Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Just In: Vaccinations Available This Saturday In Southie


COVID-19 vaccinations will be available this Saturday, April 24th from 9 am to 5 pm at the Iron Workers Local 7 Union located at 195 Old Colony Avenue. Schedule your appointment. Please note that all appointments are for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

Boston City Council Looks At Budget, Housing, Transportation, Art & CPA Grants Plus More

City Councilor-At-Large Michelle Wu publishes notes from Boston City Council meetings. Below are some highlights from March 31, April 14 and April 7, 2021 Boston City Council meetings: 

COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE MAYOR

FY2022 Annual Appropriation and Tax Order: The Council received the proposed Fiscal Year 2022 Recommended Budget for the City of Boston, including $3.75 billion for the Operating Budget and $3.2 billion for the FY22-26 Capital Plan. Over the coming weeks, the City Council will hold a series of hearings to discuss the proposed budget before holding a vote to approve or reject it. (Placed on file)

FY2022 Annual Appropriation for the School Department: The Council received the proposed Fiscal Year 2022 budget for Boston Public Schools of $1.29 billion. This budget will be supplemented by federal COVID-19 recovery funding through The Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds and the American Rescue Plan. This budget has already been approved by a vote in the Boston School Committee. Over the coming weeks, the City Council will hold a series of hearings to discuss the proposed school budget before holding a vote to approve or reject it. (Placed on file)

Environment Conservation Commission Revolving Fund: The Council received an order authorizing up to $50,000 for the purpose of securing outside consultants to aid in the review of proposed projects to the Commission protecting local wetland and promoting climate change adaptation, to be credited with receipts from fees imposed by the Commission. (Placed on file)

Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture Revolving Fund: The Council received an order authorizing up to $120,000 to purchase goods and services to support public art, to be credited with receipts for easements within the public way granted by the Public Improvement Commission; and up to $30,000 to purchase goods and services to support the operation of the Strand Theatre, to be credited with receipts from rental fees. (Placed on file)

NEW FILES

Short Term Rentals Ordinance: Councilors Flynn, Bok and Edwards called for a hearing to discuss updates on the status and enforcement of the Short Term Rentals Ordinance. In 2018, I introduced the original Short Term Rentals ordinance language in partnership with Councilor Edwards, which mandates that only units that are owner-occupied are eligible to be short-term rentals and requires that operators register their units, apply for a license annually, and notify their abutters. However, advocates and civic organizations have expressed concerns that corporate actors are exploiting a loophole in the ordinance to convert their rentals into executive suites, which are exempt from the ordinance, and that these conversations are being approved by the Zoning Board of Appeals. This matter was assigned to the Committee on Housing & Community Development.

MATTERS RECENTLY HEARD

Housing and Community Development Grants: Councilor Edwards reported back as Chair of the Committee on Housing and Community Development regarding several grants from the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development, to be administered by the Department of Neighborhood Development, to fund community and economic development programs, the creation of affordable housing units by nonprofits and for-profit developers, rental assistance and services for persons with HIV/AIDS, housing stability and homelessness prevention, and services and housing to the homeless. (Passed all five dockets)

Zoning Relief for Affordable Housing: I reported back as Chair of the Committee on Planning, Development and Transportation regarding a hearing recently held to discuss zoning relief for 100% affordable and deeply affordable housing projects. At the hearing, we heard from representatives from the BPDA and DND about potential tools for zoning relief, including easing requirements for parking, open space, and setbacks; density bonuses that would allow increased height and scale in exchange for affordability; and an expedited review process and waived fees. (Remains in Committee)

Inclusionary Development Policy: Councilor Edwards reported back as Chair of the Committee on Housing and Community Development on a hearing recently held to discuss the state of affordable housing and Boston’s Inclusionary Development Policy (IDP). The current IDP requires housing developments with 10 or more units to place income restrictions on 13% of units to ensure affordability, but these income restrictions are based on an Area Median Income (AMI) that does not reflect actual household incomes in the City of Boston. At the hearing, we heard from advocates calling for a change to IDP to increase the proportion of affordable units, enact specific protections for lower income residents, require permanent affordability, and lower the unit threshold to trigger IDP, among other proposals. (Remains in Committee)

GRANTS AND APPROPRIATIONS

  • $8,600,000 in the form of an appropriation from the City’s Capital Grant Fund, transferred from the Parking Meter Fund, to fund various transportation and public realm improvements aligned with the goals of Go Boston 2030. (Placed on file)

