Plympton selectmen met Monday, July 27, and gave updates on the committees they are forming to address goals for this coming year.
Selectman Colleen Thompson’s Public Safety Building Committee with seven members including the Chief of Police and the Fire Chief who will serve in advisory roles. The committee could use one more member, Thompson said.
Selectperson Christine Joy met with Town Moderator John Traynor, to discuss the recent report of the Department of Revenue which outlined areas of concern in the way the town handles its finances.
Finance Committee chairman Susan Ossoff will serve in an advisory role. The committee is still seeking members and anyone interested should contact the selectmen’s office at 781-585-2700.
Chairman Mark Russo had nothing new to report on his area of focus: internal and external communication improvements in town government.
Selectman Colleen Thompson and former Selectman John Henry have been working on the Blue Wave solar proposal which has been tied up in litigation for months with an abutter and continues to be stalled. The board approved contacting IRC Solar Roof Systems, a Maine company, to have them present their proposal to install and maintain a solar array on the Dennett Elementary School roof. They ask in return that Plympton sign a 20-year power purchase agreement.
Among the board’s correspondence was a letter from a private company, US Soccer, requesting the use of Plympton’s soccer fields by two of their teams, twice a week. The company indicated that they would be willing to pay rent and also train the town’s soccer coaches at no charge.
Chairman Russo asked other board members if they were aware of any other situation where the town would rent the town fields to out of town agencies. They had not.
Town Co-ordinator Dale Pleau suggested that if the board wanted to pursue the concept, they might consider Harry Jason Field for the soccer club as it is hardly used at this time. Selectmen tabled it to give the board more time to fully investigate the company and its proposal.
Selectperson Joy read the request of the organization AJC-Global Jewish Advocacy asking selectmen to join mayors of major cities such as Boston, New York, San Francisco, in signing a statement denouncing anti-Semitism in all forms worldwide. According to the letter of request, the effort is an international push for community leaders to stand in solidarity against hatred.
Joy told the board she wished the wording had been more inclusive, fighting all types of discrimination. Russo stated, “this is one small step toward that goal.” The board unanimously signed the statement.
Linda Leddy, noted the Express newspaper accounts of grants being awarded to Halifax and asked what steps Plympton is taking to secure grant funding. She asked specifically about the Commonwealth Community Compact grant from the office of Governor Charlie Baker which asks communities to apply for monies to promote best practices in municipal government. The program is under the direction of Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. She also noted the Halifax Fire Department grant for emergency equipment for their two ambulances. “I think we should be going for whatever money we can get,” Leddy said. Pleau said he will look into it.
In other business:
• Zoning Board of Appeals member Ken Thompson told selectmen that even though there is an opening on the ZBA, he wanted to let the board know that membership on his board takes a person with a number of qualifications and experience to be effective.
• Art Morin, chairman of the Board of Health, said that the town would no longer offer blood pressure clinics due to the expense. He recommended senior citizens and others go to the pharmacy or to the doctor’s where they can check their blood pressure for free.
• Xfinity is making changes to their product bundles and tv packages. Selectmen advised citizens to cable bills for more information.
• The inter-municipal agreement for Plympton to join Area 58 Community Access Media was received the morning of the meeting. Russo told the board it could be signed as early as at the next meeting.
• Anyone interested in any committee openings are asked to contact Selecten’s Assistant Kristen LeVangie at 781-585-2700.
• Appointed to the Public Safety Building Committee were Colleen Thompson, Nancy Butler, Robert “Jake” Jacobsen, Henry Weikel, Arthur Morin and Robert Karling.
The board will next meet on Monday, August 10.