Cambridge City Council meeting - Sept 16, 2013 - AGENDA

RECONSIDERATION
1. A communication was received from Susan Carter, 41 Holden Street transmitting two petitions requesting that the curb cut for 93 Kirkland Street be denied.

CITY MANAGERíS AGENDA
1. Transmitting communication from Richard C. Rossi, City Manager, requesting that the City Council formally appropriate/allocate the Community Preservation Act (CPA) funds as follows:

1A. 80% of the FY2014 CPA Local Fund revenues ($5,920,000) allocated to Affordable Housing and appropriated to the Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust;
Approved 8-1 (Kelley NO)

1B. 10% of FY2014 CPA Local Fund revenues ($740,000) allocated to Historic Preservation;
All items approved 9-0

1C. 10% of FY2014 CPA Local Fund revenues ($740,000) allocated to Open Space;
All items approved 9-0

2A. 80% of FY2013 State Match revenues ($1,520,000) allocated to Affordable Housing and appropriated to the Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust;
Approved 8-1 (Kelley NO)

2B. 10% of FY2013 State Match revenues ($190,000) allocated to Historic Preservation;
All items approved 9-0

2C. 10% of FY2013 State Match revenues ($190,000) allocated to Open Space;
All items approved 9-0

3A. 80% of the Fund Balance ($800,000) allocated to Affordable Housing and appropriated to the Affordable Housing Trust;
Approved 8-1 (Kelley NO)

3B. 10% of the Fund Balance ($100,000) allocated to Historic Preservation;
All items approved 9-0

3C. 10% of the Fund Balance ($100,000) allocated to Open Space;
Approved 9-0

4A. Appropriate ($7,500) from the Fund Balance for the cost of the Community Preservation Coalition Membership Dues.
Approved 9-0

CHARTER RIGHT
1. That the City Manager is requested to confer with relevant City staff to review the possible applicability of a platform program for outdoor cafe seating in Cambridge. [Charter Right exercised by Councillor Reeves on Order Number Nine of Sept 9, 2013.]
Adopted as amended

O-9     Sept 9, 2013  Sept 16, 2013  Amended
COUNCILLOR KELLEY
WHEREAS: Café seating on sidewalks can result in extended narrow stretches of sidewalks that can make it challenging for other users to enjoy the sidewalk as they walk or jog through Cambridge; and
WHEREAS: Café outdoor seating does much to enliven Cambridge’s streets and make the City more vibrant; and
WHEREAS: Other cities, such as Montreal, have kept their sidewalks clear by having café outdoor seating take place on wooden platforms built adjacent to the sidewalk curb on parking spots; now be it therefore
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to confer with relevant City staff to review the possible applicability of such a platform program for Cambridge’s outdoor seating and whether alcohol can be served on space that is on the street and report back to the City Council on this issue.

2. That the City Manager is requested to confer with relevant City staff about the possibilities of starting street cleaning at a later time in the morning. [Charter Right exercised by Vice Mayor Simmons on Order Number Ten of Sept 9, 2013.]
Adopted

3. That the City Manager is requested to confer with relevant City Staff and MBTA officials to investigate the possibility of having busses or other large public vehicles available at large scale cycling events, such as Cambridge's Bow-Tie ride, where drivers and safety professionals could help cyclists better understand the limitations of these vehicles and how best to safely share streets with them. [Charter Right exercised by Councillor Reeves on Order Number Seventeen of Sept 9, 2013.]
Adopted

ON THE TABLE
4. Transmitting communication from Robert W. Healy, City Manager, relative to Awaiting Report Item Number 12-09, regarding a report on the use of coal and on Cambridge becoming coal-free. [City Manager Agenda Number One of Mar 5, 2012 Placed on Table on motion of Vice Mayor Simmons on Mar 5, 2012.]

5. Urge greater cooperation from the Cambridge Housing Authority to better serve the people of Cambridge. [Order Number Two of Apr 9, 2012 Placed on Table on motion of Vice Mayor Simmons on Apr 9, 2012.]

6. That the City Manager is requested to confer with the Community Development Department and other relevant departments in order to present to the City Council a map of Cambridge that shows, by location and by date, all of the areas where construction is and will be taking place over the coming decade. [Order Number Four of Apr 9, 2012 Placed on Table on motion of Councillor Toomey on Apr 9, 2012.]

7. Transmitting communication from Robert W. Healy, City Manager, relative to Awaiting Report Item No. 12-28, regarding temporary ramps and obstructions in construction zones. [City Manager Agenda Number Eight of Apr 23, 2012 Placed on Table on motion of Councillor Kelley on Apr 23, 2012.]

