The July 21, 2022 Meeting of the Barnstable Town Council was conducted remotely and physically closed to the public. Alternative public access was provided through Zoom. Town Council President Matthew Levesque opened the meeting asking Town Councilor Paul Hebert to lead the Pledge of Allegiance. President Levesque offered the Moment of Silence continuing to remember what is going on in Ukraine and its neighboring countries. Next up was Public Comment followed by Council Response to Public Comment. Town Manager Mark Ells presented his Town Manager Communications for the period of June 17-July 21, 2022.
- Karen Nober, Town Attorney, shall provide an update regarding the Conservation Law Foundation Clean Water Act lawsuit against the Town of Barnstable.
- Sara Ahern, Superintendent of Barnstable Public Schools, shall provide an introduction to Town Council.
- On June 1, 2022, the Town of Barnstable was informed of regulatory revisions the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) is developing to ensure that timely actions are taken to restore and protect coastal estuaries that have been impacted by excessive nitrogen pollution. The two regulatory approaches they developed and plan to publish for public comment shortly provide communities with choices on how to address the growing pollution problems affecting our waters. The two proposed changes involve (1) revising Title 5 regulations to establish “Nitrogen Sensitive Areas” (NSAs) for watersheds draining into an estuary where there is an EPA-approved “Total Maximum Daily Load,” which finds that the estuary is impaired by nitrogen and (2) a regulatory revision to formally establish the “watershed permit.” These permits are 20-year permits that are based on long-term wastewater plans that will achieve water quality goals and provide communities the opportunity to utilize a range of approaches, including centralized sewer treatment and innovative approaches. We met with MassDEP on July 6, 2022 to further discuss these proposed changes and we have drafted a letter summarizing our comments on the proposed changes for MassDEP’s consideration as they finalize their draft regulations. We plan to issue that letter early next week. On July 14, 2022 at a Cape and Island Town Manager’s meeting DEP Commissioner Martin Suuberg and staff presented a similar update on the development of changes to the Title 5 regulations (attached). We plan to submit written comments on the presentation and participate in draft review of proposed regulations as soon as such draft regulations are issued. We will keep you advised as these important regulatory revisions progress.
- We continue to have regular conversations with Vineyard Wind (Phase 1 ongoing project), Park City Wind (Phase 2 in permitting phase) and Commonwealth Wind (Phase 3 in planning phase). In a presentation by Commonwealth Wind on March 17, 2022 the proposed landing locations for cable in Osterville where shared with the Town Council. To date I have only had discussions with Commonwealth Wind (Phase 3) project representatives but have not commenced negotiations of a Host Community Agreement and shall not do so until authorized by Town Council. I will note that under the siting process for a landing such as those proposed by Vineyard Wind or its successors, they do not have to ask our permission or enter into a host agreement but it is certainly to their advantage to have a working relationship with the community with whom they seek to permit and construct such a project. At a future meeting Attorney McLaughlin of our staff can review the permitting processes and authority of the Energy Facilities Siting Board (EFSB) relevant to such a proposal as we have not reviewed the authority of the EFSB since we commenced our Phase 1 & 2 negotiations for a host community agreement. We will keep you advised of our progress on this matter.
- The Town of Barnstable and Cape Cod Commission are working on a Complete Streets plan to identify opportunities to create a more connected, efficient, and accessible roadway network. A Complete Street provides accommodations for all users including motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists, transit riders, and persons with disabilities. The purpose of this study is to explore transportation improvement alternatives that will reduce conflicts, improve traffic flow, and incorporate multi-modal transportation options in Barnstable while furthering the creation of vibrant, pedestrian and bicycle oriented mixed-use centers throughout the town. The Commission and Town want to hear from residents to help identify and establish priority efforts. Staff has held two village meetings and will be holding three more meetings in the upcoming weeks:
Tuesday July 26th 4:30 PM – Village of Hyannis
Barnstable Adult Community Center 825 Falmouth Road (Route 28), Hyannis
Thursday July 28th 4:30 PM – Village of Centerville
Centerville Public Library 585 Main Street, Centerville
Wednesday August 3rd 4:30 PM – Villages of Barnstable & West Barnstable
Saint Mary’s Episcopal Church 3055 Main Street (Route 6A), Barnstable
Residents are encouraged to attend one of the meetings to learn more about this effort and to share ideas for projects that would better support walking, biking and safe driving in the Town of Barnstable. Based on community feedback, staff will develop a draft Prioritization Plan which is a list of priority roadway improvement projects ranked by defined evaluation criteria such as increase in safety, ability to implement and community support. The public comment period for the Barnstable Complete Streets Prioritization Plan is open now through August 31, 2022. Those wishing to submit comments may do so using the Cape Cod Commission’s interactive public comment tool, by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or by attending one of the upcoming community meetings. For more information, visit the project website at: www.capecodcommission.org/barnstablecompletestreets.
