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Open Invitation to All Tewksbury Residents!

Postby bferrari on Mon Nov 11, 2002 11:25 am

I went into the meeting wondering how the Master Plan would be enforced once we had a completed one. I left the meeting reassured that the courts are now "upholding" local board decisions when the developers turn around and sue the towns to get what they want.

"The courts get it now." The courts will uphold decisions that are based around the Master Plan, but of course you need to actually have one to uphold it and that is what we are striving for.

So my biggest fear was alleviated! Thank you to all who were positively involved!
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Postby swamper on Tue Nov 12, 2002 1:32 am

Congrats to all involved for the "very successful" IMO, Master Plan visioning session on Saturday. Thanks to the organization and dedication on the part of the committee & co. and ultimately the enthusiastic participation by the concerned residents in attendance, I think "most" left the mtg. with "some" sense of hope for the future of our town. Let's try to keep the positive momentum going by more pro-active participation in matters such as these. The rest of the MP meetings as has been stated are ALSO open to the public and attendance is encouraged. The next follow-up meeting is scheduled for THIS Thurs. Nov. 14th from 7pm to 9pm at the police station mtg. room where the evaluations of the visioning forums will be discussed. ALL ARE WELCOME! The future MP mtgs. schedule is posted both on this website (under the "Major Kudos" topic on this TCPG forum) AND at the town's tewksbury info site as well. Print copies are also available at Steve Sadwick's office at Community Development. Just as an FYI, Mr. Cressman was in attendance at the FIRST visioning session held on 10/24. [img]images/smiles/icon_wink.gif[/img]
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Postby dan_mazik on Tue Nov 12, 2002 4:18 pm

Having attended the second “Visioning Sessionâ€￾ and from speaking to someone who was at the first one, it seems that there was a pretty good representation of the various town boards and committees as well as citizens’ groups in attendance. For what it’s worth, here is who attended at least one of the meetings:

Town Manager David Cressman, Selectman Joe Gill (who is also on the Master Plan Committee), Tara Coakley from Rep. Jim Miceli’s office, and Rep. Barry Feingold. Also, representatives from the following ‘official’ town boards/committees as well as ‘grass-roots’ citizens’ groups: Land Use Committee, Historical Commission, Sidewalk Committee, Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Zoning Board of Appeals, Affordable Housing Committee, Recycling Committee, Tewksbury Citizens for Planned Growth (TCPG), TEwksbury Advocates for the CHildren (TEACH), and the Ames Pond Neighborhood Association (APNA). I hope I didn't miss anyone.

I do think that it is somewhat odd that other than Mr. Gill, none of the other selectmen attended either of these two meetings. Perhaps he is keeping the others ‘in the loop’ by giving them regular updates. (?)

Also, it appears that NONE of the School Committee members attended either meeting. Now THAT I find very strange! [img]images/smiles/icon_confused.gif[/img]
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Postby Sunny Beach on Thu Nov 14, 2002 12:01 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by bferrari:
Especially exciting was Warren Carey (former town treasurer) being escorted out of the room...! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

So as not to shine a bad light on the forum, which in my opinion was well worth my time and effort, I'd like to set the record straight about your comments re Mr. Carey. Please note that I do not think that Mr. Carey needs defending. It is just that your comments are out of context and are misleading to those who were not there. We are spending 81K on this Master Plan, 50k of our own money, and my concern is that comments like these may do more harm then good.

Since your comments may lead people to think that Mr. Carey was told to leave the meeting, that is not the case. Mr. Carey was taken out of the room by the consultant, spoken to about the purpose of the forum, and he returned to the meeting and participated until the end. The reason this occured was because the purpose of the forum was to bring up issues/concerns, NOT to debate them, or tell people why things are as they are, which is what Mr. Carey was trying to do, even after being "warned" by the consultants twice. As a result, the consultant was losing control of the meeting, and the attendees were getting off track as to why and how they were supposed to participate.

The forum was intended to allow people to speak their mind re what is good and bad about our town. It was not a forum to inform people why things are as they are, or a forum for finding a way to fix the problems. And in my opinion, who said what, and what happened at the meeting is not important. It is the data that was collected during those forums which is important.
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Postby dougsears on Thu Nov 14, 2002 2:20 pm

Dan:

The way the Board of Selectmen works is for it to designate a representative to the various committees. Joe Gill is our representative to the Master Plan Committee. He reports to the Selectmen on its meetings.

