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REHOBOTH ANTIQUARIAN SOCIETY RECEIVES $10K GRANT FROM

BRISTOL COUNTY SAVINGS FOUNDATION FOR

(September 8, 2014) Bristol County Savings Bank (BCSB), through its charitable foundation, recently awarded a $10,000 grant to the Rehoboth Antiquarian Society (RAS) specifically to help fund a $165K building rehabilitation project at Goff Memorial Hall.

   The foundation grant will be combined with other funding sources. Rehoboth voters approved funding 50% of the project using Community Preservation Act funds. The RAS must raise the remainder from other grants and public fundraising.

    Built in 1915, Goff Hall houses the Blanding Public Library and an auditorium used by many groups in Rehoboth for meetings and other events. The renovation is required to make the building accessible to patrons with disabilities including the construction of handicapped-access restrooms. The building currently does not meet the standards of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The new restroom facilities will be part of an addition to the building.  All exterior work must meet historic preservation guidelines.

     “Supporting the communities we serve is a core principle of the Bank so we look forward to seeing firsthand the positive impact these not-for-profits will continue to make throughout the greater Attleboro area,” said Patrick J. Murray, Jr., President of the BCSCF and President & CEO of BCSB.

      Bristol County Savings Bank is an active supporter in the communities in which it serves. The Foundation was established in 1996 as part of the Bank’s 150th anniversary celebration.  Its purpose is to fund needs that contribute to the economic and the social well-being of the people and institutions located in the in the bank’s service area with particular emphasis on education and literacy, economic development and housing for the low- to moderate-income population. 


BUSY AGENDA SET TONIGHT FOR SELECTMEN WITH RESIGNATIONS,

APPOINTMENTS, WARRANT FOR OCTOBER SPECIAL TOWN MEETING

(September 8, 2014) The Rehoboth Board of Selectmen have a lengthy agenda for tonight’s regular session at the senior center beginning at 7 PM following an closed executive session to address personnel issues and contract negotiations.

    After a public hearing on proposed tree removal on Williams Street, the BOS will vote to accept resignations and make appointments and reappointments to municipal committee.  They will also vote to accept the resignation of Norellen Palmer, the present senior center director.  An in-house applicant for the position of fire chief will be interviewed.

    Selectmen will continue their discussion, for the fourth time, to place an additional stop sign at Fairview Avenue and Ash Street to make that intersection a three-way stop.  Another intersection on Fairview at Homestead was make into a three-way stop earlier this summer.

    Also on tonight’s agenda is voting to increase the Valor Act tax abatement from $350 to $400 for those veterans volunteering a designated number of work to the town in exchange for reduced property taxes.

    The board will review the draft for the October 27 special town meeting.  The warrant is expected to be closed on September 18.  As always, open public forum will follow the posted agenda items.


TOWN OF REHOBOTH POSTS TWO DEPARTMENT HEAD JOBS

(August 30, 2014) The Town of Rehoboth has officially posted to department head job openings, the position of Fire Chief and the position of Veterans Services Officer.

  Longtime veteran fire chief Robert Pray, whose retirement has been planned and anticipated for the last year, will leave duty in early October.  His official retirement date is in March 2015. 

    The postion of Veterans Services Officer, aka Veterans Agent, is currently vacant. Selectmen hired Steve Arruda several months ago to replace Bill Saunders, who retired from the VSO position after fourteen years of service. Arruda, for reasons unspecified, is no longer a town employee.  Saunders has stepped in to serve temporarily through September 16.  Click here to view both job postings.

   

OFFICIALS MAKE 6-MONTH SCHOOL COM APPOINTMENT

(August 28, 2014) Rehoboth resident Katherine Cooper had been appointed to a six-month term on the Dighton-Rehoboth Regional School Committee. She fills an open seat left by the resignation of Ray Medeiros prior to the end of his elected term.

