October 28, 2016 – Issue 40

Our community was devastated by tragedy over the past weekend. Four young men, two of whom were 2015 Barnstable High School graduates, were killed in a car crash involving a wrong-way driver on Route 495 in Middleboro. Our thoughts and hearts are with the families of Kraig Diggs, Jordan Galvin-Jutras, Jordan Fisher, and Cory Licata. Hundreds of people gathered on the Hyannis Village Green on Wednesday night for a vigil held in support of the families of the victims of that crash, as well as in support of Thomas Russell of Hyannis, who was killed in a stabbing incident in Hyannis last weekend. Additionally, our Human Resources Department held a pair of grief sessions at the Hyannis Youth and Community Center.

Early Voting Off to a Strong Start

Town Hall has been a very busy place this week, with residents turning out in droves for Barnstable’s first-ever early voting. As of the close of polls Thursday, 1,934 voters have cast ballots. Early Voting will continue at Town Hall next week, Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM until 4:30 PM. Tomorrow, Saturday, October 29, early voting will be held at Barnstable Police Headquarters, 1200 Phinney’s Lane, Hyannis from 8:00 AM until 2:00 PM. Polls will also be open on Election Day, Tuesday, November 8, 2016 from 7:00 AM until 8:00 PM.



Homeless Committee Meeting

On Monday, October 24, I met with the Committee to Assess Homelessness in Hyannis. Earlier this month, a large group of stakeholders met at Town Hall to talk with Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito and Rose Evans of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. We reviewed that discussion, and also shared ideas to support a feasibility study of supportive housing.


Interview Process Underway for Assistant Town Manager

The search for an Assistant Town Manager is progressing. The list of candidates was narrowed down to the top ten, and interviews have begun, with the goal of naming a new Assistant Town Manager by the end of the calendar year. There was great interest in the position, with more than one hundred applicants.


Hyannis Open Streets a Success

On Sunday, October 23, the Greater Hyannis Civic Association and Hyannis Main Street Business Improvement District held a second successful Open Streets event. Thousands flocked to Main Street Hyannis, which was closed to traffic from Barnstable Road to Sea Street from noon to four. We are already looking forward to spring! Of note: Main Street will also be closed to traffic on Monday, October 31 from 4:00 to 6:00 PM for the annual Safe Trick or Treat event.


Economic Development Update

On Wednesday, I met with the Barnstable Economic Development Committee to review current economic development initiatives. We are currently auditing our various permitting processes with the goal of creating a streamlined process and a positive climate for business growth in Barnstable. I shared my support of a grant-funded initiative to create the Barnstable Innovation Center, similar to the Chestnut Innovation Center in Newburyport, Connecticut. The Innovation Center would serve as an incubator for coastal building projects, as part of the local Blue Economy initiative.


Substance Abuse Committee Meeting

On Thursday, I met with the Committee to Analyze the Impact of Illegal Drugs on the Barnstable Community. I have created a work group of municipal employees including Barnstable Public Schools, Police, Community Services, and the Town Manager’s Office. This group has discussed individual departmental efforts regarding substance abuse, grant opportunities that would help in coordinated efforts, agreed that the focus of our efforts should be on education and preventative programs. We also agreed that to maximize the success of this effort, there must be a clear vision from our community leaders that this is a priority in our community, and we expect active participation by stakeholders in the common effort to end substance abuse.


Parking Study Underway

The Town of Barnstable is undertaking a comprehensive study of parking supply, utilization, and management in Downtown Hyannis. With its walkable downtown, restaurants, thriving local businesses, and high-speed ferry service Hyannis is both a vibrant local economic hub and a major regional gateway to the Cape and Islands. This success has significant benefits, but also poses challenges. The Town benefits from huge numbers of seasonal visitors and economic development potential but must also balance economic growth with the year-round needs of local businesses and residents. A well-managed, flexible parking system can support these needs. This study effort aims to maintain the economic vibrancy of Downtown Hyannis while ensuring safety, improving mobility and addressing residents' concerns.


Polling Location Change: Barnstable Precinct 11

Election Day is November 8, 2016. Barnstable Precinct 11 voters will vote in a different location this year. Voters will head to the polls at Barnstable-West Barnstable Elementary School, 2463 Main Street, West Barnstable. Barnstable Town Council approved the polling location change during the Thursday, October 6, 2016 meeting.


Centerville Osterville Marstons Mills Water Department Improvements

The Centerville Osterville Marstons Mills Water Department will be making necessary water system improvements on Route 149 near the intersection of Route 28 and Lovell’s Lane in Marstons Mills.  Motorists are advised to seek alternate routes or avoid the area as only one lane will be open. The project is underway, and it will continue through December. If you have any questions, please contact the Department at 508-428-6691.


Last week, we asked: Which historic landmark in town will be repaired and renovated thanks to Community Preservation Funds, approved this week by Town Council? Many of you wrote in with the correct answer – the Dottridge homestead in Cotuit!

This Week’s Question: By close of business Thursday, how many Barnstable residents had participated in early voting? Email your answer here.


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