8. Transmitting communication from Robert W. Healy, City Manager, relative to Awaiting Report Item Number 12-35, which requests a report on whether there were any public safety officers that falsified their emergency medical training re-certification while employed by the City of Cambridge. [Charter Right exercised by Councillor Toomey on City Manager Agenda Number Two of May 21, 2012. Placed on Table on motion of Councillor Toomey on June 4, 2012.]

9. Transmitting communication from Robert W. Healy, City Manager, relative to Awaiting Report Item Number 12-63 regarding a report on safety issues at the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue and Vassar Street. [City Manager Number Twenty-three of July 30, 2012 Placed on Table on motion of Councillor Kelley on July 30, 2012.]

10. That the City Manager is requested to work together with the appropriate city officials including the City Solicitor and report back to the City Council regarding modification of the ordinance (10.12.030) that links the awarding of a one yearlong Visitor Parking Permit per household to the purchase of a $25 Cambridge Resident Parking Permit. [Charter Right exercised by Councillor Decker on Order Number Eight of Jan 28, 2013. Order Number Eight of Jan 28, 2013 Placed on Table on motion of Councillor vanBeuzekom on Feb 11, 2013.]

11. That the City Manager is requested to confer with the Director of Traffic, Parking and Transportation to determine the feasibility of implementing a pay-by-phone parking meter program in Cambridge, and report back to the City Council with recommendations as soon as possible. [Order Number Two of Mar 18, 2013 Placed on Table on motion of Councillor Kelley on Mar 18, 2013.]

12. Transmitting communication from Robert W. Healy, City Manager, relative to Awaiting Report Item Number 13-29, regarding a report on the feasibility of not allowing residents of new buildings to obtain on-street resident parking stickers. [City Manager Agenda Number Two of Apr 1, 2013 Placed on Table on motion of Councillor Kelley on Apr 1, 2013.]

APPLICATIONS AND PETITIONS
1. An application was received from Kaplan International, 39 JFK Street requesting permission for a sandwich board sign at the entrance door located on Mount Auburn Street across from the park.

2. A zoning petition has been received from Boston Properties requesting the City Council to amend the Zoning Ordinance and Map in the area included within the "Ames Street District." [Text of petition]
Referred to Ordinance Committee and Planning Board

3. An application was received from Harvard Square Business Association, requesting permission for two temporary banners across Massachusetts Avenue at City Hall and JFK Street at Mount Auburn Street announcing Oktoberfest.

COMMUNICATIONS
1. A communication was received from the family of Joseph Sullivan transmitting thanks for the Council resolution on his passing.

2. A communication was received from Marilyn Wellons, 651 Green Street regarding the task force on light pollution.

3. A communication was received from Denise Jillson, Executive Director, Harvard Square Business Association regarding newspaper boxes.

4. A communication was received from Paul Tammaro, 4 Marion Street regarding the Feast of Saint Cosmos and Damian.


5. A communication was received from James Williamson, 1000 Jackson Place transmitting an article relating to bicyclists being cited for infractions in a safety drive.

6. A communication was received from Hasson J. Rashid, 820 Massachusetts Avenue relating to the allotment of CPA funding.


RESOLUTIONS
1. Congratulations to Midori Renewables for being recognized by the Boston Business Journal for its state-of-the-art reusable substance.   Councillor Cheung

2. Congratulations to PlateJoy for being recognized as a Mass High Tech Company to follow by the Boston Business Journal.   Councillor Cheung

3. Resolution on the death of Allen J. Hayes Jr.   Councillor Toomey

4. Retirement of James Loder from the School Department.   Mayor Davis

5. Retirement of Joan Ranaghan from the School Department.   Mayor Davis

6. Retirement of Jurina Vellucci from the School Department.   Mayor Davis

7. Congratulations to Matter.io for being recognized by the Boston Business Journal for its easy-to-use 3D modeling software.   Councillor Cheung

8. Congratulations to MarketMeSuite for being recognized by the Boston Business Journal for empowering small to mid-sized businesses to engage more effectively on social media.   Councillor Cheung

9. Congratulations to Revels RiverSing on their 10th anniversary.   Mayor Davis

10. Best wishes to On The Rise on the occasion of their upcoming Prepare For Winter Dinner on Sept 26, 2013.   Vice Mayor Simmons

11. Congratulations to Ellie Lee for being a presenter at the On The Rise Prepare For Winter Dinner.   Vice Mayor Simmons

12. Congratulations to Mary-Catherine Deibel on being honored at On The Rise's Prepare for Winter Dinner.   Vice Mayor Simmons

13. Congratulations to Deborah Hughes on being honored at On The Rise's Prepare for Winter Dinner.   Vice Mayor Simmons

14. Congratulations to Jeana Franconi and her husband Mortesa on the birth of their son Cyrus.   Mayor Davis

15. Congratulations to HourlyNerd on the occasion of being recognized by the Boston Business Journal.   Councillor Cheung