   Four candidates were interviewed for over an hour on Monday night by the five Rehoboth selectmen along with the four Rehoboth representatives of the school committee. The other candidates for the temporary appointment were Andrea Wasylow, Rachel Philip and David Reed.  All four were applauded by selectmen for their outstanding resumes and desire to serve the community on the regional district committee.

    The working relationship between selectmen and school committee members grew increasingly antagonist since the beginning of this year. Selectmen began discussing de-regionalizing the school district soon after the school committee announced a calculation mistake of over a million dollars in the yearly assessment for the school budget. Selectmen and candidates clearly acknowledged the obvious discord and rehashed elements of “divisiveness and level of mistrust.”

   When asked about their opinion on de-regionalizing, all four candidates said they would need to have more information, but offhand thought it would not be a cost-effective course of action. They did agree the regional district agreement has not been examined or changed in years and that would be an appropriate next step.

    The selectmen and Rehoboth members of the school committee voted 6 to 3 on a singular motion to appoint Cooper.  The permanent seat is up for election next April.


REHOBOTH POLICE ARREST TEEN AFTER HIGH SPEED CHASE

(August 27, 2014) Rehoboth police yesterday evening arrested a Swansea teen on Route 6 for an array of vehicular charges.

    According to the police press release, Sgt. Medeiros and patrolman Paul McGovern were monitoring traffic on Rt. 6 when several vehicles passed their location at a extremely high rate of speed and appeared to be racing.

   James S. Cornelison, age 18, was taken into custody after being pursued by Sgt. James Medeiros at speeds in excess of 90 mph on Route 6 in Rehoboth into the town of Swansea. Police say Cornelison’s vehicle, an Infinity, “turned down Baptist Street which is a dead end and came to a skidding stop.”

    Cornelison was charged with drag racing, reckless operation, refusing to stop for police and speeding. He was released on $540 cash bail and was scheduled for arraignment today in Taunton District Court.


REHOBOTH SELECTMEN TO MEET WITH DIGHTON SELECTMEN,

INTERVIEW CANDIDATES FOR SCHOOLCOM SEAT

(August 25, 2014) Rehoboth selectmen today have a packed agenda for tonight’s BOS meeting at the senior center beginning  with a chat with the Dighton selectmen followed by interview of candidates for the empty Rehoboth school committee seat. 

    Selectmen will continue a discussion of a request to place a third stop sign at the intersection of Fairview Avenue and Ash Street, a request for a guardrail at 299 Plain Street, and a request to use the old Anawan School for a yard sale.

    Operation of the Blanding Public Library will be addressed when selectmen vote to authorize a payment of $101K to the Rehoboth Antiquarian Society, and sign a grant agreement between the town and RAS.

     Other business will include accepting Chapter 90 money of $48,333 for Wheeler Street, $29K for drainage improvement in various locations, and $273K for resurfacing roadways.

    The town’s license renewal agreement with Comcast will be discussed along accepting $100K as a first payment for the license, along with approving the payment of $14K for legal fees related to the license renewal.  Selectmen will vote to accept additional Comcast monies of $89K for operation of RehobothTV, the selectmen-managed public access television operation.  Two weeks ago, selectmen requested a yearly payment of $40K to $50K from the Town of Dighton because RehobothTV broadcasts school committee meetings on Channel 15, a shared educational channel with Dighton Comcast subscribers.

    Also on tonight’s agenda will be a discussion of the October special town meeting and warrant articles for that meeting.  Selectmen will also vote to sign a pilot solar agreement with Blue Wave Capital for a potential solar farm at the Rehoboth landfill.

    The regular session of tonights BOS meeting will begin at 7 PM following an executive session featuring contract negotiations, the old Anawan School, a town building, and personnel issues.


KEVIN BRAGA NAMED NEW DRRHS PRINCIPAL

(August 21, 2014)  In a press release issued yesterday from Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Anthony C. Azar Kevin Braga was named the new principal at Dighton-Rehoboth Regional High School.

