Barnstable This Morning

Assistant Town Manager Mark Ells appeared on Monday’s edition of “Barnstable This Morning”. Mark talked with host Sarah Colvin about the Town’s role in the 208 water quality plan, provided an update on e-permitting, reviewed the budget process and the role of the Assistant Town Manager, and talked about work being done to address a number of parking issues in town.


Town Council April 16th Agenda Set

The Town Council agenda setting meeting was held on April 7th, 2015. Town Council President Jessica Rapp Grassetti announced that two presentations will be included in the meeting. First, the Barnstable High School 2015 Girls Gymnastic Championship team will be recognized, and second, Daniel Burke from Boy Scouts Troop 54 Centerville, for attaining the rank of Eagle Scout. Seven items under Old and New business fall outside the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP). Council leadership will take those seven items out of order, prior to beginning public hearings on the CIP, in order to allow time to concentrate on CIP items.


Recreation Commission: Osterville Bay Presentation

On Monday, John Crow, President of the Osterville Village Association, and Lindsey Counsell, Chair of the Community Preservation Commission, presented the latest plan for the Osterville Bay School / Community Building and recreation fields to the Recreation Commission.  The plan is still in the development stage and the Osterville Village Association will be holding two meetings in the near future (Tuesday, April 14th at 7 p.m. and Tuesday, May 12th at 7 p.m. - both at the Osterville Village Library) to further refine and come to consensus on the plan.  Town Councilor Jim Crocker was present for the meeting. The Commission was pleased with the work to date.  Prior to the start of the meeting, Recreation Program Coordinator Michelle Davies was recognized by the Commission for receiving the Massachusetts Recreation and Parks Association's Therapeutic Professional of the Year.  At the end of the meeting, Commissioner Spanky Demanche was recognized for receiving the Ted Damko Award from the Massachusetts Secondary Schools Athletic Directors' Association.


Marstons Mills Visioning

On Tuesday evening the Marstons Mills Village Center project team met with village residents to discuss the 75% design plans for streetscape, safety, and pedestrian improvements in the village center.  Town Engineer Roger Parsons, Growth Management Director Jo Anne Miller Buntich, McMahon lead Maureen Chlebek and Horsley & Witten lead, Brian Kuchar presented the 75% progress construction plans to the group of more than 100 gathered at the Marstons Mills Community Church. Town Councilors Sara Cushing and John Norman were in attendance.  The team reported on permit progress for the boardwalk connecting village sidewalks to the Mill Pond area and the Scenic Road tree removal hearings to take place shortly with the Planning Board and the Tree Warden. While the project adds about 10 spaces to the parking inventory, Mr. Parsons and Ms. Buntich committed to returning to the village after the team once again works on configurations for parking on Cotuit Road, Main Street and the main intersection.  Once 100% design is completed the project will move to construction perhaps as early as the fall of 2015 or the spring of 2016.



Lombard Field Design Plan

On Tuesday evening, Town Architect John Juros along with Consultants Richard Webb, Landscape Architect and Director of Site Services and Landscape Architect John McMeeking of SMRT Architects and Engineers presented the 25% design plan for Lombard Field and the adjacent parking area to the West Barnstable Civic Association (WBCA) Board of Directors. Town Councilor Phil Wallace was present for the meeting. After some lively discussion, the WBCA Board endorsed continuing with the design.  Town staff including Leisure Services Director Patti Machado, who was also present at Tuesday's meeting, Mr. Webb and Mr. McMeeking have been invited to make another presentation to the WBCA's General Membership during their meeting on Tuesday, May 19th at 7 p.m. at the West Barnstable Community Building.


Senior Managers Meeting

Senior Managers met this week.  We reviewed the action taken by Town Council at the last meeting, and planned for our presentations on forty-three capital requests. Growth Management gave an update on the Marston Mills Village design and implementation plans, and Community Services discussed the Lombard Field design meeting with West Barnstable Civic Association board members and the progress the Osterville Village Association is making with the redevelopment of the Osterville bay School fields. Chief of Police Paul MacDonald expressed ongoing concerns about the opiate problems in the mid-Cape. Look for two new features on our website as Regulatory Services is developing both a health and parking website.


