Noise complaints from dog barking will end, as Tarawood Kennel owner Jennifer Choate is closing down the facility on August 10, 2017 and relocating to New Hampshire. Choate confirmed the closing of the kennel at 7 Plymouth Street in Halifax at a dog hearing at the Halifax Selectmen’s meeting Tuesday, July 26, 2017.
A dog hearing occurred last year for the kennel’s dogs’ barking and being outside at night and as early as 5 and 6 a.m. Resident Shawn Clarkson expressed that he doesn’t think the problem has improved since last year.
Clarkson said, “Dogs are still barking and there’s no end to it. They’re still barking early in the morning, 5 or 6 o’clock in the morning.”
With this most recent complaint, both Animal Control Officer Noreen Callahan and Selectmen Vice Chair Kim Roy paid separate visits to the kennel. Callahan came for an annual inspection, while Roy was assessing the noise from complaints.
Callahan said she didn’t hear any barking during this particular visit. Roy said she visited and there was barking. She didn’t think it was as bad as the year before, but there was still barking. Roy did note she’s not living there though.
Jennifer Choate disagreed that the dogs are barking excessively and disagreed with them being a nuisance. Choate said she wishes it wasn’t still coming to this a year later and confirmed that it won’t be an issue after she relocates. Choate said, “The property is sold and closing on August 10, 2017.” She said the plan is to vacate the property with the dogs.
On Thursday, July 20, ACO Callahan completed her inspection of Tarawood Kennels. She confirmed the dog numbers were correct, but not all paperwork was presented until this selectmen’s meeting. The Board believes Choate did not fully cooperate with the nature of a random inspection due to failed attempts by Callahan to inspect the property and Choate’s voice mail box being full.
Choate said she never refused Callahan entry to her property, to which Roy answered, she “respectfully disagreed”. Selectman Clerk Troy Garron said that whether intentional or not an inspection agreement was broken here.
Choate reiterated her position saying, “She’s (ACO Callahan) welcome anytime, and the times she wasn’t able to enter I wasn’t there or was on her way out back loading multiple things.” Choate said she’s in the middle of relocating a 30 horse facility along with the kennel.
Selectmen chose to let the complaint come to a natural close since Choate is moving in a few weeks. The Board did say it’s ordering the dogs vacate the property by August 11, 2017.
Sealer of Weights and Measures interviews
The Halifax Board of Selectmen scheduled three interviews for the town’s open sealer of weights and measures position. The Board had interviews with Charles Norvish, David Moore, and Robert O’Rourke.
Charles Norvish was the first candidate interviewed by the board. When Chairman Tom Millias asked Norvish to talk about his experience, Norvish joked, “We don’t have that much time tonight.”
Norvish has been the sealer of weights and measures for Middleboro since 1986. According to Norvish, Middleboro has 17 gas pumps and more than 150 scales. Halifax has much less in comparison.
Selectman Garron asked Norvish why he’s interested in the job because he seems very busy. Norvish said, “The good thing is these jobs are part-time; the bad thing is they’re part time.” Charles also cited an “old school attitude” and that he’s done multiple jobs for a while. Norvish said, “I have no regrets.”
The next candidate, David Moore, said he’s been involved with town government for over 40 years starting in Bridgewater and Carver. He owns his own sealing equipment, which, according to Moore, can cost a town $3,000-4,000, so he said there’s a saving benefit here.
The board told Moore they liked that he says he sets his scales according to the fiscal year as well as the calendar year. Moore said this is useful for towns when planning their budget.
Moore said he’ll provide selectmen with a database of the spots (pumps, etc.) he tests. Selectmen plan to make a decision when they meet August 8.
The last candidate, Robert O’Rourke withdrew his application at the interview. He said the board is in good hands with either Norvish or Moore and is welcome to help down the line.