16. Congratulations to Steve "Nookie" Postal on the opening of Commonwealth in Kendall Square.   Councillor Cheung

17. Congratulations to Fiona Cherbak for a successful second annual Boston Festival of Indie Games.   Councillor Cheung

18. Congratulations to Paul Marzagalli for a successful second annual Boston Festival of Indie Games.   Councillor Cheung

19. Congratulations to the Harvard Union of Clerical and Technical Workers on the occasion of their 25th Anniversary of their founding.   Councillor Cheung

20. Resolution to be prepared on the death of Joe Roberts.   Councillor Toomey

21. Best wishes and continued success to Bill de Blasio in his pursuit of Mayor for the City of New York.   Councillor Decker

22. Thanks to Nicola Williams and the organizers of the 21st Cambridge Carnival International for their successful event.   Councillor Reeves


23. Retirement of Robert Dapkas from the Cambridge Public Library.   Mayor Davis

24. Congratulations to Kristen and Frank Perullo on the birth of their son Jack Francis Perullo.   Councillor Cheung

25. Speedy recovery wishes to Chester Mitchell.   Councillor Maher

26. Resolution on the death of Maria Martins.   Councillor Maher, Councillor Toomey


ORDERS
1. That the City Manager is requested to confer with the appropriate departments as to potential locations, including Hubway stations, where posting cycling laws and etiquette would be in the public interest and feasible for the City of Cambridge.   Councillor Cheung

2. That the City Manager is requested to confer with the appropriate departments and neighboring municipalities as to potential areas for collaboration and coordinate the application process for a FY14 Community Innovation Challenge Grant.   Councillor Cheung
Referred to Finance Committee - Toomey

3. That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to work with the Election Commission to establish a Right to Vote Task Force.   Councillor Cheung and Vice Mayor Simmons
Referred to Gov't Ops. & Rules Committee - Toomey

4. That the City Manager is requested to provide an updated report of the trust fund's strategy for preserving and creating affordable housing, the status of development projects, activities, revenue and expenditures of the Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust from 2007-present.   Councillor vanBeuzekom
Referred to Housing Committee - Decker

5. That the City Manager is requested to revise the presentation of the FY15 City Budget document so that the details and costs associated with bicycle-related initiatives are presented as its own category and so that the City's bicycle-related initiatives (i.e. infrastructure improvements) can be tracked and monitored separately from auto-related initiatives.   Councillor vanBeuzekom
Substituted text referred to Finance Committee - Decker

6. That the City Manager is requested to confer with the Superintendent of Schools to evaluate the situation regarding extreme temperatures within specific classrooms within the King Open School and report back to the City Council regarding what solutions will remedy this situation.   Councillor vanBeuzekom

7. That the City Manager is requested to appoint a task force to further examine the Connolly Petition to be comprised of, but not limited to, community advocates, members of the business community, property owners and developers, Cambridge Community Development representatives and other stakeholders.   Councillor Decker
Approved as amended (Kelley - NO)


8. The CPA allocation be 70% Affordable Housing, 20% Open Space and 10% Historical Preservation.   Councillor Toomey
Order Failed 2-7-0 (Kelley, Toomey voted YES)

9. That the City Manager is requested to provide a formal report that addresses classroom overheating concerns and general input of parents and teachers, and propose a short-term plan to the City Council.   Councillor Decker
Charter Right - Davis


COMMITTEE REPORTS
1. A communication was received from Donna P. Lopez, City Clerk transmitting a report from Councillor Leland Cheung, Chair of the Cable TV Telecommunications and Public Utilities Committee for a public meeting held on Aug 15, 2013 to explore the development of an open data ordinance in the City of Cambridge.

COMMUNICATIONS AND REPORTS FROM CITY OFFICERS
1. A communication was received from Councillor Leland Cheung transmitting a copy of his remarks urging Harvard University to divest from fossil fuel companies.


MISCELLANEOUS
1. Oath of Office of Iram Farooq as Acting Deputy Director of the Community Development Department for the City of Cambridge.


