With the release of a 70 page analysis summary of Fall Rivers municipal and school department budget numbers produced by the Sutter Administration Friday, arrangements are now being made for individual sessions with nine city council members who have questions about what the numbers actually mean.
Sutter Chief of Staff Lou Pacheco tells WSAR News he is available to answer questions.
Pacheco says different council members will focus on various portions of the document.
The installation of 22 windows at Fall River Government Center during the summer of 2013 continues to be investigated at the local and state level.
Sutter Chief of Staff Lou Pacheco says the transition team also has looked into the issues involved and says he has also examined the issues involved, and says procurement procedures were not followed:
Pacheco says nothing illegal has been discovered.
Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healy has indicated to WSAR News that her office is familiarizing themselves with the files left behind by former A.G. Martha Coakley.
As casino investors in Brockton, New Bedford and Somerset continue their pursuit of the third and final destination resort casino license for region c, Don Setters, the Chair of the Somerset Board of Selectmen tells WSAR News that various items will be considered once artist renderings are available from Crossroads Massachusetts.
Setters says he’s hoping for high speed ferry service as one means of traffic mitigation and says traffic concerns are something that can be monitored.
Setters wants to see gift certificates offered as part of a players club program to Somerset restaurants and businesses, as part of an agreement with developers.
The region c license is to be awarded by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission in the fourth quarter of 2015.
FALL RIVER: Today, the Transition Team appointed by Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter released the data they have been compiling throughout the course of their analysis of Fall River’s finances. These statistics were the source material that the Transition Team drew from for their Executive Summary, released Monday, March 16th.
Said Sutter: "My Transition Team has released a comprehensive outline of the data that supports Part 1 of their Financial Report. The information provided today is a detailed picture of where Fall River stands financially. I wanted the public to have these numbers so that we can all plainly see where we are at as we begin taking steps towards fiscal sustainability.
"I am grateful for all of the hard work the Transition Team put in in pulling this information together and helping to provide the community with the hard data behind the budget,” Sutter continued. “I look forward to opening up a dialogue with the community about what this information means in the immediate future and for our long-term vision for the City."
Sutter also announced that the Transition Team will be publishing one more document within the next week that further explains the data released today.
The report can be read on the City's website at the following link:
A decision on a new Somerset Town Administrator is due at some point this spring, as the race between two contenders comes down to interviews Tuesday, with a potential decision expected Wednesday.
Somerset Board of Selectmen Chair Don Setters indicates to WSAR News that former Fall River City Administrator, and current Seekonk Administrator Shawn Cadime and Richard Brown, who has administrative experience in Rhode Island are the two contenders for the post.
The contract of former Town Administrator Richard Lutrell was not renewed earlier this year, as selectmen indicated they wanted to go in a different direction.
The Massachusetts Economic Assistance Coordinating Council has approved a tax incentive financing agreement with Amazon.
FROED Executive Vice President Ken Fiola tells WSAR News he remains optimistic and says a second TIF was also approved for the expansion of Blount Fine Foods in the Fall River Industrial Park.
Fiola says the TIF with Blount is also significant in terms of job retention.
Tuesday’s Amazon TIF approval is just another step toward the potential construction of a one million square foot distribution center that has the potential to create 500 full time and as many as 1,500 part time jobs.
The Fall River City Council Committee on Ordinances and Legislation has agreed to expand water and sewer service to Tiverton, Rhode Island.
Fall River Community Utilities Director Terry Sullivan tells WSAR News the agreement is part of a long term strategy to broaden a customer base that uses Fall River services for higher fees than city residents currently pay.
Sullivan says the drive to add more consumers continues.
Sullivan says an effort is also underway that would add more consumers in various communities where Fall River provides water and sewer services.
The City of Fall River has earned around 3-thousand dollars for the first two months of the first degree murder trial of former Patriot Aaron Hernandez, however, City Councilors are asking if current ordinances on parking need to examined, or enforced.
At issue was a CNN satellite truck that has remained in place on a 24 hour a day basis since the trial started.
Traffic Director Laura Ferreira says she was following the rules outlines in the current ordinance.
Councilor Linda Pereria countered that statement.
Ordinance and Legislation Committee Chair Jasiel Correia says proper procedure was followed.
Pereria says issues regarding long term media parking for the trial should have come before council.
Traffic Director Laura Ferreira says she followed the current ordinance and did what she thought was fair for the media involved.