The Board of Selectmen reappointed the following election workers:
• Andrea Delaney • Paul Delaney • Carol Keene • Cathleen Miller • Amelia Mosley • Lee Mulready • Judith Wall
•Marion Heath • Gayle Peck • Richard Roche
• Robert Doherty • Kathryn Roche • Kenneth Vinton
Jocelyn Anderson of Plympton ran her first marathon Monday in Boston with Tedy’s Team, in support of the American Stroke Association. She raised almost $11,000 to help fund stroke research. She ran in memory of her father, John Anderson, who died after suffering a stroke 15 years ago. Tedy Bruschi, a member of the New England Patriots, suffered a stroke at the age of 31 and has committed himself to being an advocate and inspiration for stroke survivors everywhere. Jocelyn’s personal goal was to finish the race, raise awareness about stroke, help fund stroke research, and although it was dark when the finish line came into view, the light from her smile at meeting her goal was light enough.
By James Bentley
On November 30, the Plympton Public Safety Building Committee met to discuss plans for new police and fire stations. The committee expressed concern that actual cost will exceed the estimated cost the committee was initially given.
Historic Commission chairman Jon Wilhelmsen said, “When you look at the study that was done before, they did not suggest that we were going to build a police station for a million dollars. It did not say anything close to that.”
The committee directed much of the meeting toward addressing these challenges and trying to find a way to overcome them. Wilhelmsen says, “The question is whether the $1 million or $1.5 million that’s being thrown around was ever a realistic number.”
One of the concerns addressed was the cost of the sprinkler system. Because there would be cells in the basement of the new police station, a sprinkler system is necessary there. To save on the overall cost of the station’s system, the committee suggested potentially using one tank for both the police and fire station.
Another option the committee explored was decreasing the overall size of the station. Board of Health Chairman Art Morin mentioned the square footage may need to drop to around 6000 square feet.
Morin said, “We might like to have something, but they might not be practical within cost … It’s not that you’re trying to make everyone work out of a tiny space, cramped space, but there are some things that we are going to have to give up.”
The board discussed some of the items Police Chief Pat Dillon was willing to cut. He thinks the square footage can be brought down to between 7,200-7,500 square feet.
Morin believes the size can be cut more if no fitness center is included in the new police station. He did admit this would probably not be a popular decision.
The committee still has work to do to address these challenges, but they did discuss another plan that has the station at around 5,800 square feet. Options will continue to be explored at the next meeting scheduled on December 20, 2016.
By Kimberly Cicone
Special to the Express
Most of the 593 students of Halifax Elementary School took to the fields Wednesday, October 26th, to participate in the 18th Annual Turkey Trot. Each year, the Turkey Trot focuses on healthy habits, school spirit, and recognition of a month-long food drive that benefits the Helping Hands of Halifax.
Students ran the Turkey Trot by grade level in a cross- country style run around the Halifax athletic fields culminating with a healthy snack provided by Nessralla’s Farm and hot chocolate courtesy of Halifax Walmart and Halifax Elementary School PTO.
Throughout the month of October, students, families, and local businesses have generously donated food items to be passed on to the pantry. Proudly, 1275 donations were made by the students. At the center of the donation are turkeys, an all-time high of 40 turkeys were purchased by the generous donations from local families, teachers and local businesses. Alex Meade, a Halifax parent and owner of Preferred Mechanical Services of Pembroke, pledged 15 turkeys for the third year in a row. Many thanks to all that donated!
In early November, the following Halifax Elementary School students, by virtue of their exemplary performances at the Turkey Trot, will help present our donation to members of the Helping Hands of Halifax.
1st Graders: Logan Hellisek, Riley Walkus, AJ Saba, Brielle Robinson, Leland Dowd, Jake Ledwell, Monica Rekford, Brayden Toon, Alyssa McPhearson, and Ryan Carroll.
2nd Graders: Wiley Makepeace, Max McEwan, John Lindsay, Lilliana Parmeggiani, Jaelyn Guimares, Emily Keegan, Kylie Walsh, Quinn Pomella, and Aubrey Quirke.
3rd Graders: Kylie Soucie, Thomas Powers, Ava Carroll, Tyler Carroll, Mason Gilcoine, Alivia Phillip, Caitlin Snow, Ashton Rosano, and Zachary Peach.
4th Graders: Cassidy Conroy & Michael Delaney
5th Graders: Katie Dyer, Nick Najaulis, and Jack Quigley.