  • $2,000,000 in the form of an appropriation from the City’s Capital Grant Fund, transferred from revenue received from the Commonwealth Transportation Infrastructure Enhancement Trust Fund, to address the impact of transportation network services on municipal roads, bridges and other transportation infrastructure. (Placed on file)

  • $2,051,903 in the form of a grant for the Boston Cultural Fund, awarded by the Boston Redevelopment Authority to be administered by the Office of Arts and Culture, to fund cultural spaces, organizations, programs, artists and activities in the South End, with the goal of preserving and enhancing cultural activity. (Assigned to the Committee on Arts, Culture and Special Events)

  • $25,500,374 in the form of a Community Preservation Act appropriation order for the Fiscal Year 2021 Preservation Fund revenues for community preservation projects at the recommendations of the City of Boston Community Preservation Committee (Passed)

  • $38,685,686 in the form of the Federal Fiscal Year 2020 Continuum of Care grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, to support programs that provide services and housing to the homeless (Referred to the Committee on Housing and Community Development)

UPCOMING HEARINGS (Streaming online at https://boston.gov/departments/city-council/watch-boston-city-council-tv

  • Next City Council meeting will be on Wednesday, April 28st at 12PM. 

  • Wednesday, April 21st at 1PM: Hearing on off-leash dog recreation spaces in the City of Boston (Committee on City & Neighborhood Services)

  • Thursday, April 22nd at 9:30AM: Hearing on an ordinance on surveillance oversight and accountability (Committee on Government Operations)

  • Thursday, April 22nd at 2PM: Hearing on expanding access for minority business (Committee on Small Business & Workforce Development)

  • Monday, April 26th at 10AM: Hearing on the FY22 budget (Committee on Ways & Means)

  • Monday, April 26th at 4PM: Community working session on the FY22 budget – Administration and Finance overview (Committee on Ways & Means)

  • Tuesday, April 27th at 10AM: Hearing on the FY22 budget – Boston Public Schools overview (Committee on Ways & Means)

  • Tuesday, April 27th at 2PM: Hearing on the FY22 budget - BPS school budgets (Committee on Ways & Means)

  • Wednesday, April 28th at 5PM: Hearing on the FY22 budget – public testimony priorities for an equitable recovery (Committee on Ways & Means)

For complete notes of Boston City Council meetings, visit MichelleForBoston.com to sign up to receive Council Notes automatically.

Monday, April 12, 2021

MCCA Considering Seaport East Boston Ferry Service

The Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA), which oversees the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center (BCEC), currently runs a ferry service between the South Boston Seaport and North Station on behalf of a group of participating companies who fund the service. 

This privately funded service serves both corporate and public commuters on a Monday through Friday schedule. The MCAA is evaluating a potential expansion of the service, and is using the results of this survey to gauge interest of both companies and individuals on a service connecting East Boston to the South Boston Seaport.  

You may have received a mailer with the above text and QR code to the survey.  To complete the survey, you may also click on this survey link


Saturday, April 10, 2021

Gear Up Kids: Bike Raffle, Repair & Fun Day

On Tuesday, April 20, 2021 from 11 am to 2 pm, the C-6 Community Service Office will be partnering with the Condon Community Center to run a "Bike Repair & Fun Day" for children ages 7-12. This event takes place during school vacation week and will take place in the newly renovated park area behind the Condon. 

Don't miss it. They will be raffling off several new bikes and other prizes. If you have a bike, there will be bike tune ups, an obstacle course and ride, helmet giveaway and Otto pizza lunch, cookies, and music.

Covid-19 safety procedures will be followed and masks/PPE will be provided.

Thursday, April 08, 2021

Fort Point Landmarks April 2021 Meeting

04/08/21: updated with links to presentations. 

The FORT POINT CHANNEL LANDMARK DISTRICT COMMISSION will hold a public hearing on:

Thursday, April 8, 2021
6:00 PM

This hearing will be held virtually and NOT in person. 
You can participate in this hearing by going to our Zoom meeting link 
or by calling 929-205-6099 and entering meeting id 861 8552 9275 #
You can also submit written comments or questions to FortPointLDC@boston.gov 


I.  Violations

APP # 21.0754 FPC   253 Summer Street
Applicant: COJE Management Group
Proposed Work: Ratify a patio expansion, including the installation of pavers, planters, lighting, furniture, and associated landscaping (Violation # VIO.21.009).