There remains a possibility that Patriots Majority Owner Bob Kraft and Patriots Head Coach Bill Belicheck could be called to testify.
Ferreira says police presence is available for high profile witnesses and jury members.
The President and CEO of the Fall River Area Chamber of Commerce and Industry met with senior staff members working for Senator Elizabeth Warren and Massachusetts 4th District Congressman Joseph Kennedy Monday in Boston, lobbying for a lower interest rate for the ongoing federally mandated CSO Project.
Rob Mellion tells WSAR News
Mellion says there may be room for discussion on at least one topic.
Mellion says there appears to be somewhat of an agreement.
Mellion says he’s trying to work with the congressional delegation to lower the interest rate, which could potentially save Fall River millions of dollars for a project that is modernizing the city’s network of water infrastructure all while keeping the Taunton River protected.
National Grid says nearly one million basic service electricity consumers can anticipate lower energy bills as rates decline beginning May 1st.
Pending Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities approval, a typical residential consumer using five hundred kilowatts of electricity will receive a bill 26 percent lower than their previous bill, equating to about $32 a month.
National Grid maintains that severe winter increases in electricity bills are due to natural gas interstate pipeline constraints.
With New Bedford, Somerset and Brockton in contention for a potential region c destination resort casino license, office holders in all locations believe a license needs to be awarded, despite misgivings aired by members of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.
New Bedford City Councilor Brian Gomes
Somerset Board of Selectman Chair Don Setters indicates the new business model for resort casinos focuses on nightclubs and entertainment:
Steve Wynn has indicated he will have many of the same restaurants in his Everett location that are available in Las Vegas.
The Fall River City Council Committee on Ordinances and Legislation meets Monday at five thirty with a nine item agenda.
Committee members are expected to discuss water rates for municipal water supply customers and resolutions regarding guidelines for physically challenged taxi cab users as well as potential fines for illegally parking in handicapped spaces.
New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell, in testimony before the Massachusetts Gaming commission Thursday afternoon, says the Whaling City is now in a position to be awarded the region c destination casino license.
New Bedford recently finished its application process with K-G Urban Enterprises.
According to the New Bedford Standard Times, Mitchell says a casino on the city’s waterfront is part of a larger economic strategy.
Massachusetts Gaming Commissioner James McHugh says the status of the region c license is still in question, depending on what happens with the Mashpee Wampanoag’s plan in Taunton.
The region c license is set to be awarded during the fourth quarter of 2015.
Fall River Public School Committee Member Melissa Panchley, who also serves as Chair of the Finance Subcommittee, will assist in the construction of the fiscal year 2016 budget as questions persit regarding a$1.3 million dollar miscalculation in health insurance line items.
Panchley tells WSAR News the amount of Chapter Seventy state dollars are increasing, as Fall River currently has eighty percent of its school department budget covered by the Commonwealth, with the city contributing the remainder.
Panchley says the process of meeting with school building principals continues, in hopes of determing what the needs are in each building.
Panchley says, in many cases, principals are asking for an approximation of what they received in the prior fiscal year.
There will be a closure of the Route 24 SB ramp onto 195 EB in Fall River tonight, Wednesday, March 18th and tomorrow night, Thursday, March 19th from the hours of 8 PM to 5 AM to allow for MassDOT to perform bridge deck repairs.
There will be a detour in place leading drivers to Route 24 SB onto 195 WB to follow to Rte. 24 SB to Brayton Ave and travel to 24 NB and then onto 195 EB. A map of the detour is attached.
MassDOT encourages drivers to avoid the area and seek alternate routes to minimize delays. Those traveling through the area should expect delays and should reduce speed and use caution while traveling along the detour routes.
The duration of work will also be weather dependent and based on the amount of concrete deterioration.
Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter tells WSAR News that for now voters will not be asked to approve a two and a half override but will likely be paying higher water and sewer rates.
City Councilor Mike Miozza tells WSAR News that it will not be easy to fix Fall River’s finances.
Sutter indicates that hitting net school spending targets for fiscal years 2015 and 2016 could be difficult to achieve and says that enterprise funds for water, sewer, e-m-s and sanitation need to be replenished, as over the last four fiscal years, the funds have not kept with expenses, resulting in a shortfall of $25.4 million. Sutter says rates will need to rise to correct the imbalance:
Miozza says he understands why water and sewer rates will likely need to be raised.
Full Council is set to debate the municipal side of the fiscal year 2016 budget for this spring.