6th Graders: Megan Laliberte and Daniel Sullivan.
The Halifax Fire Department would like to graciously thank the Halifax Walmart for their generous donation of $2000.
Every year the fire department applies for local, state and federal grants and puts the money to good use in purchasing state of the art equipment, protective gear and training.
Like anything else the purchase of advanced equipment and gear weighs heavily on department budgets and we rely on the grant process to supplement our capital and operating budgets.
This money will be used in purchasing a new SCBA mask with a built-in Thermal Imager camera. The SCBA mask (Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus) is what we use to enter hostile and hazardous environments. The Thermal Imaging component of it further enhances our operational capability by giving us the ability to see radiant heat signatures in a smoke filled environment.
These heat signatures are used to detect other people or firefighters who may be in danger or in need of a rescue. This mask will be put to use right away on our front line piece of apparatus and will help give us another cutting edge that we need to effectively do our jobs.
Captain Jeffrey Cuozzo, Halifax Fire Department
What do you know about ticks and what diseases they may carry? The health agent from Halifax Board of Health and the public health nurse from NVNA and Hospice address awareness needs and concerns of tick-borne diseases in a special health program scheduled later this month. Offered free to the general public in Halifax on September 20 and September 28, the program addresses personal protection measures to prevent tick bites as well as signs and symptoms of tick-borne illnesses and measures to take if you have been bitten by a tick. A question and answer period follows the presentation.
People can choose from two presentation dates: Tuesday September 20, 2016 at 1pm and Wednesday September 28, 2016 at 6:30 pm. Both are offered free at the Holmes Library in Halifax. For more information or questions, please contact the Halifax Board of Health at 781-293-6768.
As of August 15, Halifax and surrounding towns are listed as a “low risk” community for EEE and WnV.
The Halifax Board of Health has been notified about a mosquito with EEE (Eastern Equine Encephalitis) in Middleborough (July 12) and one in Kingston (August 15). It was found in a Culex mosquito, the Culex restuans. Natural and artificial containers are the preferred larval habitat of this mosquito. It feeds almost primarily on birds but has been known to bite humans on occasion. This species is typically collected from May to October but can be found year round as it readily overwinters in man-made structures.
Cx restuans has been implicated as a vector of WNV. Take this bird biter as a warning. People have control over stagnant water in containers: buckets, tarps, tires, etc. Rinse them out, turn them over.
Rinse bird baths at least twice a week.
Residents should continue to take precautions including removing all containers with standing water such as accumulating junk in the yard, not maintaining swimming pools and allowing them to sit with green stagnant water, along with toys, tarps and tires.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health wrote:
Although there has been less evidence of EEE activity this year than in some recent years, the late heat and humidity this summer are perfect conditions for mosquito activity.
The peak time for transmission of EEE will continue through at least some of September.
The types of mosquitoes most likely to carry EEE are considered to be active dusk to dawn but the timing of that activity can be impacted by temperature, humidity, cloud cover and day length. In addition, active participation in outdoor sports increases our availability to mosquitoes. Physical exertion and sweating may also change individual attractiveness to mosquitoes and may decrease the time that repellents are effective.
DPH is writing to ask you to help us get the word out to residents, schools and athletic groups, that it is important to take steps to avoid mosquito bites. Know the drill – mosquito repellents, clothing and limiting outdoor activity during peak mosquito activity hours.
Also, keep in mind that our residents travel between cities and towns regularly and some of those may travel from areas not familiar with EEE. They may not be mindful of the importance of preventing mosquito bites. Please remind them.
To call for ground spraying of your property, call Plymouth County Mosquito Control at 781 585 5450.
Individuals can call the Project, between 8:00am and 3:00pm on Monday through Friday, to request that their property be sprayed. The Project’s phone number is (781) 585-5450, fax (781) 582-1276 or mail us at P.O. Box 72, Kingston, MA 02364. To find out where the spray routes are going to be, call (617) 582-6219 (during spray season). Plymouth County Mosquito Control Project
For more information on EEE and WNv, please see DPH’s site at: http://www.mass.gov.