Two separate Town Meeting articles that would halt or add strong controls and limitations to the town’s Central Fire Station project on Farmers Row seem to have been accepted for inclusion on the October 15 warrant, according to Alix Chase of Broadmeadow Road, author of the petitions that move the articles forward.
The draft warrant is to be made available at the September 4 Board of Selectman’s meeting (7:00 p.m. in Town Hall), when the selectmen review the first draft of the document. Also expected to be on the warrant are two or more articles that would move the town forward toward actual construction of the fire station — an article to rezone the fire station parcel to “Public Use” and a second to extend the sewer district to the site parcel. Actual funds for construction may show up as part of a Special Town Meeting in January, 2013 according to Central Fire Station Building Committee minutes.
In a related action, the BoS also has “Update Costs of the Center Fire Station Project” on the meeting agenda.
Chase wrote in an e-mail last week that:
In an exciting development, I have been informed by Town Manager, Mr. Haddad, that both the petitions submitted are eligible for warrant article status. The second petition is written with an intent to rescind, limit, or change the scope of the authority granted to Town Selectmen for purchasing a component of the land owned by the Lawrence Homestead Trust (the beautiful field we all enjoy seeing as we pass on Farmers Row) and using it for any number of purposes including building a new fire station.
We have seen how big the design has gotten and this warrant article would allow us to limit the size of a proposed building or impose other restrictions on the proposed building or even prohibit building on the field if purchased. It allows a lot of options for motions on the floor regarding the authority of Selectmen and the Town.
The first petition is more specific about prohibiting building and protecting the field under conservation guidelines. It does contain more unconventional language but language which is descriptive of the field in question as a value proposition for open space.
I am consulting an attorney about these options however I think its best to submit both at this time so we have the legal effect of the second petition to rescind the vote taken at the last town meeting for which so few residents were present. And its open ended as to motions that may be made whereas the first is more specific with intention to prohibit building on the land.
Feel free to share your thoughts with me and I will keep you all updated of course! There will be a meeting on September 15th of the Selectmen at Town Hall to review the warrant articles submitted.
Thank you again for your support! I also encourage you to share information with your friends and neighbors as well as writing editorials in local media in the hope of raising awareness and motivating support for the article at the time of Town Meeting on October 15th.