While the Massachusetts Gaming Commission is set to further discuss the region c license situation Thursday afternoon additional information regarding the Somerset casino proposal is being disclosed, according to The Herald News.
One of two managing general partners of WSAR Radio, James Karam, who developed the crossroads project that brought a Wal-Mart Super Center and Sam’s Club to Fall River and the former CEO of Foxwoods Casino, Scott Butera, will likely appear before the Commission this week, as three projects, including Somerset, New Bedford and Brockton--are looking to secure the region c destination license.
Somerset Board of Selectmen Chair Don Setters tells WSAR News discussions are still in the early stages and says there is a time concern due to the fact that a referendum would need to be set for Somerset voters.
Setters says he would also like to see a trio of public forums to place prior to a possible referendum.
A referendum is set to be place before voters in Brockton in May.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission is reporting that while the first phase of the application from ''Mass Gaming and Entertainment'' a Chicago-based group looking at a Brockton location, is ''substantially complete'' for its Brockton effort, K-G Urban Enterprises and the City of New Bedford are asking for a 45-day extension, while Somerset on the Move LLC and Crossroads have jointly asked for an extension in a verbal request with written confirmation to be turned over this week.
The Commission is set to discuss Region C Issues at its next meeting this coming Thursday, March 19; it will review extension requests while inviting all three entities to testify before the Commission.
A May 26 deadline has been set for the second phase of a two part application.
Seekonk Police are looking for suspects in relation to a Saturday Morning Armed Robbery attempt that happened in the parking lot of the Raymore and Flanagan location in the 100 block of Highland Avenue.
A couple attending to a child handed over a diaper bag and a cell phone, after a single suspect displayed a handgun while the couple were in their vehicle.
The prime suspect in the case then went inside the Raymore and Flanagan location, allegedly assaulting 2 customers and a store employee, before leaving the location empty handed.
The suspect was wearing gray hoodie and ''something white'' wrapped around his face, along with dark pants and dark sneakers.
He left in a getaway vehicle that was described as a dark hatchback model.
Police from Seekonk, East Providence, and Mass State Police continue their investigation into the robbery.
An eight person Sutter administration transition team has released a 14 page summary of numbers as Fall River deals with municipal and school department budget issues.
The transition team says putting the City on a sound financial footing cannot be done ''without significant policy changes and a new approach to the budgeting of the city’s funds''.
In the report, Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter is being asked to ''prepare the citizens of Fall River and both past and present employees of the city government for the shared sacrifices that gradually will be required to return the city's finances to a healthy state''.
Fall River currently has $500,000 in its reserve line items. The transition team says the city should have between 24 and 48 million dollars in reserves.
In conclusion, the transition team writes that the Sutter administration will need to ''revise staffing to affordable, realistic levels'' and is ''reviewing salary and non salary costs within city government''.
A nine item agenda is before the Fall River School Committee Monday evening at 6:30 at Kuss Middle School.
The agenda consists of an update by the Massachusetts School Building Authority regarding an application for a new BMC Durfee High School and a discussion regarding a recommendation to use 3.38 million dollars, transferred from the municipal side, to deal with net school spending issues.
The Committee is also to discuss an overview of fiscal year 2016 budget projections and a host of policy revisions dealing with issues such as domestic violence, bidding requirements and background checks.
The Fall River School Committee deals with a 9-item agenda Monday Night at Kuss Middle School beginning at 6:30pm.
The committee will get an update on a Massachusetts School Building Authority Application for a new BMC Durfee High School, and will also discuss recommendations to use $3.38 million that was transferred this month from the Municipal Side of Government to close out lingering Net School Spending issues.
An overview of the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget projections, and a host of policy revisions, covering items from Domestic Violence to bidding requirements and background checks will be part of a first reading.
Seekonk Police are looking for suspects in connection with a search warrant that was executed early this morning in the 200 block of Fall River Avenue.
The search warrant was part of a larger investigation initiated by the Providence Police Department; no one was in the residence when the search warrant was executed.
Seekonk Police indicate they found was is being termed ''a considerable amount of controlled substances'', thought to be cocaine and prescription drugs that were seized in the raid, along with items used to package narcotics.
An Arrest warrant is being prepared to allow Seekonk Police to arrest the occupant of the residence in connection with the raid.
There will be a closure of the Route 24 SB ramp onto 195 EB in Fall River on Sunday, March 15th and Monday, March 16th from the hours of 8 PM to 5 AM to allow for MassDOT to perform bridge deck repairs.
