Four appointed to Framingham’s first community preservation committee


FRAMINGHAM – The four extraordinary members of the inaugural Framingham Community Preservation Committee have been selected.

Councilors last week selected former District 8 Councilor Judith Grove, former planning council member Thomas Mahoney, Eastleigh Farm owner Doug Stephan and 20-year-old resident Liz Kaprielian to sit on the committee. nine members.

The committee also includes a member of the Planning Council (Joseph Norton), the Housing Authority (Janice Rogers), the Parks and Recreation Commission (Shannon Stevens), the Historical Commission (Fred Wallace) and the Commission de la conservation (TJ Liveston). They were selected from their respective councils.

Advisors searched for candidates with previous experience in open spaces, agriculture, outdoor recreation, historic preservation, affordable housing, planning and project management. The demographic and geographic diversity within the committee was also crucial, the advisers said.

“Great candidates”

The council received 14 nominations for the four extraordinary seats, said District 6 Councilor Phil Ottaviani.

“We’ve had some great candidates,” said Ottaviani, who chairs the board’s nominations subcommittee. “It was an awesome group, I’ll be honest with you. All 14, in one way or another, were more than capable of serving on this committee.

Each councilor voted for four candidates. Grove, Stephan, Mahoney and Kaprielian got the most votes.

“It was a difficult decision,” said City Council Chairman George King.

Grove, who served on City Council for a term, is an environmental activist who has worked to improve recreational opportunities for people living in Framingham’s Environmental Justice Quarters.

“I believe my successful efforts to build Framingham’s first skatepark, to bring in the recommendation and redesign of Mary Dennison Park, and to convince the conservation department to make improvements to Cedar Swamp demonstrate that I have the experience,” dedication and the ability to become a productive member of the community preservation committee, ”Grove wrote in a letter to city council.

Kaprielian told councilors that she often spends time using the town’s outdoor recreation areas and has previously volunteered at Access Framingham.

“I am excited about the opportunities that the Community Preservation Commission will provide the city to further develop open spaces, as well as to preserve and showcase our city’s unique history,” she wrote to councilors. . “The CPC will provide a channel for funding project ideas that stem from ideas from our diverse community. “

Mahoney has been involved in city and state government since 1985. He is a former member of the city assembly and served on the planning board for 18 years.

“I think I’m uniquely qualified to sit on this committee,” he said.

Stephan is a founding member of the Framingham Agricultural Advisory Group and was a member of the municipal assembly for eight years.

“My understanding of conservation and open land concepts relies on knowing and complying with the latest regulations and advice from private and public officials, including being very active in the operation (of Sudbury Valley administrators) to whom I am renting out several fields that are used for (agriculture) and for conservation purposes, ”Stephan wrote to the advisers.

Framingham adopts CPA

In November, voters overwhelmingly passed the Community Preservation Act, which allows the city to add a 1% surtax to local property taxes to raise money to finance open space, historic preservation, recreation. and the development of community housing, projects that are often postponed. The nine-member committee will review and approve the proposed projects.

In February, Mayor Yvonne Spicer vetoed the council-approved CPA ordinance after having disagreed with the councilors on who appoints the members of the general committee. Councilors voted to override Spicer’s veto in early March.

Although the mayor appoints the members of the five CPA food committees – and all other multi-member committees under the charter – these respective council representatives are chosen by the council, not the mayor.

Spicer, who stressed that she was in favor of the CPA, said in February that the ordinance excluded the mayor from the appointment process and was against the city charter.

The state’s CPA law is not specific about an appointing authority for the committee, but grants a community’s legislative body the authority to write a local CPA ordinance. The CPA law stipulates that the ordinance or the regulation determines the composition of the committee, the duration of its mandate and the mode of selection of its members. State law can replace a city charter.

Jeff Malachowski can be reached at 508-490-7466 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @JmalachowskiMW.

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