
or hedge trimmer. The vines will come back and need to be cut again, but at least the seeds have been removed in the short term.

We need the town’s help too. Next time you’re at Town Hall, check out the area along the upper west side of the building – along the
fence and in the shrub area adjacent to Starbucks (the photo in the Patch article only shows a small section of the problem). That
swath of land is covered in this vine that now has countless numbers of seed pods. The vines have already started to spread in the
bed along the ground floor of the building near the back entrance, and they’re covering a rhododendron alongside the upper area of
the building. Cutting those vines will help prevent the spread of the vine elsewhere in town, but it has to happen ASAP. (The
library is also getting this vine again after George’s efforts in the past to eradicate it.)

At the very least, any chance you or someone else can get the DPW folks to cut all of the vines around Town Hall back before the
pods open?  Another troublesome spot is alongside Curve St. on the embankment that leads down to the tennis courts, and George or I
will reach out to Jim Snyder at Parks & Rec to see how we might tackle that site. Unfortunately, there are many other sites around
town (public & private) where the vine has taken over, so we’ll need a coordinated approach between the town organizations and
residents to help with the problem.

Anything you can do to spread the word, and persuade our various town organizations to help with this problem, would be much
appreciated.

As always, thanks!

Chris

Dover cell tower hearing over to 10/8

The applicant seeking permission to construct the cell tower in Dover that is accessed from Evergreen Way asked to have the 8/4/14 continued hearing date postponed, and the ZBA has set 10/8/14 as the continued date.

The legislature does not appear to have acted as yet on the bill that would strip local control over almost all siting of cell towers.

The Dover cell tower applicant’s attorney’s email from last Friday stated -


The Dover Sherborn School District has finally issued an RFP for a telecommunications tower lease at the HS property.  Given this development, my client is respectfully asking that the upcoming August 4th ZBA hearing on its application and related balloon float demonstration be continued for at least 60 days while the bid submission and selection process occurs.  Please let me know if this is acceptable and to what date the hearing could be continued.  From there, I will prepare a written continuance request letter in the format that you have required in the past.

Mural on side of Brothers Marketplace

This is what the mural on the side of the Brothers Marketplace is going to look like, per the plans submitted to the town, that are displayed on an easel just inside the front door of the Town House.  The photo and the intelligence to take the photo are both courtesy of much missed former Medfield Patch editor, par extraordinaire, Theresa Knapp.

photo of mural

Unanimous!

Just like at the special town meeting, the Medfield State Hospital purchase legislation passed unanimously in the legislature.  See the email notice below from Representative Shawn Dooley.
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7/23/2014 6:06PM
Medfield bill
Dooley, Shawn
===========================================================
I’m sure you heard: Passed unanimously now on way to Governor for his signature.

Sent from my iPhone