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Selectmen, Police, Sustainable Westford Pleased With Farmers’ Market Procedures

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The following is a portion of a transcript from the Nov. 18 Westford Board of Selectmen meeting. For other parts of the meeting, click here.

7:30 p.m. – The meeting began with the Pledge of Allegiance and Open Forum.

Selectman Kelly Ross began Open Forum by praising the Westford Police Department’s K9 Unit for work they recently did aiding in helping the Salem Police Department with an issue involving a suspect barricaded inside a home and an explosive device.

Next was a thank you to Pat Matheson, a retiring employee at the J.V. Fletcher Library. Library Trustee Bob Price also praised Matheson.

Don Siriani on Nov. 18
Don Siriani on Nov. 18

The Open Forum concluded by an announcement that Chairman Scott Hazelton will be participating remotely.

7:32 p.m. – Next was determining dates of a three day license suspension for Evviva Cucina and Westford Market and Liquors.

The board had been waiting for a decision from the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission (ABCC), and had continued the item several times in the past.

However, on this evening there was a decision to close the public hearing since there has been no decision from the ABCC regarding when the license suspension dates made by the ABCC will occur.

During earlier meetings, the Selectmen wished to levy suspension dates on top of suspension dates from the ABCC even though the ABCC noticed the violations.

The Selectmen’s decision was appealed to the ABCC by owners of Evviva Cucina, and the Selectmen can’t act until the ABCC decision until a jurisdictional clarification.

A motion to close the public hearing was approved 4-0-0.

7:33 p.m. – The town accepted a check from Circle Health for $50,000 for health initiatives to be pursued by the Health Department.

Lowell General Hospital is the hospital outreach arm of Circle Health.

Lowell General Hospital President Jody White said its one of the hospital’s jobs to get into their nearby communities and improve local health.

Zac Cataldo of the Board of Health thanked White for the grant.

Selectman Andrea Peraner-Sweet asked Cataldo and Westford Health Department Director Sandy Collins how the money is will be spent and how a decision on that spending plan was obtained.

Catalado said the town accountant had set up an account and assessment on how the grant will be used specifically has not been determined yet, but a broad plan has been established.

Peraner-Sweet asked if the Board of Health has reached out to other parts of town about their health needs.

Cataldo and Collins provided feedback, with Collins saying that the grant came in part to ideas Collins gave to Circle Health and many of the proposed programs have been done in previous years.

Collins said she did not give a specific dollar amount to Circle Health, only ideas.

Peraner-Sweet asked Collins and Cataldo to keep new ideas in mind. Collins said she would and the hospital will be kept in the loop on how the money is spent.

Selectman Don Siriani praised Circle Health for the contribution and believes it will go a long way in helping the town.

Hazelton echoed the earlier sentiments.

A motion to accept the gift was made. It was approved 4-0-0.

7:36 p.m. – Zac Cataldo, now speaking on behalf of the Westford Farmers’ Market, began a presentation reviewing the 2014 Farmers’ Market season.

Cataldo began with a letter from Westford Recreation Department Director Pat Savage.

Savage had a list of concerns, but Cataldo said the only concern that actually occurred was an electrical issue.

Regarding some of the other concerns

  • Children may have played on the Town Common cannon, but he said that occurs regularly
  • Benches were placed back in their original positions if they were moved.
  • The hose was not used.
  • No children were outside of parental supervision.

Cataldo said he was concerned about these allegations along with others and told the Selectmen they take the care of the Town Common very seriously.

Selectman Kelly Ross said they’re good points of emphasis to keep in mind even if they are not happening.

Westford Police Department Captain Mark Chambers said the Police Department was pleased with communications between the Farmers’ Market and the Police Department, stating there were only a few parking issues but no other safety concerns.

Ross said that it seems a successful formula has been found for the Farmers’ Market.

Selectman Don Siriani said he was pleased with the way the season unfolded and the Farmers’ Market did a good job cleaning up after market days. He encouraged any ideas for improvement.

Cataldo praised volunteers from Westford Academy.

Selectman Scott Hazelton said that there are always minor issues with any event, but overall, the Farmers’ Market was a positive for Westford.