HEARING SCHEDULE
Mon, Sept 16
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Sept 23
5:30pm   Roundtable/Working Meeting between the City Council and the School Committee to discuss Pre-Kindergarten and Early Childhood Education. No public comment. No votes will be taken. Meeting will not be televised.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Tues, Sept 24
6:00pm   The Civic Unity Committee will conduct a public meeting to continue discussions on lessons learned as it pertains to the Monteiro case and to discuss how to ensure that the City effectively addresses employee grievances and concerns.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Sept 30
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)
6:30pm   The City Council will conduct a public hearing to discuss the property tax rate classification.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Tues, Oct 1
2:30pm   The Finance Committee will conduct a public meeting to continue to examine the finances of various proposals for the future of the Foundry Building. This meeting to be televised.  (Sullivan Chamber)
5:30pm   The Public Safety Committee will conduct a public meeting to discuss safety associated with tour bus parking, traveling and touring through Cambridge.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Oct 7
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Thurs, Oct 10
3:00pm   Roundtable/Working Meeting for the City Council to discuss the Mike Connolly, et al. net zero zoning petition. No public comment. No votes will be taken. Meeting will not be televised.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Oct 21
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Oct 28
5:30pm   Roundtable/Working Meeting between the City Council and the School Committee to discuss the coordination and administration of after school programs and activities. No public comment. No votes will be taken. Meeting will not be televised.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Nov 4
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Nov 18
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Nov 25
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Dec 2
5:30pm   Roundtable/Working Meeting. No public comment. No votes will be taken. Meeting will not be televised.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Dec 9
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Dec 16
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Dec 23
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, Dec 30
5:30pm   City Council Meeting  (Sullivan Chamber)

TEXT OF ORDERS
O-1     Sept 16, 2013
COUNCILLOR CHEUNG
WHEREAS: In an effort to ensure the safety of Cambridge's cyclists, pedestrians and drivers, many residents throughout the City of Cambridge have expressed their desire for enhanced education and enforcement of bicycle safety; and
WHEREAS: With a growing number of City residents utilizing the Hubway bike program to traverse Cambridge, posting cycling laws and etiquette at Hubway stations has a significant potential to educate the public about biking safely and empower them to make more informed decisions on the road; now therefore be it
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to confer with the appropriate departments as to potential locations, including Hubway stations, where posting cycling laws and etiquette would be in the public interest and feasible for the City of Cambridge and report back to the City Council.

O-2     Sept 16, 2013
COUNCILLOR CHEUNG
WHEREAS: Governor Deval Patrick and Secretary of Administration and Finance Glen Shor recently announced the third round of Community Innovation Challenge grants, totaling $4 million, to help support local government regionalization projects and other initiatives designed to deliver services more effectively and efficiently; and
WHEREAS: Specifically, Community Innovation Challenge grants provide financial support for one-time or transition costs related to innovative regionalization and other efficiency initiatives, including facilities management, public safety, public health, information technology, transportation, library services, veterans' services, public works, housing, and education and environmental protection; and
WHEREAS: The grants provide municipalities with the resources to collaborate on shared initiatives, ultimately reducing in reduced costs and heightened quality of life in the region; and
WHEREAS: Grant applications will be accepted from Sept 10, 2013 through Nov 22; 2013; and
WHEREAS: The Community Innovation Challenge grants would be an excellent opportunity for the City of Cambridge to collaborate with surrounding municipalities to increase affordable housing options, work with regional partners to develop an open data standard, or to identify a coordinated and cohesive strategy to end homelessness; now therefore be it
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to confer with the appropriate departments and neighboring municipalities as to potential areas for collaboration and coordinate the application process for a FY14 Community Innovation Challenge Grant and report back to the City Council.

O-3     Sept 16, 2013
COUNCILLOR CHEUNG
VICE MAYOR SIMMONS
WHEREAS: Political participation, especially in the form of voting, is essential to a healthy and robust democracy; and
WHEREAS: A recent report ranked Massachusetts 48th in the country for voting access and participation; and
WHEREAS: There have been a number of conversations, City Council orders, and community discussions over the past year focusing upon how to increase voter turnout and participation, how to increase civic engagement, and how to entice greater numbers of Cambridge residents into adding their voices to the discussions and activities that impact the entire community; and
WHEREAS: In order to maintain the City of Cambridge's proud tradition of civic and community activism, it is essential for the City to regularly review its efforts to increase participation in and access to the democratic process; now therefore be it
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to work with the Election Commission to establish a Right to Vote Task Force, which will:
1. Review all local laws and practices that may affect the right to vote;
2. Review and recommend changes at the local level to uphold voting rights and increase voter participation, including working to reduce wait times at polling locations, procedures for dealing with voter registration errors uncovered on Election Day, and ensuring that in all instances, elderly and disabled voters have full access to their polling location;
3. Review all current practices and procedures for addressing, reporting, and resolving real-time issues that may occur on Election Day, recommending any changes that will ensure all Election Day issues can be resolved in a manner that allows all those wishing to cast their vote with the opportunity to do so;
4. Review the current chain-of-command for reporting any Election Day issues that might prevent people from being able to cast their vote to ensure that this system is adequate to resolve these issues in real-time;
5. Develop plans and take action to register new residents to vote and make recommendations to the Council on any policies or actions needed to strengthen these efforts; and
6. Develop plans for a voter registration program designed to register eligible high school students; and be it further
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to obtain both interim and final reports from the Right to Vote Task Force with recommendations that will be presented to the City Council.

