Village 14: Newton Massachusetts Virtual Village

Should NewCAL be more than a Senior Center?

As we enter the New Year, NewCAL remains high on the Mayor's agenda, with the next community meeting Thursday, January 16, 2020, 7:00PM, at the Newton Ed Center, 100 Walnut Street, Room 111. The meeting's online announcement states: "We look forward to listening and collaborating with members of the community as we move toward finding the best location for NewCAL."...

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Jake offers a hint of things to come

Jake Auchincloss' newsletters remain one of the best ways to learn about the major issues facing the city, particularly when it comes to budgetary matters, and his latest is no exception. In today's email, he raises a concern that has been invisible in the media and in communications from other public officials but will become quite important over the coming years....

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When do you think the Northland referendum should be held?

When do you think the Northland referendum should be held?

The Newton City Council will meet Wednesday night in a special session to either repeal last month’s 17-7 super-majority Northland vote or to set a date for a special election.

While a repeal is unlikely, as City Clerk David Olson explained in a memo last week, the council has essentially three general choices when it comes to scheduling a date:

On March 3 in conjunction with the Super Tuesday presidential primaries (at a cost of approximately $32,917)
Sometime between mid-March and early May (at a cost of approximately $145,902)
At the next municipal election on Nov. 2, 2021 (where presumably it would be part of the regular ballot at no added expense).

Olson’s memo also contains a lot of historical data on voter turnout, suggesting that turnout on March 3 could be 20 to 30 percent points higher than a standalone spring election where Northland is the only item before voters.

As we saw during a brief debate at Monday’s council meeting (go to the 22:24 mark on the video below), this is going to be contentious. There’s also a very good chance that a minority of four councilors will read more

MBTA update on Green Line improvements

The MBTA released the following update this morning on its Green Line Transformation project....   Green Line Transformation Program 2019 Year in Review As we look toward the important improvements that the Green Line Transformation (GLT) program will deliver to our customers in 2020, we want to share all that has been accomplished in 2019 and to thank you for your...

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Accessory apartments – three years later

Three years ago the city passed new regulations to encourage the creation of "accessory apartments".  The city hoped to encourage the creation of additional less expensive housing options and also to help homeowners take care of loved ones or create an additional source of income from their property. At the time the regulations were being considered some folks...

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The annual pilgrimage for a parking permit

The annual pilgrimage for a parking permit

My New Year’s resolution is to keep my cool as I make my annual trip to Newton police traffic bureau - wherever it may be this year – to obtain my $25 parking permit. In this case, I look to Boston as a beacon of administrative simplification and reasonableness – and find you can renew your parking permit online, for free. No needless trip to city hall, no haggling...

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We are the problem

In a thread deep within the comments I was essentially told to leave Newton and move to a place that has more housing. In truth, I live in within the municipal borders of Newton, but my life doesn't stop there. I live in the Greater Boston area. We all do. My neighbors live next door, and they live in Fort Point. They're young, they're old, they're going through...

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