The March 7, 2024 Meeting of the Barnstable Town Council was conducted in person. The public was able to attend in person or participate remotely in Public Comment or during a Public Hearing via Zoom. The public was able to view the meeting on Barnstable Government Access Xfinity Channel 8 or 1070 or in High Definition on Xfinity Channel 1072 or via the live stream through the Town website. Town Council President Felicia Penn called the meeting to order and Assistant Town Clerk Janet Murphy took the Roll Call. Town Councilor Matthew Levesque introduced Barnstable resident and Senior Master Sergeant (Retired) Guy Gottschalk to lead the Pledge of Allegiance.  Guy served his country for 37 honorable years which included 4 years of active duty in the US Marine Corps where he participated in various deployments and 33 years in the US Air Force and Air National Guard. He retired in 2021 from the 102nd Intelligence Wing at Otis Air National Guard Base. He now continues his life of service by assisting veterans as a Veterans Service Officer for the Barnstable Veterans’ District.


Following the Moment of Silence, President Penn invited Barnstable Police Chief Jean Challies to the podium to provide a summary of the events that took place in Hyannis on Wednesday. Chief Challies introduced Lt. Michael Riley to the Town Council.  Lt. Riley is the Commander of the Cape Cod Regional SWAT Team and was in charge of the scene on St. Francis Circle. As some background, the incident started out as a domestic disturbance. Initial responding officers were able to get the victim and other occupants out of the house through a window. The situation quickly evolved into a barricade as the subject refused to come out of the house. When SWAT Resources arrived, Lt. Riley took command of the scene. He demonstrated tremendous leadership and patience as he absorbed information from his SWAT Operators on the perimeter, from Team members operating robots that were equipped with cameras, from the negotiators and from the drones overhead. He managed resources not only from the Regional SWAT, but also from the Massachusetts State Police, Barnstable County Sheriff’s Office, and the Metro SWAT Team. He made sure we utilized our Clinician and access her skill set as well. His ability to calmly process the information and make sound decisions while there were shots being fired at his personnel was exemplary. He communicated everything clearly and confidently. Keeping everyone informed. He was the hub of the wheel and he made everything work yesterday. The SWAT Operators and the other officers on the scene were able to do a great job because of his leadership. Chief Challies said that she, didn’t want to overlook that there were a lot of other people who helped out, and she knows that Lt. Riley would be quick to credit them as well. Many of the other officers on the scene who aren’t SWAT Operators left details, court, trainings, or self-deployed from home to respond to this incident. The people behind the scenes at the station deserve credit. The dispatchers were amazing trying to keep calm in the chaos. We had supervisors who stayed behind at the Station to make sure that everything ran smoothly there and that they were still able to maintain the calls that were going on in the remainder of the Town. And the mechanics who got the entire fleet out on the road were phenomenal. There were some cars that probably hadn’t seen the road in a little while.  It was really a team effort and the Community should be proud of the men and women of the BPD as a whole but this incident and the successful outcome were spearheaded by Lt. Riley’s leadership, his patience, his poise. He has a tremendous amount of experience on the SWAT Team. All of those SWAT Operators looked to him to keep calm and he did it. 


Lt. Michael Riley thanked Chief Challies for her comments. He offered that it was a challenging situation and while the Chief said it was Lt. Riley leading the crew, it was incredibly easy to do because we have such a phenomenal police department, such a phenomenal group of people that work on the SWAT Team as well as the other resources, and most importantly the support of the Chief, the support of this Council, the support of the Town, the support of the Town Manager, and the support of people who live in this Town. We feel that every day. And we do appreciate that we get your support. It makes it easy for us to do our job. Thank you for that and, Chief, thank you for tonight. Appreciate it.


Next was Public Comment.  President Penn invited DPW Director Dan Santos the opportunity to respond to the purpose of last week’s Special Town Council meeting which was meant to educate the Town Council and the public about groundwater. Council Response to Public Comment followed.


President Penn announced that Mr. Ells’s Town Manager Communications for the period of February 14-March 5, 2024 had been pre-recorded and was shown on our Government Access Channel prior to the meeting. Mr. Ells was invited to provide a summary of Town Manager Communications. Finance Director Mark Milne was asked by Mr. Ells to further expand on the Cape Cod and Islands Water Protection Fund’s future funding model. The recorded version of Mr. Ells’s Town Manager Communications may be viewed here and the itemized list is shared below:

  1. We are proceeding with the budget action calendar for FY 2025. We have completed the review of the CIP Task Force ranking on capital projects submitted for FY25.  As per the budget action calendar we posted the recommended FY25 Capital Budget to the Town website on Monday, March 4, 2024.  Printed copies of the proposed FY 2025 Capital Budget have been provided to the Town Council Office.  Departments have prepared FY 2025 proposed changes to fiscal years fees and submitted to the Town Manager for a public hearing on Tuesday, March 19, 2024 via Zoom at 11:00 AM.  For information on our fiscal year budgets please view the Town’s Open Budget website at