II DESIGN REVIEW HEARING

APP # 21.0709 FPC  33/41 Farnsworth Street
Applicant: Matthew S. Wessling
Proposed Work: Remove select deteriorated fire shutter pins. At areas where fire shutter pins have previously been removed, install new brick. See additional items under Administrative Review.

III Administrative Review

APP # 21.0709 FPC          33/41 Farnsworth Street 
At all facades, restore mortar joints using mortar that matches the historic mortar joints in terms of color, texture, joint width, tooling, and profile; selectively replace deteriorated brick as needed with new brick to match the historic in terms of color, texture, size, and profile; remove copper cornice/ flashing and replace with new copper; replace window sealant joints. Paint and/ or recoat previously coated metal/steel and concrete. See additional items under Design Review.

APP # 21.0755 FPC          51 Melcher Street: At the areas of the Melcher Street, Necco Court, and courtyard facades, replaced window perimeter sealant in kind, perform masonry spot pointing with new mortar to match historic in terms of color, texture, profile, joint width, and tooling, perform stone sill patching with mortar to match the historic in terms of color, texture and profile, and selective brick replacement with new brick to match historic in terms of color, texture, size, and profile.

IV Ratification of 3/11/2021 FPCLDC Public Hearing Minutes

V Staff Updates

VI Projected Adjournment 7:00 pm

FORT POINT CHANNEL LANDMARK DISTRICT COMMISSION
David Berarducci, Susan Goganian, John Karoff, Lynn Smiledge, Vacancy
Alternates: Thomas Rodde, Vacancy

originally published 3.31.21

Monday, March 29, 2021

FPNA March Neighborhood Meeting: Taking It To The Streets

You are invited to a virtual
Fort Point Seaport
Neighborhood Gathering



Tuesday, March 30, 2021
6 pm to 8 pm
Zoom Sign In


featuring

Our C-6 Community Service Officers

former Rockland Trust Bank Pavilion 
290 Northern Avenue
requesting support for All Liquor License


Nautilus Pier 4
300 Pier 4
requesting support for outdoor entertainment license
including live music & DJ


Taking It To The Streets
Sleeper St & Congress St Improvements
Pat Hoey, Neighborhood Planning Director, Boston Transportation Dept.
Zach Wassmouth, Chief Design Engineer, Boston Public Works Dept.




Mayoral Candidate Spotlight
District 4 Boston City Councilor Andrea Campbell


with
Neighborhood Open Discussion & Updates
Cannabis Shop (Blue Dragon), Development, Committees, Love Your Block 

We invite you to renew your membership or become an FPNA member for the first time. An individual membership is $35 and a family membership is $50. You can pay by check or via venmo @FPNA-Boston.  Join FPNA today!
Upcoming Happenings

Monday, March 29: 5:30 pm - 7 pm Amendment of Groundwater Trust Overlay District to extend protection to groundwater levels in areas of the city with older buildings on wooden piles built on filled land. This includes us and parts of East Boston, Downtown Waterfront, Roxbury/South End, and Audubon Circle.

Tuesday, March 30: FPNA Neighborhood Gathering 6pm - 8pm. Details above. Monday, April 5:

Wednesday, March 31: 6 pm - 7:30 pm  Amhreins (80 West Broadway) Public Meeting for a proposed mixed use lab/research building with ground floor retail and retention of 4 story building. 

Monday, April 5: 6 pm - 7:30 pm: 24 Drydock Avenue Impact Advisory Group Meeting for proposed demolition of a 3 story building for an 8 story mixed used building of Life Sciences, marine industrial and supportive uses in the Raymond Flynn Marine Park. Public is welcome to attend. 

Wednesday, April 14: 1 pm Boston Cannabis Board Hearing for recreational pot shop at 324 A Street (Blue Dragon site) by operator Keltic Green.


Street Sweeping
Starting April 1st, overnight street cleaning from 12:01 to 7am on Congress St (Dorchester Ave to E. Service) and on Sleeper St.
Starting Tuesday, April 6 street sweeping on A Street and Binford Street from 9 am - 1 pm.
Click here to learn more and to sign up for alerts

Neighborhood updates, questions or concerns, please contact FPNA

originally posted 03.24.21

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Boston City Council Looks At Vaccines, Separation of Powers, Preliminary Election & More

City Councilor-At-Large Michelle Wu publishes notes from Boston City Council meetings. Below are some highlights from March 24, 2021 Boston City Council meeting: 

VOTES

Vaccine Access for Domestic and Essential Workers: The Council voted unanimously to adopt a resolution from Councilors Edwards and Breadon in support of all domestic workers and essential workers in need of immediate Covid-19 vaccine access.

