Rep. Dykema Hosts Gun Violence Listening Tour in MetroWest

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Representative Dykema has invited Representative Hank Naughton, Chairman of the Joint legislative Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security to bring his Gun Violence Listening Tour to the 8th Middlesex District.

Gun Violence Listening Tour
Monday September 9th, 7pm
Holliston Upper Town Hall
703 Washington Street
Holliston, MA

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Freshman Start School With Laptop Training

A year into its implementation, the 1-1 Laptop Initiative, which requires incoming high school students to have access to a laptop either by utilizing an already purchased one or by leasing an Apple MacBook from the school, was deemed a success by school officials.

On August 26th, incoming freshmen and their parents attended a presentation to learn about the rules and procedures for using the laptops. The rules regarding the machines have not changed from last year, with students being asked to assume responsibility for them. Students are required to bring the laptop fully charged in a zipped case to class each day. Students are also responsible for backing up their data as well as keeping the computer in their lockers when not in use. If a laptop is damaged or stolen, it is the responsibility of the student and parent to address the situation. Laptops that are leased from the school are property of the Hopkinton Public School System until paid off.

Director of Technology for Hopkinton Public Schools, Ashoke Ghosh, says that the school plans on holding seminars during the year which will focus on specific concerns regarding the laptops and computer safety.

For more information about the 1-1 laptop initiative including more details on proper protocols for the laptops, visit the 1-1 laptop site, which can be accessed on the High School's homepage.

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HPTA Hosts Luncheon For New Teachers

As the school year starts up again, new teachers from every school were welcomed to town by the HPTA with a lunch on August 27th at the Middle School. The lunch gave the teachers an opportunity to talk to each other as well as to the school administrators in attendance as well as some of the members of the HPTA.

For the new teachers, many say that they are looking forward to a new school year and working in Hopkinton. Watch the HCAM News video to hear what they have to say!

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Best Buddies and Kona Ice Truck Greet Students on Picture Day

Those hanging around the High School for Freshmen orientation or school picture day on August 27th were in store for a sweet treat. For the second year in a row, the High School's chapter of Best Buddies, an organization dedicated to fostering one-on-one relationships with people that have intellectual and developmental disabilities, sponsored a flavored ice truck in the school parking lot.

The Kona Ice Truck, which helps various community organizations fundraise by donating a portion of their proceeds, was on hand to help the Best Buddies raise money for their various activities that they host throughout the year including their annual dance and Spread the Word to End the Word, a week dedicated to spreading awareness about the harmful effects of using derogatory language to describe those with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Golden Pond Celebrates National Assisted Living Week with “Homemade Happiness” Theme

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In observance of National Assisted Living Week®, September 8 to 14, Golden Pond Assisted Living will sponsor a series of events developed as a special opportunity to bring together residents, families, employees, volunteers and the surrounding community to celebrate “Homemade Happiness.”

The “Homemade Happiness” theme acknowledges the contributions of staff, residents, and families in making the assisted living community a home for residents.

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Hopkinton Hires First Female Career Firefighter

Fire Chief Ken Clark introduced Hopkinton’s newest career firefighter to the Board of Selectmen at their September 3 meeting saying he was happy to present the best applicant who had tested well, interviewed well and came out on top in the selection process. But even more exciting, is that fact that Hopkinton’s newest career firefighter is also its first female firefighter. Sara Jordan comes to Hopkinton from the Town of Boylston where she worked as a firefighter/paramedic and previously from the Town of Orange in western Massachusetts.

“She brings a lot to the table,” said Chief Clark. “She’s a very experienced medic.”

Jordan says she is glad to be here and has plans to stay.

“I look forward to the opportunity of being here for my career,” said Jordan. “I’ll retire here.”

“I am just so thrilled with what we do with public safety in Hopkinton and it’s great to have you on the team,” said Brian Herr. “We look forward to working with you.”

John Mosher, father to two daughters, one of whom just participated in Camp Bailout, a camp for young women interested in fire an emergency services, said his daughter would be inspired to know that
Hopkinton has a female firefighter.