  1. As previously reported Governor Maura Healey signed an Executive Order creating the Commission on Clean Energy Infrastructure Siting and Permitting(CEISP) in an effort to meet the emissions limits outlined in the Clean Energy and Climate Plans (CECP). Massachusetts will need to site a significant amount of new energy infrastructure, including new solar and wind generation, storage, transmission, and distribution infrastructure. The CEISP is a Commission that is described as one that will bring together stakeholders to swiftly remove barriers to responsible clean energy infrastructure development.  The CEISP will be tasked with reducing permitting timelines, ensuring communities have input in the siting and permitting of clean energy infrastructure, and ensuring that the benefits of the clean energy transition are shared equitably.  The Commission has been instructed to make recommendations on administrative, regulatory, and legislative changes to existing permitting and siting procedures by March 31, 2024.  Barnstable has requested a seat on the Commission (see attached letter), but it does not appear that we shall receive that appointment.  The Commission has held two listening sessions to inform the public about the work they are conducting and to listen to public comments. The link is attached. Barnstable provided comments at the listening session and completed a survey provided by the Commission regarding its task referenced above.  The survey is open for public comment through March 14, 2024.  During the listening session and in the survey, I offered the direct participation by Barnstable with the Commission as Barnstable has first-hand knowledge regarding the siting and permitting of such facilities. Committee members John Mangiaratti, Acton Town Manager and First Vice President, Massachusetts Municipal Association, and Matthew Teague, President, Reef Realty, Ltd, a resident of Barnstable, reached out to me immediately following the meeting regarding Barnstable’s involvement in this process.  I await further communication to determine when that opportunity may occur.  We will keep you advised of our progress on this effort.


  1. In response to requests by the Town Council and the public regarding monitoring the activation of the Vineyard Wind cable landing at Covell’s Beach, I continue discussions with Vineyard Wind and requested regular communication with Barnstable Officials and our public regarding the safe and compliant operation of their system. Vineyard Wind is developing informational signage to be installed at the site to illustrate location and other project information so that those who visit Covell’s Beach may have access to such information.  The informational signage will be installed in spring 2024.  They are preparing a means of public access to information regarding issues of concern such as Electromagnetic Frequency (EMF) as well as other safety compliance aspects so that the public will know that the system is functioning in a safe and compliant manner.  The Town of Barnstable plans to retain an independent third-party expert to verify such safety issues.  We will keep you informed of the progress on this matter.


  1. On January 18, 2024 the Executive Committee of the Cape Cod and Islands Water Protection Fund (CCIWTF) Management Board voted to endorse the strategy for meeting the Fund’s financial needs. Upon further discussion with the State regarding the request the CCIWTF Executive Committee plans to meet on March 6, 2024 to discuss a potential funding approach that may allow the CCIWTF to achieve the targeted 25% principal subsidy level for eligible wastewater projects.  Our Finance Director and Treasurer will attend the meeting with me and share their advice as the CCIWTF Executive Committee considers a modification to the bylaws and revised modeling assumptions. Any modification to the bylaws would require the vote of the CCIWTF Management Board. We will keep you advised of our progress on this matter.


  1. In response to questions regarding tax bills and assessments of property in Barnstable, Lane Patridge, Director of Assessing, has recorded a Town Talk on Residential Property Values. This is the featured video on the Town’s website.  Here is the  Video on Demand link: and the link to YouTube:  We hope this answers many of your questions regarding property assessment in Barnstable.


  1. It is that time of year again when the Barnstable Youth Commission rallies students who are looking for their first jobs and puts them in the same room as businesses that are eager to staff up early for the summer. Now in its 8th year, the Youth Job Fair is bigger than ever and taking place once again at the Hyannis Youth & Community Center (HYCC) on Wednesday, March 6, 2024 from 2:30-4:30 PM. Admission is FREE. Dozens of employers from local and national businesses are expected to participate and they are looking for eager young workers between the ages of 14-18 to hire for both summer and year-round employment. Students can expect to find Youth Commissioners greeting them in the lobby where they can scan a QR code to sign in. Mass-Hire of the Cape & Islands and other organizations will be available to assist students who have questions about the basics of looking for a job, filling out an application, interviewing, understanding the labor laws and the procedure for getting a work permit.  The Gymnasium will be transformed into an Exhibit Hall that contains tables for each business; the ones who are hiring 14/15+ will be situated on one side of the room and 16-18+ on the other side for efficiency. Employers will be ready to offer applications and answer questions. The Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority has a “Plan Your Route” app on their website that students can use to get to the Youth Job Fair and to many of the business locations represented. The League of Women Voters will be on hand to offer information to parents and students who are age 16 and up. For those who cannot attend, information about the participating employers can be found on the Youth Job Board.  Here is the link:


  1. Kate Maldonado, Senior Planner for the Planning & Development Department, provides the following Local Comprehensive Plan Update:
    The Local Comprehensive Planning Committee (LCPC) is continuing efforts to review and produce draft chapters for Land Use, Housing, Natural Resources, and Infrastructure and Facilities. The Committee will hold two meetings during the month of March, Thursday March 14th and Thursday March 28th, at which the LCPC will focus on Infrastructure and Facilities. The next LCP Committee meeting will be held Thursday March 14, 2024 at 5:30 pm in person at Town Hall within the Hearing Room. A presentation will be offered to inform the Committee of current and anticipated Infrastructure and Facilities issues and opportunities and needs as well as regional best practices for initiatives and strategies related to Infrastructure and Facilities. The second meeting in March will continue discussions regarding Infrastructure and Facilities with review of draft policies/goals and strategies. A survey question for the Natural Resources chapter pertaining to prioritization of use for public land is currently live on the LCP project website com. The survey question is available in English, Spanish, and Portuguese and is open through Sunday March 31st. The LCP Committee will dedicate the month of April to outreach to present draft chapters for Land Use, Housing, Natural Resources, and Infrastructure and Facilities seeking community feedback with a meeting scheduled in each of the Town’s villages. Each of the community meetings will be defined on the LCP project website via the Calendar tab as well as the Town’s calendar.  To learn more about this important process and to stay up to date on meetings and community events please visit the project website:


Mr. Ells answered additional questions from the Council.


The Council voted to approve Public Session Minutes:  February 15, 2024.


Next was Communications from elected officials, boards, committees, and staff, commission reports, correspondence and announcements.


President’s Notes from the Wheelhouse

  • A number of positive comments about how educational last week’s Special Town Council Meeting was. Of particular note was hearing from the Water Districts and that they were all in the room together. There will be subsequent workshops focusing on wastewater, surface and coastal resources, and PFAS and other contaminants. In the process of identifying subject matter experts on dielectric fluids, gases, and safety. Going to either add that to the PFAS workshop or carve out another date on substations only. The next Workshop is scheduled for Thursday, April 11, 2024. Same rules apply and no public will be admitted because of the capacity of the Hearing Room. Please submit your questions (no statements) in advance by email to by noon on Wednesday, April 10th. You can watch the Workshop on Xfinity Channel 8 or Xfinity HD 1072 or live stream on the Town’s website (
  • Later this evening, the Town Council will hopefully vote to establish five subcommittees. Three of the five subcommittees are to include members of the public as working/voting members. Councilors should submit their names for the committees they are interested in serving on to Cynthia Lovell by March 28th. Members of the public interested in serving on a subcommittee should complete the application on the Town Council webpage (hopefully online by Monday, March 11th). Members of the public should also submit their application by March 28th. All subcommittees will be compliant with Open Meeting Law.
  • Even though we have heard many thanks to the Chief and BPD for their execution of what could have been a very dangerous and deadly event, I wish also to applaud their professionalism in carrying out an operation that resulted in an outstanding outcome – no deaths. Hope that the passage of time heals all in the neighborhood and elsewhere.


Orders of the Day.



President Penn took AGENDA ITEM 2024-099 out of order.


AGENDA ITEM 2024-099 Amending the Code of the Town of Barnstable, Part I General Ordinances, Chapter 1 General Provisions, Article I Noncriminal Enforcement of Violations. Councilor Charlie Bloom recognized Senior Animal Control Officer Charlie Lewis and his contributions to the Town of Barnstable.

Presented by Shellfish Constable/Senior Natural Resource Officer Amy Croteau and Director of Natural Resources Nina Coleman. Senior Animal Control Officer Charlie Lewis was also present. The item was approved.


AGENDA ITEM 2024-093 Appropriation and Loan Order in the amount of $30,900,000 for the purpose of funding sewer infrastructure improvements.

Presented by DPW Director Dan Santos.  The item was approved.


AGENDA ITEM 2024-096 Appropriation Order in the amount of $500,000 to fund disposal costs of the Solid Waste Division of the Department of Public Works.

Presented by DPW Director Dan Santos.  The item was approved.


AGENDA ITEM 2024-161 Supplemental Appropriation Order for Fiscal Year 2024 Barnstable Police Department in the amount of $35,000 to fund consulting services and overtime costs for the purpose of exploring the removal of the Barnstable Police Department from Civil Service.

Presented by Human Resources Director Bill Cole.  The item was approved.



AGENDA ITEM 2024-166 Resolve establishing certain Ad Hoc Advisory Committees.

Presented by Town Attorney Karen Nober.  Councilor Paul Neary made a Motion to postpone to date certain of April 4, 2024. The Motion was seconded. Councilor Schnepp offered an amendment to the motion to a date certain of March 21, 2024. The motion was seconded and approved. The amended motion was approved.


The Orders of the Day were followed by a WORKSHOP DISCUSSION – Private Roads – Mark S. Ells, Town Manager.  Finance Director Mark Milne answered the Councilors’ financial questions. Mr. Ells’s PowerPoint presentation may be viewed here.


The next regularly scheduled Town Council Meeting will be held on Thursday, March 21, 2024. The public is able to view through Xfinity High Definition Channel 1072 (or Xfinity Channel 8 or 1070) 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:  The meeting Agenda will be available on the Town of Barnstable’s website (