By Pattie Pacella, Neighb News Correspondent
The Acushnet Selectboard celebrated centenarian Therese M. Ledoux at on Tuesday, 9/5.
Chairperson Kevin Gaspar said that Ms. Ledoux was a retired Kindergarten Teacher and the first Kindergarten Teacher so many years ago for Acushnet.
Mr. Gaspar said he attended her party and she was highly recognized in the community as a wonderful, loving woman; he wished her the best. Selectboard member Roger Cabral read the citation given to Ms. Ledoux on behalf of the Selectboard and then she was presented with the Boston Post Cane by the Board.
The cane is a tradition begun in 1909 by the publisher of the Boston Post newspaper, Edwin A. Grozier. He forwarded 700 New England towns a gold-headed ebony cane with the request that it be presented with the compliments of the Boston Post to the oldest citizen of the town (women were later included in the tradition), to be used by him/her as long as he/she lives or moves from the town, and at his/her death handed down to the next-oldest citizen of the town. The cane would belong to the town and not the person who received it.
Laughter erupted when Ms. Ledoux said, “Now can I get a reduction on my taxes!”
In another matter, Dan Menard, Superintendent of the DPW, told the board that the Recycling Collection Center for bulky items has opened.
He said that residents will be able to pay with a check or cash at the Collector’s office and then bring their receipt to the recycling center to dump their stuff.
Town Manager Brian Noble stated that very soon, residents will be able to pay with a credit card right on the Acushnet website and have their receipt on their phone to show at the center.
Mr. Menard and the board also discussed a failed septic system at Wamsutta Avenue and Main Street. He said approximately 15 houses will be affected and would then be able to tie into the sewer line. He said the work will be done in-house, saving the town a lot of money.
Mr. Gaspar expressed that his biggest concern with the situation was to make sure the residents in that area are well informed of the betterment that will be added to their property taxes to tie in.
Mr. Noble stated that after the meeting, the 15 homes will receive a letter both by mail and certified mail, and will be invited to a public hearing at the next Selectboard’s meeting on September 19th. Mr. Noble also said that they will probably call the residents as well to remind them of the meeting.
In his own report, Mr. Noble gave kudos to the DPW team and to Dan Menard.
“It is a staggering amount of money that Mr. Menard has saved the Town and he does everything with a smile,” said Mr. Noble. “It amazes me every time I ask him to do something he says, ‘yes.’”
Mr. Noble also reported that the Town has adopted the Code Red Emergency Notification. Residents can now log onto the Acushnet website if they want to sign up their cell numbers or email to receive general notifications as well.
Mr. Noble also informed the board that the Assessors Property cards are now available on-line for the public. He thanked Assessor Kelly Koska for all her hard work in making it happen.
Mr. Gaspar ended the meeting with heartfelt thanks to all the employees and Mr. Noble. He said all the work that has been done in such a short eight months is “commendable.”
“It’s definitely been a group effort,” said Mr. Gaspar.
He also thanked the residents for their patience and commitment to Acushnet.
In other business, the Board heard from Jeff Helm, the town’s Insurance Advisor who reviewed the town’s insurance coverage and savings of almost $79,000 over FY’17 costs.
Before signing off for the evening, Mr. Gaspar thanked everyone who was part of the Car Cruise Night.
“From the DPW crew, to EMA and Matt Lopes, we couldn’t do it without you,” he said, adding that the event was very successful with approximately 150 cars.
After the meeting the board confirmed that the town hall hours have shifted back to the five-day work week, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., with the Clerk’s Office open until 8 p.m. on Tuesdays.
The town had tried a four-day workweek from June 5 to September 1, with town hall closed on Fridays. The board discussed the trial period in executive session, citing union negotiations as the reason, at its August 15 meeting, and voted then to go back to the original hours.
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