Separation of Powers: The Council voted to adopt amendments to the Council rules filed by Councilor Bok to add a Rule #51 to codify the separation of powers in the event of a mayoral vacancy. 

NEW FILES

Resignation of Mayor Martin J. Walsh: The Council accepted the letter of resignation from Mayor Martin J. Walsh, effective March 22, 2021 at 9PM, given his confirmation as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor. (Placed on file)

Communication from City Council President Kim Janey: The Council accepted the letter from Mayor Kim Janey regarding her transition to her new role as acting Mayor of the City of Boston. (Placed on file)

Preliminary Election: The Mayor introduced an Order to change the date of the preliminary election from September 21, 2021 to September 14, 2021, to enable enough time to certify election results before the general election on November 3, 2021, given a potential expansion of vote by mail. This matter was referred to the Committee on Government Operations.

UPCOMING HEARINGS (Streaming online at https://boston.gov/departments/city-council/watch-boston-city-council-tv

  • Our next City Council meeting will be on Wednesday, March 31th at 12PM.

  • Thursday, March 25 at 10AM: Working session regarding an ordinance to establish guidelines for permitting retail residential kitchens and a text amendment for the Boston Zoning Code to add retail residential kitchens as an accessory home occupation (Committee on Small Business and Workforce Development)

  • Thursday, March 25 at 1PM: Hearing regarding an $80,000 grant for the FY21 Sustainable Materials Recovery Program/Recycling Dividends (Committee on City and Neighborhood Services)

  • Thursday, March 25 at 5PM: Hearing regarding appropriations recommended by the City of Boston Community Preservation Committee for community preservation projects (Community Preservation Committee)

  • Friday, March 26 at 9:30AM: Hearing regarding green and social bonds (Committee on Post Audit and Oversight)

  • Monday, March 29 at 10AM: Hearing regarding an ordinance requiring equitable COVID-19 vaccine distribution and an ordinance extending paid sick leave for COB employees to receive the COVID-19 vaccine (Committee on Government Operations)

  • Monday, March 29 at 1PM: Hearing regarding a petition from A Yankee Line for a license to operate motor vehicles for the carriage of passengers for hire (Committee on City and Neighborhood Services)  

  • Tuesday, March 30 at 9AM: Hearing regarding zoning relief for 100% affordable and deeply affordable projects (Committee on Planning, Development and Transportation)

  • Tuesday, March 30 at 1PM: Hearing to discuss ways for the City to prevent and investigate instances of hate crimes and discirmination (Committee on Civil Rights)

  • Tuesday, March 30 at 4PM: Hearing regarding the state of affordable housing as to Boston's Inclusionary Development Policy (Committee on Housing and Community Development)

For complete notes of Boston City Council meetings, visit MichelleForBoston.com to sign up to receive Council Notes automatically.

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Street Sweeping & Ticketing Enforcement

STREET SWEEPING, TICKETING ENFORCEMENT FOR EXPIRED INSPECTION STICKERS AND VEHICLE REGISTRATION TO RESUME

  • Street cleaning resumes each spring starting in April and continuing through November. Be in the know. Don't get ticketed or towed.
  • Street sweeping ticketing enforcement will also resume and vehicles in violation will be subject to towing. In case you missed it, the Boston Transportation Department resumed ticketing ($40) enforcement for expired inspection stickers and vehicle registration. Mayor Walsh had paused enforcement of certain violations at the beginning of the pandemic in an effort to ensure residents could minimize their need to go out to slow the spread of COVID-19.
  • Failure to move a vehicle during posted street sweeping hours results in a $40 fine which increases to $90 for overnight street sweeping.  View a complete list of parking codes and fines in the City of Boston. With the addition of more bike lanes around the City, be aware that it is a $100 fine to park in a bike lane. To learn more about the daytime and nighttime street sweeping program, including when the Public Works Department cleans a particular neighborhood, you can sign up for street sweeping alerts and No-Tow reminder service online.

  • As a reminder, residents with resident parking permits will continue to be allowed to park at meters within their neighborhood without having to abide by the time limits or pay the meter.