There will be a detour in place leading drivers to Route 24 SB onto 195 WB to follow Rte. 24 SB to Brayton Ave and travel to 24 NB and then onto 195 EB. A map of the detour is attached.
MassDOT encourages drivers to avoid the area and seek alternate routes to minimize delays. Those traveling through the area should expect delays and should reduce speed and use caution while traveling along the detour routes.
The duration of work will also be weather dependent and based on the amount of concrete deterioration
Somerset Selectmen Board Chair Don Setters tells WSAR that while he supports legislation sponsered by Bristol Plymouth First District State Senator Mike Rodrigues that seeks to bring the cooling towers down at the Brayton Point Power Plant if the plant closes in June 2017, Setters wants to explore the possibility that the towers could be a tax producing entity for the town if its new owners decide to keep the plant functioning.
Setters also has concerns over smokestacks that he tells WSAR also need to come down; smokestacks remain at the Montouck Power Plant that has been closed for several years.
Bristol Plymouth First District MA State Senator Mike Rodrigues tells WSAR, on Tuesday's Edition of ''The WSAR Newsroom'' that he has a pair of bills filed on Beacon Hill concerning the immediate future of the Brayton Point Power Plant, including asking that as part of the aftermath of its planned June 2017 closure, that the twin cooling towers that are only a few years old be torn down.
Rodrigues tells WSAR that he wants to insure that the Town of Somerset not be on the hook for the aftermath of the plant, and does want to see the towers remain part of the landscape if the plant goes off line.
The Towers were constructed by Dominon Energy, as the former owners of the plant, to insure that water pumped back into the Taunton River was at a temperature that would not harm fish in the river.
Rodrigues tells WSAR that as of now there is no other source of power that would replace the electricity that is produced by the plant, which is set to close in June 2017.
Fall River City Council Member Leo Pellitier tells WSAR on the Tuesday Edition of ''The WSAR Newsroom'' that its time for an Ordinances and Legislation Committee to take up the issue of additional language added to the current Solid Waste Ordinances that would set prices for the Purple Bags used in the Pay As You Throw Program, while also adding additional language regarding recycling.
Pelliter noted that Council voted by a 6-3 margin earlier this month to send the issues to committee; Ordinance and Legislation Committee Chair Jasiel Correia II has yet to schedule a session to deal with the issues involved.
Pelliter says residents are concerned regarding compliance issues regarding Pay As You Throw, as there is confusion over the purchase and use of the bags; others have complained about the construction of the bags issued by North Carolina-based Waste Zero.
The Massachusetts Office of Labor and Workforce Development is reporting that January 2015 estimates indicate that the current Massachsetts Unemployment rate, as reported by the Commonwealth, dropped to 5.1% from the revised December 2014 rate of 5.3%, down two tenths of a percentage point.
The Commonwealth claims that 2600 jobs were created in January.
Local Area Unemployment Numbers for January 2015 are set to be released this coming Thursday March 12.
Six items of New Business are on the agenda for the Somerset Board of Selectmen Wednesday Afternoon at 6pm at the Somerset Public Library, including the appointment of a new member of the Somerset Fire Department and a New Police Officer.
Remote Participation, which has been discussed by selectmen for a couple of years, and would allow for selectmen to take part in meetings via speaker phone hook up when members are on vacation or otherwise not in Somerset, will be discussed and perhaps voted on, if a proper ordinance is ready.
An Update on a potential destination resort casino is also part of the agenda.
The Fall River City Council will hear from CliftonLarsonAllen regarding an Independent Financial Audit when the Finance Committee meets just after six tomorrow night; council also also be asked to transfer $340,000 for FRFD Salaries, and $105,100 for EMS Salaries, after an objection from Council Member Leo Pellitier earlier this month.
Council will also look at a revised TIF Agreement with Amazon, and new Inter municipal agreements with Tiverton and North Tiverton regarding water services.
The complete council packet is available at the City of Fall River Website via a link on its home page.
Bristol 7th District State Rep Alan Sylvia is calling for a special session of the Fall River City Council's Committee on Public Safety, in the wake of issues with overtime line items that total at this point around $75,000, and must last through the end of the current fiscal year.
Sylvia took to his Facebook page over the weekend after hearing from constituents who have concerns over the closure of the Globe Street Fire Station, which is being repaired this Spring.