Pedicabs on Main Street, Hyannis?

The Licensing Authority is entertaining issuing a license for a pilot program allowing five pedicabs to operate in downtown Hyannis.  Consumer Affairs Director Liz Hartsgrove met with the Chief of Police Paul MacDonald, Legal, Assistant Town Manager Mark Ells and me to discuss draft regulations for pedicabs and pedicab operators. Pedicabs, a human powered mode of transportation, are gaining popularity in cities and towns across the US.


Signs of Spring: Artist Shanties on the Move

Summer must be right around the corner, because the Hy-Arts shanties are in place and will open in a little more than a month. This Tuesday, the eight brightly colored shanties were moved from their winter storage location at the Armory on South Street in Hyannis, and placed in their summer spot at Bismore Park. Each year, the popular Hy-Arts shanties provide a picturesque setting to view art made by both man and nature. Works vary and include photography, painting, handmade jewelry, mariner knot work, wood carving, tapestry, fiber art, and so much more. All artists are locals whose primary residence is here on Cape Cod. Opening Day for the artist shanties is Friday, May 15th. Visit for details.



Spring Rabies Baiting

The US Department of Agriculture in conjunction with the Cape Cod Rabies Task Force will begin filling rabies bait stations during the week of April 20-24.  Hand baiting is scheduled to occur in Barnstable on May 5th. The effort is designed to vaccinate wildlife against rabies, to reduce and ultimately eliminate rabies on Cape Cod.  While baits are harmless to pets, you are asked to keep your dogs and cats away from the baits, as they are meant to be eaten by wildlife. 


New Electric Vehicles

Barnstable’s green vehicle fleet is expanding. Two new Nissan Leaf all-electric vehicles are in use by Assessing and the Water Supply Division, and last week Town Council accepted a $22,500 grant from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection that will fund the purchase or lease of two more vehicles and a new electric vehicle charging station. The new cars will go to Assessing and Senior Services and the new charging station will be installed at the Barnstable Senior Center.


Brazilian Radio Interview

In a first for Barnstable, Chief of Police Paul MacDonald, Economic Development Specialist Mike Trovato, and I were interviewed by Sylvio Brauna of Radio 1240 am.The topic was Know Your Town (Conhenecendo a sua cidade) and will be broadcast in Portuguese. Radio 1240 am is a part of Rede Abr-A Brasileira, the network that broadcasts in Portuguese, the language of its audience. We were pleased to be afforded this opportunity to reach out to the Brazilian community and to discuss security and economic issues in Barnstable.




Cable Advisory Meeting

The quarterly Cable Advisory Committee meeting is being held this Friday afternoon at Barnstable High School. Cable funds are used to support the BHS Media Center. Members of the Cable Advisory Committee will have a chance to tour the television studio and get an update on the educational offerings of the facility.


New Bismore Gateway Greeter Seasonal Position

The Consumer Affairs division is seeking applicants for a new Bismore Gateway Greeter/Parking Attendant position. This new position will serve as a front-line representative of the Town of Barnstable at the park, one of the primary points of contact for the hundreds of visitors that arrive at Bismore Park on a daily basis during the peak visitation period. The new position is an enhancement of the parking attendant position.

Click here to view the position online.

Watch Consumer Affairs Supervisor Elizabeth Hartsgrove’s interview about the new position on “Barnstable This Morning”: Town Website   YouTube


Autism Awareness Campaign

Barnstable is Lighting it Up Blue in honor of Autism Awareness Month, which began April 1st.  CapeAbilities Executive Director & President Rosalie Edes joined me and Director of Public Works Dan Santos in the Town Hall lobby last week to install two blue light bulbs that will be lit during the month of April in honor of National Autism Awareness month. CapeAbilities is an organization dedicated to serving individuals with disabilities on Cape Cod by educating, counseling and providing residential, therapeutic, social and employment supports that empower them to achieve meaningful and valued roles in the community.