  • The Boston Transportation Department will continue to evaluate additional parking enforcement changes throughout the phased reopening. For more information, visit boston.gov/transportation

Boston City Council Looks At Democratic Public Meetings, Digital Infrastructure, Sidewalks, Recovery & More

City Councilor-At-Large Michelle Wu publishes notes from Boston City Council meetings. Below are a few highlights from March 17, 2021 Boston City Council meeting: 

VOTES

Medication Assisted Recovery and Care: The Council voted to pass a resolution from Councilor Edwards in support of SD.1709, An Act Relative to Medication Assisted Recovery and Care, which will address the systemic barriers faced by those on medication assisted recovery.

Striking Nurses at St. Vincent’s Hospital: The Council voted to pass a resolution from Councilors Edwards and Flynn in support of the striking nurses at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Worcester, Massachusetts, who are advocating for safe staffing ratios and additional support staff to protect their patients’ health.

Structure of the Fiscal Management and Control Board: The Council voted to pass a resolution from Councilors Flynn and Bok in support of SD.1313, An Act Relative to the Structure of the Fiscal Management and Control Board. This bill would expand the FMCB to 7 members, including one member to be appointed by the Mayor of Boston

NEW FILES

Divestment of the City Treasury: Councilors Edwards, O’Malley and I filed an ordinance relative to the investments of the City Treasury, which would prohibit local investments in tobacco companies, fossil fuel companies, or companies related to the operation of private prisons. Massachusetts was the first state to divest from South Africa in 1982 and the first to divest all state pension funds from tobacco companies in 1997. This is an opportunity to build on that legacy by refusing to fund dangerous, predatory companies that compromise the wellbeing of the next generation. This matter was referred to the Committee on Government Operations. 

Access to Local Democracy: Councilors Edwards, Breadon and Mejia filed an ordinance expanding access to local democracy in the City of Boston. As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, municipalities have enabled remote participation in and access to open meetings, meaningfully increasing Boston residents’ engagement in local democracy. This legislation would establish provisions for a permanent remote participation option for all public body meetings, with technology accessible for people with disabilities and those who speak a language other than English. This matter was referred to the Committee on Government Operations.

Digital Infrastructure and Electronic City Services: Councilors Edwards and Flynn called for a hearing on digital infrastructure and electronic city services. Residents are increasingly reliant on the City’s digital infrastructure to access information and services, but this infrastructure requires extensive investment and maintenance to ensure it is modern, secure, and accessible. This matter was referred to the Committee on City & Neighborhood Services. 

 MATTERS RECENTLY HEARD

Supplemental Sidewalk Clearance Program: Councilor Flynn reported back as Chair of the Committee on City and Neighborhood Services on a hearing recently held to discuss a supplemental sidewalk clearance program during snowstorms in Boston, sponsored by Councilor Bok. At the hearing, we heard from Chief of Streets Chris Osgood and Public Works Superintendent Michael Brohel, as well as representatives from WalkBoston, Livable Streets Alliance, and the City of Syracuse, NY, to explore policy options to ensure safe streets for seniors, people with disabilities, and others with mobility challenges. (Remains in Committee)

UPCOMING HEARINGS (Streaming online at https://boston.gov/departments/city-council/watch-boston-city-council-tv
  • Our next City Council meeting will be on Wednesday, March 24th at 12PM.

  • Friday, March 19 at 10AM: Hearing regarding commercial vacancies in Boston (Committee on Small Business & Workforce Development)

  • Monday, March 22 at 4PM: Hearing regarding appointments to the Boston Public Health Commission’s Board of Health (Committee on Public Health)

  • Tuesday, March 23 at 1PM: Working session regarding police contracts as policy documents (Committee on Ways & Means)

  • Tuesday, March 23 at 4PM: Hearing regarding the implementation of hte #BPSReady reopening plan (Committee on Education)

For complete notes of Boston City Council meetings, visit MichelleForBoston.com to sign up to receive Council Notes automatically.

Monday, March 15, 2021

Boston City Council Looks at Daycare, Residential Kitchens, Property Taxes, Conservation Corps & More

City Councilor-At-Large Michelle Wu publishes notes from Boston City Council meetings. Below are a few highlights from March 3 and March 10, 2021 Boston City Council meetings: 

VOTES

Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day: We voted unanimously to adopt Councilor Breadon’s resolution designating March as Women’s History Month and March 8 as International Women’s Day.

Boston VNA Health Care Professionals: We voted to adopt a resolution from Councilors Flynn, Edwards and Breadon in support of Boston VNA health care professionals in negotiations for their first-ever union contract, and urges the BVNA management to treat these workers with respect and dignity.