    Braga, a former history teacher at DRRHS for four years, was appointed one of the school’s assistant principals in 2011. A Navy veteran, Braga is a graduate of Bridgwater State College (now Bridgewater State University) were he earned a masters degree in Educational Leadership. 

   “We look forward to working with Mr. Braga as part of the Administrative T.E.A.M. (Together Everyone Accomplishes More),” said Azar, “and we are confident that he will meet the extremely high expectations that we have set for him in this new role.” 

    The community is invited to meet Principal Braga and the school’s administrative team on Wednesday, August 27 at 6:30 PM in the high school’s media center.


ARCHIVED NEWS ARTICLES - 2014


ARCHIVED NEWS ARTICLES - 2013

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Pictured (left to right) are: Louis Ricciardi, Board Member, BCSCF and BCSB and President, Ricciardi Financial Group; Edward Pariseau, Jr., Board Member, BCSCF; Susan Withers, Board Member, BCSCF;  Thomas Charnecki, President, Rehoboth Antiquarian Society/Blanding Library; Laura Bennett, Director of the Library; Patrick Murray, President & CEO, BCSB and President, BCSCF; and Russ Martorana, Board Member, BCSCF and President, FBinsure.

NEW SCHOOL DISTRICT COMMITTEE SEEKS CITIZEN REPRESENTATIVES

(September 17, 2014)  Two Rehoboth citizen volunteer representatives are needed for the recently created Dighton-Rehoboth Regional School Committee’s Regional Agreement Amendment Committee (RAAC). Rehoboth residents who may be interested in volunteering to serve as a citizen representative on a newly formed Regional Agreement Amendment Committee (RAAC). to reassess the regional agreement are encouraged to apply ASAP for an appointment to be made next week.    The regional school committee, along with the boards of selectmen from both towns, agreed to appoint two citizen representatives each.  One will be appointed by the respective town’s selectmen, and the other by the regional school committee.  Applicants must be able to attend two meetings per month for a period of six to twelve months. Interested parties should apply immediately.

    Those who wish to seek an appointment by the Rehoboth Board of Selectmen should send a letter of interest along with a resume and completed Talent Bank form to Rehoboth Town Administrator Jeff Ritter at the Rehoboth Town Office.  You can email him with any questions at jritter@town.rehoboth.ma.us.

    Those interested in being the school committee’s appointee to RAAC, should immediately send a letter of interest and resume to Dr. Anthony Azar, Superintendent.  Please address that correspondence to: Eliza Couture, Chairman, Dighton-Rehoboth Regional School Committee, 2700 Regional Road, North Dighton, MA 02764.

    Applications must be in by Friday, September 19.  The Rehoboth selectmen plan to make their appointment on Monday, September 22. 

    The appointments will be announced at the next regular meeting of the school committee on Tuesday, September 23.  


DEADLINE FAST APPROACHING FOR LION’S CITIZENS AWARDS NOMINATIONS

(September 16, 2014)  The Rehoboth Lions are accepting nominations through Saturday, September 20 for their 14th annual Citizens Recognition Awards to be presented at a banquet on October 22 at the Venus de Milo in Swansea, MA.

    Everyone is invited to submit a nomination for the twelve awards presently annually to individuals who either live or work in Rehoboth, or an educator/staff from Palmer River Elementary, Beckwith Middle, and DRRHS.

    For more details about the awards and how to nominate, go to the Features page or visit the Lion’s website.  Nominations must be submitted by September 20 to Russell Latham, PO Box 633, Rehoboth, MA 02769. The following info is required: nominator’s name, contact info and signature along with the nominee’s name and contact info (specific which award) along with an additional narrative page explaining your reasons for nominating that person.


SELECTMEN TO DISCUSS TOWN SNOW REMOVAL POLICY

(September 15, 2014)  Rehoboth selectmen will meet tonight at the senior center with a relatively short agenda including a discussion with Highway Dept. Superintendent Mike Tyler on the town’s snow removal policy.