- On July 1, 2022 Town Council received a working draft of new Town Manager regulations providing “grant of location” procedures and standards for wireless communication facilities located in public ways. The purpose of these regulations is to provide a uniform, publicly available, comprehensive grant of location process and standards for the location, installation, height, appearance of wireless communications facilities in the public ways, consistent with Town aesthetic and public safety criteria and with applicable state and federal law. These particular regulations do not address all potential deployments of wireless facilities, including installation on private property and on private roadways and other sites which will be addressed in additional regulations under development. This draft is being made available to the public for review and comment prior to the initiation of the formal hearing process required for adoption. It has been made available on the Town’s website on the Town Manager page.
- The Department of Public Works will hold a public information meeting on Monday, August 15th beginning at 7 pm at the Barnstable Performing Arts Center at Barnstable High School, 744 West Main Street, Hyannis to provide updates on the sewer expansion projects necessary to protect water resources. Construction of the Strawberry Hill Road Sewer Expansion Project began in September 2021. Construction on the Route 28 East Sewer Expansion Project is scheduled to start in September 2022. Together these projects extend sewer service to 400 properties and provide critical infrastructure for future sewer expansion projects. The August 15th public meeting will include updates on these projects, including anticipated construction road closures beginning this Fall. Staff from the Barnstable Department of Public Works and consultants will present project information, followed by an opportunity for questions from meeting participants. Information about the meeting is being provided to the media and all Village and Civic Associations.
- One of the most frequently asked questions I have received from our public in the past month has to do with water quality in our lakes and ponds. We are active in developing management plans for our lakes and ponds to better manage those important water resources in Barnstable. We will keep you updates as those management plans are developed, completed and implemented. Information on Water Quality and Alerts are available on the Town home page under Barnstable Water Resources | ..water quality distilled. There is also a map with all monitored ponds and other town’s ponds at the APCC at: https://apcc.org/our-work/science/community-science/cyanobacteria.
The Council then acted on the Public Session minutes. A motion to approve the decision of the Town Council President approving the Executive Session minutes of the May 19, 2022 Town Council meeting and determining that continued non-disclosure is warranted for those minutes was approved. Next was Communications. Andrew Gottlieb, Executive Director, Association to Preserve Cape Cod, and Alisa Magnotta, CEO, Housing Assistance Corporation presented the Grow Smart Cape Cod Mapping Project.
There was no OLD BUSINESS.
NEW BUSINESS began with Anne Spillane, Barnstable Police Department Finance & Support Services Director, presented Agenda Item 2023-001 Authorization to expend a Fiscal Year 2022 Legislative Earmark from the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health in the amount of $60,000 which was approved.
Agenda Item 2023-002 Supplemental Appropriation and Loan Order in the amount of $6,007,000 for the purpose of funding the reconstruction of Runway 6-24 Project at the Cape Cod Gateway Airport was referred to a Public Hearing on August 18, 2022.
Town Attorney Karen Nober presented Agenda Item 2023-003 Resolve approving Mark S. Ells’ outside employment with Cape Cod Community College which was approved.
Agenda Items 2023-004 Appointment to a Board/Committee/Commission: Council on Aging: Ellen Queeney, as a regular member to a term expiring 6/2025 and 2023-005 Reappointments to a Board/Committee/Commission: Planning Board: Raymond Sexton, as a regular member to a term expiring 06/2025; Robert Twiss, as a regular member to a term expiring 06/2025; Sandy Neck Board: William Monroe, as a member at large to a term expiring 06/2025; William Carey, as a member at large to a term expiring 6/2025 received First Readings and were referred to Second Readings on August 18, 2022.
Town Manager Ells presented Agenda Item 2023-006 Confirming Reappointments to the Affordable Housing/Growth & Development Trust Fund Board: Michael Andrew Clyburn, to a term expiring June 30, 2023; Mark Milne, to a term expiring June 30, 2024; Wendy Northcross, to a term expiring June 30, 2023; Laura Shufelt, to a term expiring June 30, 2024 which was approved.