NEW FILES

Inclusion of Daycare Facilities Zoning: In partnership with Councilor Breadon, I called for a hearing regarding the Inclusion of Daycare Facilities zoning regulations. Since 1989, Boston’s zoning code has included Inclusion of Daycare Facilities (IDF) regulations that require developers of buildings above a certain size to either set aside space for an on-site early education facility or cause such facilities to be created off-site. However, these regulations are inconsistently enforced, and some developers have made financial contributions to BPDA in lieu of directly building early education facilities, despite a clear process for determining the size of such financial contributions or how these funds should be used. High-quality early education and care is a public good, but these regulations could be strengthened to increase the supply of early education programs, meet the scale of demand for early education, and meet the needs of all of Boston’s working families. This matter was assigned to the Committee on Planning, Development and Transportation.

Zoning Amendment for Residential Kitchens: Councilor Mejia called for a text amendment to the Boston Zoning Code to update certain aspects of the Accessory Home Occupations definition to include retail residential kitchens. The Committee on Government Operations recently held a working session to discuss necessary changes to Boston’s zoning code to enable residential kitchens to sell cottage goods. During the working session, we heard from representatives of Boston’s Inspectional Services Department, the Boston Planning and Development Agency, and the Office of Small Business Development, and advocates to determine when a residential business would require a permit, the inspectional staffing needs, and necessary wraparound services for business owners to adhere to safety standards. In response to this discussion, Councilor Mejia proposed this text amendment to the zoning code, which was assigned to the Committee on Government Operations.

Off-Leash Dog Recreation Spaces: Councilor Arroyo called for a hearing to discuss off-leash dog recreation spaces in the City of Boston. The current distribution and planned expansion of the City’s dog recreation spaces leaves many residents without access to off-leash recreation spaces, especially in the neighborhoods of Hyde Park, Roslindale, Mattapan and West Roxbury. This matter was assigned to the Committee on Environment, Resiliency and Parks.

Language and Communications Access: Councilor Mejia proposed an ordinance amending Boston’s language and communications access ordinance. There are over 140 languages spoken in the City of Boston, and Boston residents who speak languages other than English often struggle to access City resources and information. There is a need for information to be translated and interpreted, but also to be conveyed in a culturally competent way that reflects its audience. In 2016, I introduced and the Council passed an ordinance establishing a language and communications access plan for the City of Boston’s departments which made accommodations for individuals who speak languages other than English. This matter was assigned to the Committee on Government Operations.

Gender Parity in the Naming of Public Art and Places: Councilor Essaibi George called for a hearing regarding gender parity in the naming of public art and places. She noted that only 10 of BPS’ 125 schools, 2 of the almost 400 properties managed by Parks and Recreation, and none of the Boston Public Library branches are named after women. This matter was assigned to the Committee on Arts, Culture and Special Events.

MATTERS RECENTLY HEARD

Property Taxes and Assistance Programs: Councilor Bok reported back on a recent hearing to discuss property taxes and assistance programs for seniors and long-term residents facing difficulties during COVID-19. Property taxes may increase the burden for seniors and other vulnerable Boston residents and affect their ability to maintain their homes. During the hearing, representatives from Administration and Finance, Assessing Department, Age Strong Commission, and others presented about the impact of property taxes and opportunities to provide relief. (Remains in Committee)

Conservation Corps: I reported back as Vice Chair of the Committee on Environment, Resiliency and Parks regarding a working session recently held to discuss a city-level conservation corps for Boston, sponsored by Councilor Bok and me. During the hearing, we heard from representatives from Boston’s Parks and Recreation Department, Boston Water and Sewer Commission, the Office of Workforce Development, and Philadelphia’s PowerCorpsPHL program, as well as from Boston advocates about opportunities to create an urban conservation corps program that helps the City meet our climate goals while providing workforce development opportunities and sustainable career pathways, particularly for Black, Brown and other underserved Boston residents. (Remains in Committee)

GRANTS

  • $245,900 FY21 Local Culture Council Program grant, awarded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, to be administered by the Office of Arts & Culture to fund the Boston Cultural Council sub-grants. (Passed)

UPCOMING HEARINGS (Streaming online at https://boston.gov/departments/city-council/watch-boston-city-council-tv

  • Our next City Council meeting will be on Wednesday, March 17th at 12PM.

  • Tuesday, March 16th at 10AM: Hearing regarding a supplemental sidewalk clearance program during snowstorms in Boston (Committee on City and Neighborhood Services)

For complete notes of Boston City Council meetings, visit MichelleForBoston.com to sign up to receive Council Notes automatically.