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Postby dan_mazik on Thu Nov 14, 2002 2:36 pm

Thanks, Doug. Like I said, I did think it was odd, but I DID add the comment that maybe Gill was keeping the rest of you "in the loop". Thanks for clarifying that.
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Postby Ed A on Thu Nov 14, 2002 4:01 pm

Mr.Sears, thank-you for providing the insight into the workings of the Board of Selectmen as a response to Dan.

Dan's post also questioned School Committee participation. To date, no School Committee member has replied in a manner as you did for the Selectmen.

As a former School Committee member, are you able to similarly enlighten us on how, during your tenure there, town-wide issues, such as the Master Plan, were addressed?

Thanks...
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Postby dougsears on Thu Nov 14, 2002 8:41 pm

Ed A:

The School Committee, in my experience, has had the attitude of "we will try to provide the best education for kids with whatever cards we are dealt."

There is enough difficulty getting from one budget to another, from one collective bargaining agreement to the next, that there is not much, if any, time spent taking in the long view.

I am not sure that there is a school committee person assigned to the master plan committee, but I tend to doubt it as there are so many subcommittees within the school committee that I can't realistically see anyone of its members looking forward to serving on some outside committee.
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Postby Ed A on Thu Nov 14, 2002 9:35 pm

Thanks for the reply.

I'm not unsympathetic to the School Committee. I'm sure that they're beleagured with a seemingly endless list of issues and emergencies.

I just saw this as a possible opportunity to get ahead of an issue or two rather than to have to play the cards that they're dealt, as you put it.
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Postby kakd on Sun Mar 28, 2004 3:37 pm

JimH, I couldn't agree more. I would like to point out the the town consultant, who also worked on developing the Master Plan, said that the mall or any other large scale retail center could jeopardize the town center plan.
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Postby birddog on Sun Mar 28, 2004 7:08 pm

How about Wakefield? They have a very nice down town area!
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Postby John O on Sun Mar 28, 2004 8:12 pm

I'm originally from Wakefield. I miss having a town center like that.
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Postby birddog on Sun Mar 28, 2004 8:19 pm

That's where I'm from, I grew up right at the end of the lake, across from the bandstand! The downtown looks even better today than it did when I lived there 20 years ago!
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Postby swamper on Sun Mar 28, 2004 8:47 pm

Having participated in both Resident Visioning Sessions in conjunction with the Master Plan as well as most of the subsequent Master Plan meetings themselves... I can assure EVERYONE that THIS was one of the RECURRING themes expressed over and over again by the RESIDENTS of this town...the desire for a village concept Town Center. Now granted we realized that wasn't going to happen OVERNIGHT and wouldn't be realized for several years but it WAS an attainable goal to WORK TOWARD for our Town and its residents' future. The concept of building a mall or ANY large box retail flies in the face of being consistent with the goals of our Master Plan. This has been repeated at numerous meetings by "us" as well as our Master Plan consultant Judi Barrett at one of the so-called Mills Study committee meetings where she made her excellent power point presentation. Of course Mr. O'Neill tried to refute that with his usual tactics of twisted verbage... but the bottom line remains...a MALL is inconsistent and Ms. Barrett held her ground. This was the same O'Neill when asked that very same question re. a town center concept being thwarted by this mall proposal at the Mill's "friends of Tewksbury Schools" forum at the Tewksbury Country Club, who retorted back arrogantly with... "Well we DON'T have one NOW do we?" No, we DON'T Mr. O'Neill...and if that mall monstrosity goes in we most likely NEVER WILL! But what the heck...only the RESIDENTS want that and who are we to question? [img]images/smiles/icon_rolleyes.gif[/img]
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Postby JimH on Mon Mar 29, 2004 1:37 am

About building up a "downtown" area. I think this would be great for the town. A perfect example to follow is Andover. They have about 20 or so shops in a small area, but nothing ugly or obtrusive. Kids go and hang around or grab something to eat after school is over before walking home or getting rides. Many towns have this, and most work well, as long as don't get too "Revere-like".
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