O-4     Sept 16, 2013
COUNCILLOR VANBEUZEKOM
WHEREAS: It is a goal of the Cambridge City Council to preserve and create affordable housing across the City for low, moderate and middle-income residents and their families; and
WHEREAS: The Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust was established by the City Council in 1988, with the express purpose of assisting in the creation and preservation of affordable housing in the city of Cambridge for the benefit of low and moderate income households; and
WHEREAS: The last published Trust Report (2006) detailed the trust fund's strategy for preserving and creating affordable housing, the status of development projects, activities, and expenditures of the Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust throughout the 1989 - 2006 time period; now therefore be it
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to provide an updated report of the trust fund's strategy for preserving and creating affordable housing, the status of development projects, activities, revenue and expenditures of the Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust (2007-Present); and be it further
ORDERED: That this report include a detailed reporting of Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust funds income sources and expenditures during the time period 2007 to present; and be it further
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to report back to the City Council on this matter.

O-5     Sept 16, 2013  Amended
COUNCILLOR VANBEUZEKOM
WHEREAS: It is a goal of the Cambridge City Council to evaluate City expenditures with a view of maintaining a strong fiscal position and awareness of the impact on taxpayers while providing a clear picture of specific categories of expenditures; and
WHEREAS: The City budget document displays both program information and detailed data relating to many initiatives within the city; and
WHEREAS: The last published FY14 City Budget presented the information and costs associated with bicycle-related initiatives across the Community Development Department , Department of Public Works and the Traffic, Parking and Transportation Department sections of the budget; now therefore be it
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to revise the presentation of the FY15 City Budget document so that the details and costs associated with bicycle-related initiatives are presented as its own category and so that the City's bicycle-related initiatives (i.e. infrastructure improvements) can be tracked and monitored separately from auto-related initiatives; and be it further
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to revise the presentation of the FY15 City Budget document so that the details and costs associated with bicycle-related initiatives and public-transportation related initiatives are presented in two unique categories so these initiatives and infrastructure improvements can be tracked and monitored separately from auto-related initiatives; and be it further
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to report back to the City Council on this matter appeal.

O-6     Sept 16, 2013
COUNCILLOR VANBEUZEKOM
WHEREAS: Parents and educators have repeatedly expressed concerns regarding extreme temperatures within specific classrooms within the King Open School without a suitable resolution; now therefore be it
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to confer with the Superintendent of Schools to evaluate the situation regarding extreme temperatures within specific classrooms within the King Open School and report back to the City Council regarding what solutions will remedy this situation.

O-7     Sept 16, 2013  Amended
COUNCILLOR DECKER
WHEREAS: Climate protection and reducing our carbon footprint has been a high priority for the City of Cambridge; and
WHEREAS: The City of Cambridge has been recognized as a national leader in our efforts to become a greener city and a model for other communities; and
WHEREAS: The Connolly Petition presents an innovative framework for achieving "net zero" greenhouse gas emissions by requiring periodic reporting of energy usage and promoting on-site production of renewable energy, greater building efficiency measures, and the purchase of off-site renewable energy alternatives; and
WHEREAS: The Connolly Petition has facilitated much constructive dialogue across sectors and presents an opportunity and a tool to continue to move our community forward and further in our commitment to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels; and
WHEREAS: Many of the residents supportive of the petition have been key driving agents in helping to shape greener policies in the City of Cambridge; and
WHEREAS: The Connolly Petition and the concept of net zero greenhouse gas emissions has received support from the Massachusetts Sierra Club, Green Cambridge, the Cambridge-node of 350MA.org, Harvard University's chapter of Students for a Just and Stable Future, the Association of Cambridge Neighborhoods, the Cambridge Residents Alliance, and hundreds of Cambridge residents, including a number of elected officials; and
WHEREAS: The Mayor has scheduled a Roundtable/Working meeting for the City Council to discuss the Connolly Petition further on Oct 10, 2013 at 3:00pm in the Sullivan Chamber; and
WHEREAS: The development of a task force allows us to continue building on the important work of the City and the strong foundation and grassroots organizing of the petitioners; now therefore be it
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to appoint a task force to further examine the Connolly Petition to be comprised of, but not limited to, community advocates, members of the business community, property owners and developers, Cambridge Community Development and School Department representatives and other stakeholders; and be it further
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to report back to the City Council with a list of task force members, as well as a schedule outlining when the task force will be formally initiated and when the task force will present their findings and conclusions to the City Council; and be it further
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby requested to report back to the City Council on this matter after all meetings have been held in October.