    Other road-related items on tonight’s agenda include voting to approve the Chapter 90 final report with a total figure of $210K and approving the Winter Rapid Recovery Road program final report with a figure of $92K.

    Selectmen will appoint an interim Veterans Service Officer/Veterans Graves Officer, and make appointment to the recently formed Regional School Agreement Review Committee.

    They will review the draft warrant for the upcoming fall special town meeting scheduled for October 27.


DELINQUENT DOG OWNERS MAY FACE ARREST WARRANTS

(September 12, 2014)  Rehoboth’s Animal Control Officer Jane Foster issued a warning to dog owners during open public forum at Monday night’s selectmen’s meeting.

    Dog owners who are delinquent in renewing annual dog licenses will be first receive a citation and fine.  If licenses with proof of current rabies vaccination are not renewed, a warrant will be issued for the dog owner’s arrest.

    “You will end up in court and you can be arrested,” said Foster.  

     Selectmen Skip Vadnais noted the issue of unlicensed dogs is taken very seriously by officials.  If an unlicensed dog is collected by animal control, the animal will be cared for at the animal shelter behind the town office.  Owners then face a fine for the annual license, a late fee, and shelter boarding fees.  If they owner does not comply, an arrest warrant will be issued.


ANIMAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE NOW COMPLETE

(September 12, 2014)  Rehoboth selectmen recently completed making appointments to the town’s new Animal Advisory Committee created in April.

    The five-member committee, created to advise the selectmen on issues of animal welfare, includes two alternate members who can attend meetings but have no formal vote.  Jane Foster, the town’s animal control officer will also play an active role working with the advisory committee.

    As liaison with the committee, Selectman Skip Vadnais stated the group will be charged with addressing important issues and policies related to companion animals, farm animals and wildlife.  The committee will advise selectmen with their recommendations. 

   The five members of the committee are: Koren Collins, Richard Cohen, DVM, Amy Hurd, DVM, Richard Panofsky, and Lynn Pray.  The two alterate members are Elizabeth Botelho and Robin Seaman.  The group will begin meeting soon.

   

REHOBOTH SELECTMEN APPOINT NEW FIRE CHIEF

(September 10, 2014)  On Monday night, Rehoboth selectmen voted unanimously to promote Deputy Fire Chief Frank Barresi to the position of full-time fire chief to replace Chief Robert Pray who is retiring.

   Rehoboth firefighters filled the back of the meeting room at the senior center in support of Barresi’s appointment.  Barresi, a 27-year veteran of the Rehoboth FD, received chief level accreditation in June through the Massachusetts Fire Service Commission, a gubernatorial appointed board that has established a process for uniform credentialing for the level of fire chief.

   Pray, who is retiring after 38 years in the department and 18 years as chief, told selectmen he was confident the town’s on-call fire department would be left in good hands with Barresi in charge.  BOS chair Mike Costello said Barresi was the best choice to lead the department.

    While Pray’s last day on the job is October 3, his official retirement date is March 6, 2015.


SENIOR CENTER DIRECTOR SUBMITS RESIGNATION

(September 10, 2014)  Rehoboth selectmen have accepted the resignation of Rehoboth Senior Center Director Norie Palmer effective next month. 

    Palmer served as the center’s activities director for several years before being appointed to the position of director in September 2011.  She told selectmen she was submitting her resignation with a heavy heart.  She and her husband are moving permanently to their second home in Florida. Palmer currently serves as vice-president of the non-profit, Friends of the Rehoboth Animal Shelter.

    The senior center director is a town department head position who works together with the Rehoboth Council on Aging board of directors to manage senior center operations and staff. In March 2013, the salaries of senior center staff were hotly debated prior to spring town meeting.  While selectmen objected to raising salaries, town voters approved the pay increase for the director from $29K per year to $36K.