Selectman Voas praises Senior Center Director Stacy Barr
One day after Oxford’s Town Elections, Oxford’s Board of Selectmen reorganized, appointing John Saad, Chairman; Dennis Lamarche, Vice-Chairman; and Michael Voas, Secretary. After his unanimous appointment, Mr. Saad expressed his gratitude and appreciation to former Chairwoman Jen Caissie and also praised her professionalism and accomplishments of the past year. Mr. Lamarche then thanked the Oxford voters for returning him to office and also acknowledged his fellow Board members.
Up first on the agenda was a public hearing on the new sewer rates, presented by Sean Divoll, DPW Director. Mr. Divoll stated that he “hadn’t come before the Board for over two years regarding sewer rate increases and since then costs to run and maintain the system have risen.”
He mentioned that the Town of Auburn’s Intermunicipal Agreement with Oxford concerning the waste collected and pumped through Auburn to be treated at the Upper Blackstone Plant had increased fees by 12% and Millbury had increased fees by 6%. The North Oxford Thayer Pond pumping station was recently rebuilt and has been operating since 1986. The cost to finance that debt will soon be hitting the sewer enterprise account.
Mr. Divoll further mentioned that “the customer fees only go into the enterprise fund and that no tax dollars were used to finance the rebuilding, therefore, user rates do have to be increased.” Additionally, it was noted that the sewer rates from the Town of Webster were considerably higher for the Old Webster Road area due to lesser flow to the Webster plant and higher costs associated with treating a smaller waste flow.
The legality of the two different rate structures was reviewed by Town Counsel, Kopelman and Paige, and it was determined that “cost differentiations can be easily demonstrated between the North Oxford and the Old Webster Road systems in that there are two distinct and different service areas with clear cost differences.”
Consequently, the Board voted new sewer rates as follows: $10.40/per thousand gallon usage to all North Oxford System users and $16.70/per thousand gallon usage to all Old Webster Road users. Old rates for North Oxford were $8.70/thousand gallons and the new average cost to a single-family home would be $99 annually. Rate changes will be effective July 1, 2012.
DPW Director Divoll also updated the Board on the new Federal Reflectivity Sign Policy. He stated that there were well over 2,000 various street signs in the Town of Oxford, 1,045 of them had been inventoried and GPS’d, and work was still ongoing with the inventory process.
Mr. Divoll further stated that he was pleased to report that the Town’s 10 missing catch-basin grates had been recovered with the help of the Worcester Police Dept. Each grate weighs about 150 lbs. and had been stolen by local thieves with the intent of selling the grates to a metal scrap dealer for cash.
Annual appointments were then reviewed and voted in as follows: Representative to the Worcester Regional Transit Authority – Town Mgr., Joseph Zeneski; Administrative Asst. to Board of Selectman – Karen Crandell; Zoning Board of Appeals – Regular members: Arthur Boulay, Michael LeDuc, Peter LaFlash, Mark Mercadante, John Sneade; Associate members: Stephen Balcunas, Michael Camosse, and Alfred St. Germain; Board of Registrars – Theresa Laramee, Carol Graves, and John Flattery; Civil Defense Police Officers – Albert Adams, Richard Kneeland, and John O’Keefe; Civil Defense Police Officers (restricted to recreation duties) – Gary Belvery, Sr., Leon Cahill, and Ronald Fisher, Sr.; Constable Appointments – Albert Adams, Robert Charbonneau, Richard Kneeland, Ralph Miller, Michael Plante, Franklin Saad, Brian Boulette, Alan Jeskey, and Stephen Lapomardo; Downtown Beautification Committee – Alfred & Carolyn Banfill, Kathleen Bowles, Kimberly Denn, Joel Masley, Olive Prunier, John Reckner, and George & Dorothy Starkus; Open Space Committee member – Jane Stafford (secretary); and Police Matrons – Johnna Cox, Karen Mahota, Rebecca Prefontaine, Joann Somers, Debra Light, and Amanda Stone.
The Hannah Harwood Scholarship Fund candidates were then voted on with no names given out to the press or public. The successful high school graduate will be notified on scholarship night before graduation on Friday.
During the course of Town Manager Zeneski’s regular report, it was noted that Jane Bania, Chairwoman, and Martin Bania, Treasurer, of the Oxford Republican Town Committee, had submitted their resignations.
The Board also voted unanimously to sign the Intermunicipal Sewer Agreement between Oxford and Webster, set the next 6-month schedule for their meetings, signed a proclamation declaring May 20-26 National Public Works Week, and announced the Board’s invitation to the OHS 2012 Commencement Exercises to be held on Friday, May 25.
Selectman Michael Voas reviewed his attendance at the Annual Volunteers’ Brunch held at the Oxford Senior Center on Saturday, April 28. Mr. Voas praised the Senior Center Director, Stacy Barr, for her efforts and tireless work assisting the Town’s senior population. He also saluted the extraordinary efforts of all the Senior Center’s volunteers who have saved the Town over $150,000 through their countless hours of selfless generosity as well as their outstanding efforts while at the Senior Center from helping with Meals-on-Wheels to all group activities.
- Tuesday, 22 May 2012
- Posted in Categories: : Selectmen