O-8     Sept 16, 2013  Failed 2-7-0 (Kelley, Toomey voted YES)
COUNCILLOR TOOMEY
ORDERED: That the CPA allocation be as follows: 70% Affordable Housing, 20% Open Space, 10% Historical Preservation

O-9     Sept 16, 2013  Charter Right - Davis
COUNCILLOR DECKER
WHEREAS: It is requested that a formal report be conducted to address overheated classrooms in the City of Cambridge that address the following questions:

WHEREAS: Unpredictable ad/hoc transitions to offsite temporary classrooms (i.e. Youth Centers) are fraught with their own challenges and disruptions to both students and teachers; now therefore be it
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to provide a formal report that addresses these questions as well as the concerns and general input of parents and teachers, and propose a short-term plan to the City Council; and be it further
ORDERED: That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to report back to the City Council and School Committee regarding this request.


TEXT OF COMMITTEE REPORTS
Committee Report #1
CABLE TV, TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMITTEE

MEETING PURPOSE
To explore the development of an open data ordinance in the City of Cambridge.

MEETING DETAILS
Date and Time: Aug 15, 2013 at 3:20pm
Location: Cambridge Innovation Center, One Broadway, Havana Room, 5th Floor

ATTENDEES
Councillor Leland Cheung, Chair; Councillor Minka vanBeuzekom; Lisa Peterson, Deputy City Manager; Vali Buland, Assistant City Solicitor; Sam Aylesworth, Assistant City Solicitor; Mary Hart, Chief Information Officer, Information Technology Department (ITD); Mike Dugas, Deputy Director, ITD; Jeff Amero, GIS Project Manager, ITD; Scott Hamilton, MIS Project Manager, ITD; Rebecca Fuentes, Assistant Commissioner for Administration, Public Works; Pardis Saffari, Associate Planner, Economic Division, Community Development Department; Martha Flynn, Assistant Commissioner, Inspectional Services Department; Rebecca Rutenberg; and Donna P. Lopez, City Clerk.

OTHER ATTENDEES
Paul Tammaro, Nick Doiron, Curt Savoie, John Hawkinson, Saul Tannenbaum, Nadeem Mazen, Andrew Vitvilsly and Dazza Greenwood.

MINUTES
Councillor Cheung convened the meeting and stated the purpose. To begin the meeting, he wanted to hear any comments that the public might have about the most recent draft of the Open Data Ordinance (ATTACHMENT A). Following comment from the public, the City Administration will be able to provide their comments. He opened the floor for comments.

Paul Tammaro stated that he could not comment on the ordinance because he needed to read it. Subsequent to the meeting Mr. Tammaro submitted his comments (ATTACHMENT B).

Nick Doiron stated that the updated draft looks great.

John Hawkinson asked for clarification as to which of the draft ordinances is the most recent and to which they should be referring. Ms. Rutenberg explained that the 8/14/13 draft of the Open Draft Ordinance is the updated draft, and that the other draft provided was the initial ordinance prior to any editing (ATTACHMENT C). Mr. Hawkinson asked Councillor Cheung the process of editing and submitting the ordinance going forward. Councillor Cheung stated that this meeting is to assess the progress that has been made in the development of the ordinance and if another meeting is needed it will be held.

Saul Tannenbaum stated that the ordinance as written does not clearly establish a policy for open data going forward. The Open Data Review Board should not just be City staff, which needs to be included in the ordinance. The procurement section is weak, but could be strengthened by inserting system requirements that incentivize open systems throughout the procurement process and allow the City to spend slightly more to purchase software that allows for compliance with the ordinance. He understands the intent of protected data, but the definition needs fine tuning. For instance, listing protected data that is stored on a City-owned personal computing device could unintentionally serve as a "safe haven" for data that will not ultimately be released to the public.

Nadeem Mazen stated that thorough language and policy implementation is important. The implementation will be challenging and should be transparent. He wanted the Open Data Review Board to be comprised of elected officials, appointed members and volunteer technologists to keep the ordinance moving forward quickly.

Mr. Hawkinson stated that the definition of CSV should be comma separated value instead of character separated value. Councillor Cheung noted that the draft ordinance has been reviewed by the City Solicitor. Mr. Hawkinson stated that definition E of "Machine Readable" has the potential to exclude certain types of data. He asked why narrative text and meeting minutes were excluded. It is important for narrative data to be made available for research. Mr. Hawkinson stated that a narrative is embedded in the documents. Mr. Tannenbaum stated that narrative was accessible by a public records request. He questioned whether all police reports would be accessible on line or through a public records request. Mr. Mazen stated that he wanted the narrative in and clarified as a data type.