“If you think about it, this has truly historical significance,” said Human Resources Director Debbie Hilton-Creek. “Hopkinton is moving in right direction and I am proud to be part of the team.”

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Selectmen Ask Governor to Replace Mass Gaming Commission Chairman

Selectmen at their September 3 meeting voted to sign and send a letter to Governor Deval Patrick expressing their concerns with the casino process as managed by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) and asking that the chairman of the Commission be replaced. The letter was penned by Ben Palleiko, but signed and supported his fellow board members.

“As a community that is potentially highly impacted by this law, yet completely disenfranchised from the process, the Town of Hopkinton has severe concerns about the pace, process and focus of the MGC,” wrote Palleiko. “We, therefore, ask that you take immediate steps to change the leadership and activities of the Commission in order to ensure that the new law does not damage communities and entire regions of the Commonwealth in pursuit of revenue, and that the high expectations for a fair, transparent and rational process are fulfilled.”

Reviewing the issue with the board, Palleiko explained that his letter was written after a meeting with the Director of Investigations and Enforcement Bureau of the MGC; a meeting that came about due to Hopkinton’s interest in the background checks on individuals associated with Foxwoods, and his dissatisfaction with the outcome of that meeting and the lack of information provided to Hopkinton after multiple requests.

In addition to asking that the leadership of the commission be changed, the letter also cites examples of what the board feels are flaws and failures of the Commission, including the decision which excludes surrounding communities from having any role in the site selection process despite the fact that they will be impacted.

“We are stunned that the concerns of the communities, and even entire regions, of the state can simply be ignored because of whims of any selected host community,” reads the letter.

Other complaints listed include the lack of response to public records requests, or providing information that is so severely redacted as to be useless, the failure of the MGC to meet its own deadlines for certain activities, the lack of public input allowed at public hearings and the release of hundreds of pages of background investigation reports on the morning of the suitability hearings.

“It’s a travesty,” said Palleiko. “It’s so ridiculously over the top that it became something that I could not tolerate any longer. So this letter is designed to be our next volley here, having gotten no redress for any of our concerns for many, many months now.”

“I think this letter is an excellent next step in continuing to explain, professionally, what is wrong with this process and what needs to happen to make it right,” said Selectman Brian Herr, who is also the Chairman of the MetroWest Anti-Casino Coalition (MWAAC).

“I have no hesitation in signing the letter,” said Todd Cestari. “In fact, I would suggest that the way this commission is acting is affecting everybody across the state and I would also suggest that we also distribute this letter to news outlets, both local and regional.”

To see the full text of the letter, click here..

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The New Water Main: An Interview with Eric Carty

Over the summer, construction to replace a 125 year-old water main on Main Street has been ongoing. Currently, the project is still estimated to be completed as initially scheduled, with ongoing pavement of the road until November, followed by a final pavement once the weather clears up in the spring.

Watch the HCAM News interview with Hopkinton's Water-Sewer Manager Eric Carty as he talks about the water main break during construction and the benefits that will be realized from the new water main.

Weston Nurseries Hires Manager for Chelmsford Garden Center

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Weston Nurseries has hired Jim Connolly to manage their Chelmsford, Massachusetts Garden Center. Peter Mezitt, president of Weston Nurseries says “We are thrilled to welcome Jim to our company. He is a well-known leader in our area who brings a tremendous amount of knowledge pertaining to buying and selling green goods and hard goods to both homeowners and landscape companies. I know he is looking forward to managing this location and working with our team to identify opportunities for growth in both locations."

Planning Board Meets on September 9; Public Hearings for the HCA and Maspenock Woods on Agenda

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The Hopkinton Planning Board will meet on Monday, September 9, beginning at 7:30pm in Room 211 at Town Hall. Included on the agenda for the night are two public hearings. The first is a continuation of the public hearing for the site plan review of the addition at the Hopkinton Center for the Arts and the second is a public hearing for the garden apartment site plan for the Maspenock Woods development located at 5 and 11 West Main Street.


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