Sylvia says he spoke to Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter this weekend, and with Bristol Plymouth First District State Senator Mike Rodrigues regarding the FY 2016 level funding request for EPOSS Grants for Police and Fire Staffing.
Sylvia says he has also reached out to the chair of the Fall River City Council's Public Safety Commission, Paul DaSilvia, to call a session of the committee to discuss FRFD staffing and overtime issues.
According to the President of the IAFF Local representing Fall River Fire Fighters, the overtime line items in the current fiscal year have around $75,000 in them; when that money runs out, at least one apparatus will be closed on the city's South Side, with the number of firefighters responding to serious calls dropping from 34 to 29.
Jason Burns tells WSAR, on the Friday edition of the ''WSAR Newsroom'', (available as a podcast in the ''newscast'' designation) that an Action Plan was devised by the FRFD Chief, as the FY 2016 budget is under construction and will be laid out later this month.
Issues with FRFD overtime happened weeks after the FY 2015 budget was in operation; a Commonwealth Public Safety Grant helped replenish overtime line items a few months ago.
A Democratic House Member from Pawtucket filed a resolution in Providence calling for a feasibility study of McCoy Stadium, which will be empty if the Pawtucket Red Sox move to a new Providence Waterfront Ballpark in 2017.
McCoy Stadium lies within Mary Duffy Messier's District in Pawtucket.
The Resolution asks for the Rhode Island Department of Administration's Division of State Wide Planning, and the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation to conduct a feasibility study as to what sort of Development could happen on the site, along with any improvements to existing roads, streets and highways nearby, with a June 1 Deadline.
Five Fall River Police Officers helped in the arrest of a single suspect in a shooting Thursday afternoon in a Maple Gardens Housing Complex Apartment that happened around 6pm.
21 year old Christopher Swindell was taken into custody after what was described as a brief foot pursuit.
A 22 year old suffered a gunshot wound to the stomach; he was taken to the Trauma Unit at Rhode Island Hospital, where he is listed in Critical Condition.
The shooting, according to investigators, happened in Building 27 of the Maple Gardens Complex; the FRPD says the weapon was located the weapon used in the shooting was found in a rear hallway of the building.
Fall River Police were told an argument preceded the shooting, and that Swindell allegedly bit one man on an arm prior to the shooting.
Swindell is charged with six counts in relation to the shooting, including armed assault with intent to murder; he was also wanted on four outstanding warrants, including a pair of narcotics warrants.
Pilgrim United Church to Open Early for Residents in Need of Shelter
Pilgrim United Church (634 Purchase Street) will open as of 5:30PM for unsheltered residents. The church will be equipped with staff, food and cots.
Reminder: Trash Collection Operating on One Day Delay
To allow city crews to properly treat the roadways, city officials in partnership with ABC Disposal announced earlier today that residential trash collection in New Bedford will be delayed by one day for the remainder of the week. If your trash is normally collected on Thursday (today), it will be collected tomorrow, Friday. If your trash is normally collected on Friday, it will be collected on Saturday this week.
City Garages at Elm Street and the Zeiterion Free and Open to the Public Until 12 Noon Friday
Downtown parking is available at no charge in the Elm Street and the Zeiterion Parking Garages as of 3:30PM today, March 5, 2015 through noon tomorrow, Friday, March 6, 2015.
SRTA Services Suspended as of 6PM Tonight
The Southeastern Regional Transit Authority has announced it will suspend service at 6PM this evening. Riders should call (508) 999-5211 for information about the status of SRTA services. For more details visit www.srtabus.com.
New Bedford Regional Airport
The New Bedford Regional Airport will remain open to permit scheduled operations to continue.
The New Bedford ''Standard Times'' is reporting that Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut has signed a letter of intent with KG Urban Enterprises in New Bedford to potentially operate a casino on New Bedford's Waterfront, if the developer is awarded the Region C Destination Resort Casino License in the fourth quarter of 2015.
KG Urban, along with a partnership formed with Crossroads and Somerset On The Move LLC, have a March 16 deadline to submit initial applications to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.
A Chicago based developer is looking at a Brockton location; their application is already in the hands of the Mass Gaming Commission.
Fall River Superintendent of Public Schools Meg Mayo Brown issued a public apology on the Thursday Edition of the ''WSAR Newsroom'', (available as a podcast in the newscast portion on WSAR.com), saying the final call as to whether or not to go to school on Thursday in the midst of an advancing snowstorm was hers alone to make.