Amy C. Davies Artwork on Display at Town Hall

The work of Harwich-based photographer Amy C. Davies will be on display in the Town Hall Hearing Room and Selectmen’s Conference Room through May 29, 2015. Amy uses vintage cameas and film to convey the story of Cape Cod through her landscape and street photography. “Film is a way for me to connect to people and my surroundings.  The process of using a vintage camera is a slow, deliberate act that allows me to take a moment to get to know an area or inteact with a person before making a picture,” Davies says of her work.  Amy has a BA in art, lives in Harwich, and has worked in radio and television on Cape Cod for the past two decades. The Artwork on Loan program provides a venue for local artists to dispay their work. For more information on the program, email or call 508-862-4767. Pictured: “The Moors”






Last week’s trivia question: Last week, we asked: How many stops are on the Kennedy Legacy Trail?  Damon O. of Marstons Mills and Demi K. of Centerville both knew that there are ten stops on the Kennedy Legacy Trail!


This week’s trivia question:  The Hy-Arts Shanties at Bismore Park have housed hundreds of artists over the years. Opening day for the 2015 Shanty season is on May 15. How many artists will participate in the program this year?  Email your answer here



Barnstable This Morning is our daily live news program that includes up to date newscasts, important community information, and interviews with Town leaders. Tune in every weekday morning at 7:00 AM on Barnstable (Comcast) Channel 18.


Barnstable This Morning

Week in Review

April 6-10, 2015


Monday, April 6, 2015


Assistant Town Manager Mark Ells joined us live in studio with a number of updates, including information on capital improvements, parking, the 208 Water Quality Update, and e-permitting.  Superintendent of Schools Dr. Mary Czajkowski reviewed the recent National Honor Society Induction and the upcoming school committee vote on the proposed Fiscal 2016 budget.  Energy Coordinator Richard Elrick stopped by to tell us about an upcoming celebration for the completion of a number of solar installations on Cape Cod, and a tour for first graders of the renewable energy resources at the Water Pollution Control facility. Cape Cod Community College Communications Director Michael Gross previewed the College’s spring production of Lysistrata, a fun and racy Greek play that is sure to be an audience pleaser.


Tuesday, April 7, 2015


Chief of Police Paul MacDonald began our program on Tuesday with information on a joint investigation with Yarmouth Police that led to the arrest of a career criminal.  Our Community Profile segment featured incoming Sturgis East Principal Paul Marble, who is moving up to become Executive Director next year.  Cape and Islands State Senator Dan Wolf talked to us about potential changes to the State’s Earned Income Tax Credit. Director of Public Works Dan Santos provided an update on two projects underway at Barnstable Harbor.


Wednesday, April 8, 2015


Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce CEO Wendy Northcross was our Business Barnstable guest on Wednesday. She previewed the Smarter Cape Summit that will be held in May.  Principal Planner Elizabeth Jenkins came to the studio to discuss the Community Rating System process that could help Barnstable homeowners save on their insurance policies. Consumer Affairs Supervisor Elizabeth Hartsgrove talked to us about a new seasonal Gateway Greeter position at Bismore Park. Director of Finance Mark Milne joined us for a discussion on the development of the Operating Budget.



Thursday, April 9, 2015


Thursday’s program began with Len Gobeil’s Sports segment. This week he talked with Barnstable High School Athletic Director Scott Thomas about spring sports at BHS. Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority Administrator Tom Cahir talked with us about a state grant that will fund several new buses, recognition for a heroic bus driver, and a technology award for the RTA. 5th Barnstable State Representative Randy Hunt talked to us about the successful treatment and re-entry program at the Barnstable County Correctional Facility, and promoted an upcoming tour of the facility that is open to the public.  We wrapped the show with our Community Profile segment, an interview with Cape Cod Council of Churches Executive Director Diane Casey Lee.


Friday, April 10, 2015


Barnstable High School Art Instructor Matt Kemp was our Arts & Culture segment guest this week. Next, Hyannis Youth & Community Center General Manager Joe Izzo talked with us about changes to the open gym schedule. Licensing Clerk Sue Maffei shared information about Barnstable’s Best Dog ContestDirector of Leisure Services Patti Machado reviewed recent lifeguard tryouts. Natural Resource Officer Amy Croteau had information and procedures regarding baby wild animals.