Our South Boston Newsletter: St Paddy's Day, Outdoor Dining, Dog Licenses

News From Our South Boston Liaison: Haley Dillon

St. Patrick’s Day Breakfast Hosted by Senator Nick Collins

With COVID-19 still among us and the difficulties and sadness so many Americans have endured over the last year, Senator Collins is bringing back the breakfast this year with a live, virtual event! He hopes to still bring together the voices of leaders around the community and state, talk about how the community has come together in this tough time and try to add in a few laughs along the way. Click here to read more about the event.

STAY INFORMED AT Facebook.com/SouthieONS

Our community meetings have moved to an online platform and all meeting links will be posted on our Facebook page. You do not need to have a Facebook to access the page and the information. Just type “Facebook.com/SouthieONS” into your browser and you can see information on all upcoming meetings in the South Boston area. 
Click here!

City Announcements

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS ANNOUNCES OPENING OF FIRST VACCINATION CLINIC

Boston Public Schools (BPS) announced today the opening of the first vaccine clinic dedicated to administering COVID-19 vaccinations to educators, bus drivers, bus monitors, administrators and all BPS employees and contractors. The first of two BPS-only sites will open on Sunday, March 14, and will add a new level of access to the COVID-19 vaccine to ensure the health and safety of the BPS workforce.

The first clinic, located at the Boston Centers for Youth and Families (BCYF) Gallivan Community Center in Mattapan, will offer approximately 200 appointments per day. BPS will operate the clinic on Sundays from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm and Monday through Thursday from 2:00 to 7:00 pm. The clinic will run for two weeks, then will be operational again after 21 days to provide second doses for an additional two weeks. Staff and contractors can sign up for appointments at the BPS clinic beginning Thursday, March 11. Read more.

OUTDOOR DINING TO BEGIN IN BOSTON ON MARCH 22

Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced that in collaboration with the Boston Licensing Board and City departments, outdoor dining for approved restaurants in Boston will now begin on March 22 due to the weather forecast. This is an earlier start than the previously-announced date of April 1. 
The 2021 Outdoor Dining Pilot Program will continue many of the successful initiatives from last year's program, such as streamlined permitting and outdoor patios on roadways that enable restaurants with narrow sidewalks to offer patio seating to patrons, while offering new features based on community feedback. Applications for outdoor dining licenses on both public and private property are now open, and businesses can apply online. Read more.

BOSTON DOG LICENSING DEADLINE IS MARCH 31

With a current increase in dog adoptions during the COVID-19 quarantine, the Boston Parks and Recreation Department’s Animal Care and Control Division is reminding City dog owners that the annual deadline for licensing their pets is March 31. All dogs in Boston require a new license each year. Read more

MAYOR WALSH ANNOUNCES APPLICATIONS OPEN FOR FUNDING FOR ORGANIZATIONS SUPPORTING CHILDCARE

Mayor Martin J. Walsh, the Mayor’s Office of Women’s Advancement (MOWA) and the Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA) today announced the release of a Request for Proposals (RFP) of $250,000 in funding to support organizations working to create equitable access to child care services in Boston. Grantees will be awarded until the fund is exhausted. Childcare providers, nonprofit organizations, community stakeholders are encouraged to apply. The application period is now open and proposals will be accepted through April 23, 2021. Application can be found here. Read more.

MAYOR WALSH SIGNS 42 PERCENT INCREASE IN LINKAGE FEES INTO LAW

Mayor Martin J. Walsh today signed a 42 percent increase in Boston’s Linkage fees into law. The Linkage Program requires large scale commercial developments over 100,000 square feet in Boston to pay into funds that support the creation of affordable housing and workforce development. The increase will raise the current fees to $15.39 per square foot, of which $13.00 will be dedicated to affordable housing and $2.39 will be dedicated to workforce training. The increase was proposed by Mayor Walsh in February and follows unanimous approval by the Boston Planning & Development Agency Board and Boston Zoning Commission. Read more.

CITY OF BOSTON COMPLETES $11 MILLION INVESTMENT IN ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND RENEWABLE ENERGY UPGRADES ACROSS 14 CITY BUILDINGS

Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced the completion of the first phase of Renew Boston Trust, the City of Boston’s initiative to invest in energy efficiency and renewable energy measures for municipal buildings. The first phase of the $45 million investment spans 14 City-owned buildings, including libraries, community centers, police and fire stations, and helps reduce energy use, save money, and reduce city-emitted greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change. 
This work marks continued commitment by the City of Boston to lead by example and implement strategies outlined in the 2019 Climate Action Plan update to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and become carbon neutral by 2050. Read more.