Mayo Brown confirmed to WSAR that one elementary school child was taken to a local medical facility after complaining of neck pain when the van he was in was part of a minor accident on the way to school Thursday morning.
Fall River Public Schools have one day left as far as postponing classes; schedule complications would involve the April Break; Mass General Law closes school on June 30; students are also required to be in classrooms for 180 days.
Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter and the Executive Vice President of the Fall River Office of Economic Development, Ken Fiola, have indicated to WSAR that Amazon has decided to alter their original plans for their 1 million square foot proposed facility at the Fall River Bio Technology and Life Sciences Park, but that the project continues to move forward towards completion.
Sutter tells WSAR that he has been told that the number of jobs, originally said to be at least 1,000 full time jobs, have been reduced, perhaps to a number approaching 500 full time.
A revised TIF agreement was approved by the Fall River TIF Board this morning, and heads now to the Fall River City Council at its next session this coming Tuesday.
A Commonwealth TIF Board will be the next item to deal with issues related to Amazon.
Its possible a ground breaking could happen later this summer, with an opening in the Summer or Fall of 2016.
The Fall River City Council's Committee on Ordnances and Legislation will take up the next phase of the ongoing debate over the Pay As You Throw Program at some point this month, as Committee Chair Jasiel Correia II tells WSAR he wants numbers from the prior Administration that he maintains were never sent to Council on five different options that were under consideration in 2014, before Pay As You Throw was selected.
Correia says he has a resolution of his own that he wants considered; his was one of three no votes on Tuesday night on the question of sending the revised Solid Waste Ordinance, with language concerning the Pay As You Throw Program and recycling, along with the price of the bags, to Ordnances and Legislation.
Council Member Dan Rego tells WSAR that there could be a seven figure penalty if the Pay As You Throw Program is rejected in a 90 day window, as the city would be on the hook for the inventory of bags manufactured specifically for Fall River.
Fall River has another parking ban starting tonight...this release from the Sutter Administration:
Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter has announced that there will be a parking ban going into effect at 6:00pm tonight (Wednesday, March 4th). The ban will be lifted at midnight Thursday night.
The Department of Community Maintenance requested the ban because forecasts indicate that this will be a long, slow-moving storm, and the ban will provide plows with adequate room to clear streets for emergency vehicles.
Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter and his transition team have selected a date of Monday, March 16, as the date for the release of a report to be entitled ''the State of Fiscal Affairs in The City of Fall River''.
A draft is already being authored by former Fall River City Administrator Alan Silva and the Special Assistant to the Mayor, Rob Bentlyewski; Chief of Staff Lou Pacheco says a ''clear comprehensive report'' will be released this month.
Sutter says Part One of the Report will be executive summary of 10 to 15 pages, that can be readily understood.
Sutter says Part Two will supply details and will present data and statistics.
Sutter says he hopes the report will generate a city wide discussion.
The Fall River City Council will get a first look at two and half pages of amendments covering recycling, the price of purple trash bags, and other items in relation to Solid Waste and Recycling, during a special session of the Council Tuesday at 5:45.
The chair of the Ordinance and Legislation Committee, Jasiel Correia II, tells WSAR that as the 2015 political season continues, any votes taken by council could have ramifications if September produces a primary for the nine seats up for bid, and for the November General Election, when 18 contenders via for the nine seats for a 2016-17 term.
Correia has told WSAR that as he sets meetings of the committee for March and for much of the spring, various aspects of solid waste and recycling will come up for discussion.
The price of a gallon of regular self serve unleaded gasoline continues to move upward, as Triple A Northeast is finding that prices are up at the pump by 12 cents in the last week, and 31 cents over the last month.
Regular self serve unleaded is now at an average of $2.37 a gallon in the Commonwealth; the current price is 6 cents lower than the current national average of $2.43.
Mary McGuire is the director of Public and Government Affairs for Triple A Northeast; she says seasonal maintenance at refineries, and a volatile global market regarding crude oil is going to keep prices ticking upward this spring.
The range in prices according to Triple A is 47 cents a gallon from a low of $2.08 to a high of $2.55.
The Fall River City Council meets in a Special Session Tuesday afternoon starting at 5:45pm with three items on the agenda, including a pair of orders for a storage permit from Percise Packaging Realty Trust to store 27.500 gallons of LPG pharmaceutical grade in the 300 block of Riggenbach Road; a second order will allow for underground conduit in the 100 block of Columbia Street for a new and rebuilt Sagres Restaurant.