Mr. Hawkinson stated that under the definition of protected data (G.2), the ordinance should explicitly determine what a significant amount of data is. He commented that G.4 under the definition of protected data could be construed, although it was not the intent to have this data protected. He further commented on the definition of machine readable, noting that APIs are great, but we should not require them over flat data. Machine readable does not mean API. He suggested a structured format; this should not be requirement. A PDF of structured data is discouraged.

Mr. Tannenbaum suggested a better definition for machine readable and noted that PDF files of other structured data should be discouraged. He stated that as the City implements online services, they should be accessible except for protected data.

Curt Savoie stated that APIs are good for transactional data. This is an implementation discussion based on the data set to review the value.

Councillor Cheung stated that the Open Data Review Board would review the data.

Mr. Tannenbaum stated that it should be tested that if it poses a financial or administrative burden on the City to have a particular data set accessible, it should be balanced with the public interest. This is not in the ordinance. Mr. Hawkinson stated that 950 CMR32 should be referenced in definition F under Massachusetts Public Records law which is more helpful.

Councillor Cheung stated that he appreciated the comments and that the City is headed in the right direction. Cambridge does not have the same scale and financial situation as Boston and San Francisco do. He noted the importance of remembering that this is not a transparency ordinance; it is an open data ordinance. This is data that can be used by community. He asked for comments from the City Administration and staff.

Deputy City Manager Lisa Peterson stated that this has been reviewed and discussed to better understand open data and to try to achieve the goal. Boston's approach without an ordinance is practical, reassuring and presented a level of comfort, but there are privacy concerns. There are different data sets that can be released in a short period of time. The City's approach is to have a standard and policy in place. Having a title and purpose section is what the Open Data Review Board will use to evaluate the implementation process going forward. The legal policy was added and it is important. Looking at the procurement piece, it is important to remember that there are things the City purchases that do not make sense to include open data as a purchase consideration. . Mr. Tannenbaum added that words like "shall" and "relevant" need to be in the ordinance. Mr. Tannenbaum stated that his ordinance draft of the open data review look at relevant open data.

Mr. Savoie stated that the issue of procurement is something that the City of Boston is grappling with, specifically in the realm of software procurement when a third party owns the data. He stated that contract language should be include outlining who owns the software, especially when the vendor changes. The City needs to maintain rights over the data. Mr. Hazen spoke about software identification by API. He favored that the data ownership should be the City. He spoke about corporate ownership of open data. Mr. Hawkinson stated that "services" should be drafted.

Councillor Cheung commented that more work needs to be done on the ordinance.

Ms. Hart stated that since the last meeting, the ITD has released 111 data sets. The City is looking at other data sets to figure out challenges and potential solutions. They have released these on a GitHub website. She asked Jeff Amero to provide additional information.

Jeff Amero stated that the main page for the GitHub is http://cocdata.github.io/. There are links to the GIS datasets, and this is where future data sets will be posted. There are over 100 GIS layers on the current site. He gave the GIS page address as http://cambridgegis.github.io/gisdata.html. Ms. Hart stated that data for Cambridge was current data and in a clean foresight. The files were converted to GeoJSON. Ms. Peterson stated that a place is needed on the City's website to look at the data and questioned what the site will be. Mr. Hawkinson commented do what is easiest for the City, and then add more later. This should not be overly burdensome. Councillor vanBeuzekom asked if the Egov Committee should oversee this. Ms. Peterson responded that the ordinance requires that there be an Open Data Review Board appointed by the City Manager. An interim Data Review Board is being looked at by the Egov Committee.

Councillor Cheung stated that the procurement comment is a good one. The goal is to get this through the City Council. If it costs a lot of money to implement an ordinance, it is difficult to get the ordinance passed. The City is heading toward more openness. This will be an educational conversation for the City Council.

Councillor Cheung commented on having a resident volunteer on the Open Data Review Board. Ms. Peterson stated that City Manager Rossi would be fine with this.

Dazza Greenwood stated that for a board to include a non-city representative is a good opportunity to think about people in the field who would give good feedback. Think about other cities and states where there is insufficient cooperation across governments. This would be a good win. Ms. Peterson stated that the city participates in regional committees. She stated that there could be a governmental representative, but it is not generally done. She agrees with the collaboration, but it is more educational. A smaller group for the board may be better.

Mr. Hawkinson asked if there is a rule about appointing Cambridge residents verses non-residents. Mr. Tannenbaum responded that the City ordinance is very general on appointments on boards and commissions appointed by the City Manager.