COVID EVICTION LEGAL HELP PROJECT (CELHP)

Are you a tenant or owner occupant facing housing instability? The COVID Eviction Legal Help Project (CELHP) provides free legal help to low-income tenants and owner-occupants across Massachusetts in COVID-related eviction cases. To find free eviction legal help in your area go to Find Legal Help. You may also be able to get assistance paying back rent or back utilities or be protected by the federal eviction moratorium. To learn about new changes to the law and links to other resources like rental assistance and food benefits go to EvictionLegalHelp.org.  

ST. PATRICK'S DAY COVID-19 SAFETY GUIDANCE

The City is asking everyone to celebrate responsibly this St. Patrick's Day. The safest way to celebrate is at home with the people you live with, or to gather virtually with friends and family. Attending gatherings increases your risk of getting and spreading COVID-19. When celebrating, please be sure to follow COVID-19 safety guidelines:
  • Avoid crowds and large parties
  • Wear a face mask in public
  • Stay at least 6 feet apart from others
  • Wash your hands often
Celebrate responsibly, Boston. Find more CDC holiday tips here.

INSPECTION SERVICES WANTS TO HEAR FROM YOU 

The Inspectional Services Department will be hosting a series of workshops featuring Boston’s Zoning Code and ISD’s permitting process. In order to get a better understanding of topics to discuss we are asking the community to fill out the questionnaires at http://www.boston.gov/zba-survey

ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS TRACKER 

This new tool will increase access to information related to proposed projects seeking relief from the Zoning Board of Appeals. The tracker is designed for anyone to quickly search for a specific appeal that has been submitted to the ZBA, or to search for appeals based on criteria such as location or applicant, in order to identify the status of the appeal. Visit the ZBA Tracker pageFind the Project Tracker here.

Monday, March 08, 2021

Fort Point Landmarks March 2021 Meeting

The FORT POINT CHANNEL LANDMARK DISTRICT COMMISSION will hold a public hearing on:

Thursday, March 11, 2021
6:00 PM

This hearing will be held virtually and NOT in person. 
You can participate in this hearing by going to our Zoom meeting link 
or by calling 929-205-6099 and entering meeting id 822 6815 9176#
You can also submit written comments or questions to FortPointLDC@boston.gov 
or via Twitter @bostonlandmarks.


I.  DESIGN REVIEW HEARING

APP # 21.0481 FPC    22 Boston Wharf Road
Applicant: Duck Creek Technologies
Proposed work: At the roof, construct a stair head house and roof deck with metal picket railings and acoustic metal panel wall.  

APP # 21.0581 FPC   5 CHANNEL CENTER STREET
Applicant: BP3-BOS3 5 Channel Center Street LLC
Proposed work: At the roof level, install new visible mechanical systems and equipment. At the Medallion Avenue elevation, replace a garage door with louvers in the existing masonry opening.

APP # 21.0704 FPC  22 BOSTON WHARF ROAD
Applicant: Artists for Humanity
Proposed work: Install a public art sculpture at the Stillings Street façade
(modify APP # 21.0238 FPC Certificate of Design Approval)

II. ADVISORY REVIEW

51 SLEEPER STREET
Proposed work: Modify the ground level façade and topography and install signage. 

III. ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW/APPROVAL 
In order to expedite the review process, the commission has delegated the approval of certain work items, such as those involving ordinary maintenance and repair, restoration or replacement, or which otherwise have a minimal impact on a building’s appearance, to commission staff pending ratification at its monthly public hearing. Having been identified as meeting these eligibility criteria and all applicable guidelines, the following applications will be approved at this hearing.

APP # 21.0628 FPC 250-253 Summer Street: At the sea wall, repair existing concrete foundation, repoint deteriorated granite joints, replace galvanic anodes on steel columns in
kind, and fill voids using grout bags. At the Harborwalk, replace deteriorated timber deck boards in kind. 

IV. RATIFICATION OF 2/11/2021 PUBLIC HEARING MINUTES

V. STAFF UPDATES

VI. PROJECTED ADJOURNMENT: 8:00 PM

FORT POINT CHANNEL LANDMARK DISTRICT COMMISSION
David Berarducci, Susan Goganian, John Karoff, Lynn Smiledge, Vacancy
Alternates: Thomas Rodde, Vacancy