Finance Director Mark Milne presented Agenda Item 2023-007 Authorization to expend a grant from Barnstable County in the amount of $1,965,218.61 to fund a portion of the cost of constructing a Pump Station at 725 Main Street Hyannis which was approved.
Director Milne provided the rationale for Agenda Item 2023-008 Order accepting the Provisions of M.G.L. Chapter 59, Section 5N and amending Chapter 183 of the General Ordinances to add a Program for a Veterans Property Tax Work-Off Abatement which was referred to a Public Hearing on August 18, 2022.
Assistant DPW Director Rob Steen presented Agenda Items 2023-009 Authorization to expend a Fiscal Year 2023 MassTrails grant from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the amount of $500,000 for preliminary design of the Cape Cod Rail Trail Phase 4 extension in the Town of Barnstable and 2023-010 Authorization to expend a Fiscal Year 2023 Shared Streets and Spaces grant from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation in the amount of $50,000 to fund the purchase of a sidewalk snow machine which were approved.
Planning & Development Director Elizabeth Jenkins and Senior Planner James Kupfer along with Building Commissioner Brian Florence presented the rationale for Agenda Item 2023-011 Amending the Code of the Town of Barnstable, Part I, General Ordinances, Chapter 240 Zoning, ArticleV Section 46, Home Occupation, and Article III Section 14, RC-1 and RF Residential Districts, Subsection (C) Conditional Uses, to update requirements pertaining to Home Occupations which was referred to the Planning Board.
Agenda Item 2023-012 Appropriation Order in the amount of $62,000 for the purpose of funding the local match requirement for a Federal Grant from the Natural Resource Conservation Service in the amount of $320,000 for the Long Pond Fishway Project as outlined in the Fiscal Year 2023 – Fiscal Year 2027 Capital Improvement Plan and authorization to expend said grant was referred to a Public Hearing on August 18, 2022.
Agenda Item 2023-013 Authorizing the Town Manager to execute a Regulatory Agreement between the Town of Barnstable and S&C Realty Investment Co., LLC for 442 Main Street, Hyannis was referred to a Public Hearing on August 18, 2022.
Agenda Item 2023-014 Appropriation Order for $150,000 for the purpose of funding the local match requirement and the authorization to expend a Federal Grant from the Natural Resource Conservation Service in the amount of $1,529,333 for the Upper Marstons Mills Fishway Project was referred to a Public Hearing on August 18, 2022.
Senior Attorney Charles McLaughlin presented the rationale for Agenda Item 2023-015 Order to Petition the General Court of the Commonwealth to Enact Special Legislation Approving the Grant of Easement to Park City Wind LLC in Certain Parcels of Land, Namely that Portion of Craigville Beach known as Assessors’ Parcel 206-013 and that Portion of 20 South Main Street Known as Assessors’ Parcel 228-138, Superseding Town Council Order 2022-191 which was approved.
Agenda Item 2023-016 Order to approve an Amendment to the Host Community Agreement between the Town of Barnstable and Park City Wind LLC (“HCA 2”) amending the Special Mitigation Provisions received a First Reading and was referred to a Second Reading August 18, 2022.
Agenda Item 2023-017 Resolve authorizing the Town Manager to commence negotiations with Commonwealth Wind LLC for a new Host Community Agreement was withdrawn.
Director Jenkins presented Agenda Item 2023-018 Authorization to expend a Shared Streets and Spaces Grant from The Massachusetts Department of Transportation in the amount of $ $419,739.55 for the implementation of a Placemaking and Transit Parklet Project and traffic calming and pedestrian improvements on Hyannis Main Street which was approved.
Director Milne presented Agenda Item 2023-019 Resolve accepting the provisions of M.G.L. Chapter 59, Section 5, Clause Twenty-Second H to provide a property tax exemption up to the full amount of the taxable valuation for so-called Gold Star Families which was approved.
The Orders of the Day were followed by a Private Road Policy Workshop presented by Town Manager Ells. The next regularly scheduled Town Council Meeting will be held on Thursday, August 18, 2022. The public is able to view through Comcast Channel 18 or Live Streaming on the Town of Barnstable’s website. Real-time public comment may be addressed to the Barnstable Town Council utilizing the Zoom video link or telephone number and access meeting code which will be included on the Agenda. Written Comments may be submitted to: https://tobweb.town.barnstable.ma.us/boardscommittees/towncouncil/Town_Council/Agenda-Comment.asp. The meeting Agenda will be available on the Town of Barnstable’s website (www.townofbarnstable.us).