On protected database location, Councillor Cheung asked if there were any thoughts on G4 of protected data. Ms. Rutenberg stated that this was in ordinances passed by other cities. This will be given more consideration. Mr. Greenwood suggested another pass on the ordinance to tighten the language. He stated that what is missing is how the term protected tracks back to the other parts of the ordinance through procurement and vendors. Should there be a category of not totally open? Mr. Tannenbaum stated that this is a confidence builder, but the language needs work. Mr. Greenwood stated that this is awesome. Ms. Peterson acknowledged that there are entities in the City that may give more specificity based on cases. Mr. Savoie stated that this is why representatives from the City's legal department should be on the board.

Mr. Tannenbaum stated that it does not state that the purpose of the ordinance is that the data be open; this is not specific in the ordinance. He suggested language that it is the policy that data be open, except protected. Mr. Hawkinson stated that it should be more clearly defined. Mr. Tannenbaum stated that his draft stated it shall be the policy of the City to have open data. Ms. Peterson stated that Section 2.126.030 is entitled Open Data Accessibility. Mr. Tannenbaum suggested using words from the federal language.

Mr. Hawkinson asked relating to scanned copies of original documents - why is the prohibition there. Councillor Cheung stated that this will be clarified; we are trying to get away from PDFs. He questioned if there was discussion with other states as to what they enacted.

Councillor Cheung stated that the suggestions would be incorporated in the next draft of the ordinance and that the text would be circulated.

The next meeting will be held in early September.

Councillor Cheung thanked all attendees.

ADJOURNMENT
On motion of Councillor Cheung the meeting adjourned at 4:30pm.

For the Committee,
Councillor Leland Cheung, Chair


AWAITING REPORT LIST
13-02. Report from the City Manager:
RE: explore the potential for a community local composting initiative.
Councillor Cheung 07/29/13 (O-4)

13-03. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on including a participatory budgeting portion in the 2015 budget.
Councillor Cheung 07/29/13 (O-5)

13-04. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on the feasibility of utilizing pylons as a means through which to separate cyclists from motor vehicles.
Councillor Cheung 07/29/13 (O-6)

13-06. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on the feasibility of ensuring all City-sponsored committee meeting minutes are available online.
Councillor Cheung 07/29/13 (O-8)

13-08. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on improving pedestrian safety at the intersection of Mass Ave and Upland Rd and the number of tickets issued for "blocking the box".
Councillor Cheung 07/29/13 (O-12)

13-09. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on traffic, licensing and zoning violation concerns of the residents of Bowdoin Street.
Councillor Cheung 07/29/13 (O-13)

13-11. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on efforts to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of current detours and traffic plans during significant construction projects that are impacting traffic through out the City.
Councillor Toomey 07/29/13 (O-15)

13-13. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on the feasibility of establishing a open door while air conditioning prohibition.
Councillor vanBeuzekom 07/29/13 (O-19)

13-16. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on ways to improve effective communications with members of the community including the use of closed captioning.
Councillor Cheung 09/09/13 (O-1)

13-17. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on revising bicycle signs to more accurately reflect cyclists rights to the road.
Councillor Kelley 09/09/13 (O-7)

13-18. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on adjusting newsbox placement to ensure the general publicís access to the sidewalk is not unreasonably hindered by them.
Councillor Kelley 09/09/13 (O-8)

13-19. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on how the City plans to manage tree grates.
Councillor Kelley 09/09/13 (O-11)

13-20. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on traffic accident statistics for the intersection of Cardinal Medeiros Ave, Warren Street and Cambridge Street.
Councillor Toomey 09/09/13 (O-12)

13-21. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on the feasibility of establishing an emergency City telephone hotline that residents can contact in times of emergency for timely and accurate information.
Vice Mayor Simmons 09/09/13 (O-13)

13-22. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on safety issues at the intersection of Cedar St. and Mass Ave.
Councillor Kelley 09/09/13 (O-14)

13-23. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on the reasons that the trees on Scott Street were damaged.
Councillor Kelley 09/09/13 (O-15)

13-24. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on the usefulness of an "Open Right" campaign to prevent "dooring" to cyclists.
Councillor Kelley 09/09/13 (O-18)

13-25. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on evaluating the use of green colored pavement within bike lanes along major roadways and intersections.
Councillor vanBeuzekom 09/09/13 (O-24)

13-26. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on reviewing the policy relating to the sale of goods within the public ways.
Councillor Cheung 09/09/13 (O-27)

13-27. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on steps needed to do a Nexus Study and whether there is a way tp expand who and what is covered by linkage, whether there is potential for additional revenue for community benefits from linkage, specifically if linkage was increased and the amount changed for housing could the difference be used for community benefits.
Councillor Maher 09/09/13 (O-33)

13-28. Report from the City Manager:
RE: report on rationale and thought process of the proposed increase of liquor fees prior to the change taking effect.
Councillor Cheung 07/29/13 (O-20)