Council will also get a first look at communications from the Acting Corporation Counsel regarding the initial ordnances for the Pay As You Throw Program.
The Fall River City Council will get a look at a first draft from the Acting Corporation Consul regarding ordnances that will govern the likely ongoing Pay As You Throw initiative including the price of bags, and other components.
Council has a special meeting on Tuesday that has the proposed regulations as part of its agenda; a link is available at the City of Fall River's Official Website.
Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter, on the Friday edition of the ''WSAR Newsroom'' (available as a Podcast at WSAR.com) maintains that PAYT is legal and enforceable; Chief of Staff Lou Pacheco indicated to WSAR this week that a ramp up in fines is forthcoming once ordnances are in place.
The University of Massachusetts Presidential Search Committee has selected the Executive Recruitment Firm Korn Ferry to help locate finalist contenders to succeed the departing UMass System President Robert Caret.
Korn Ferry has assisted more than 100 University Systems in selecting new leadership.
The 21 member search committee is comprised of students, faculty and staff, along with political and business leaders.
UMass says its looking for an accomplished leader with a need for an ''entrepreneurial spirit'' to lead through difficult financial times, and to further fundraising efforts.
The Fall River Public School District has been granted a request by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to push back MCAS Testing Days as a result of the extreme winter weather so far in the first two months of 2015.
Superintendent Meg Mayo Brown tells WSAR that doing so will give teachers at least a week of additional instruction time to help prepare students for the testing, that is used as one of several components in deciding the level rating given to various public school buildings in the Commonwealth.
The Chairman of Boston 2024 spoke to the Fall River Area Chamber of Commerce and Industry at the organization's annual session at the Venus Di Milo in Swansea, as John Fish told a gathering that South Coast Rail and other transportation issues could benefit from a Boston bid for the Summer Olympic Games in 2024.
Fish told a gathering of business and political leaders that the Olympics represents an effort to think in bold terms and to to begin a discussion on what Massachusetts will look like later in the century.
The Sutter Administration told reporters in Government Center that the city of Fall River will pursue a third SAFER Grant that would fund the salaries and benefits of 10 FRFD members for at least two consecutive fiscal years, bringing the total complement of firefighters to 185.
Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter says that while there would be costs involved for potential pension and unemployment if the city could not sustain the 10 slots in future fiscal years, he felt the decision to pursue a third SAFER grant was the correct one to make.
The FRFD benefited from four consecutive fiscal years of SAFER Grants at $7 million a year, which covered the salaries and benefits of 69 fire fighters; the fourth and final year of the grant ended in FY 2015.
The Brockton Enterprise is reporting that current issues surrounding the MBTA, which include a $3 billion backlog of needed repairs and a $9 million unfunded pension liability, should halt any further discussion of South Coast Rail, which would involve links to New Bedford, Taunton and Fall River.
Stoughton Selectmen Robert O'Regan told the Brockton Enterprise that current issues with the T should end the effort to build South Coast Rail.
Raynham Selectman Joe Pacheco says South Coast Rail need not be attempted, given the current mismanagement of the system under the auspices of the MBTA.
Spokespersons for the Baker administration indicate that Governor Baker continues to the support the concept of South Coast Rail, but says it will take several years and more than $2 billion to bring it to fruition.
The Fall River City Council's Committee on Economic Development and Tourism will deal with a five item agenda Wednesday at 6pm in Government Center's second floor Council chambers.
Discussion of using digital video platforms to promote Fall River, and how to market and rehab various mill buildings are on the docket, as are continuing discussions of mooring facilities on the city's waterfront.
Fall River City Council Veteran Leo Pellitier tells WSAR that his advice to anyone in Fall River is to purchasing the Purple Bags that have come to symbolize the Pay As You Throw Concept, while the Ordinance and Legislation committee is debating penalties for those who refuse to comply; the issue of the cost of the bags could also be a part of the discussion after a decision Friday to debate the issues in a sub committee.
On Monday's edition of the ''WSAR Newsroom'', Pelliter indicated that the PAYT idea should have vetted by Ordinances and Legislation in the first place; former Fall River Mayor Will Flanagan said that an ordinance was not necessary.
Fall River Mayor Sam Sutter has indicated to WSAR that the program is a success, is legal, and is likely going to raise the money that was first forecast in 2014, when Pay As You Throw was first proposed as a solution to the closing of the Fall River Landfill.