Cambridge InsideOut - March 15, 2016
Under the guidance of Coach Lance Dottin, Cambridge defeated Lowell on March 12 by a score of 54-38 to win the Division 1 North Championship.
Last night (March 14) at the Boston Garden, the Falcons won over Catholic Memorial in the semifinals by a score of 77-73 in a close game where the lead change many times and which was tied 73-73 with 1:28 left to play.
Here are some photos from the victory over Lowell taken by Samara Vise:
Fred Fantini, Steve Buckley, Richard Harding at Semifinals (Boston Garden)
City Manager Richard Rossi to Retire
Cambridge, MA, March 11, 2016 -- Today, Cambridge City Manager Richard C. Rossi issued the following statement to the City Council’s Government Operations, Rules & Claims Committee:
“After lengthy discussions with my family, I have decided not to seek an extension of my contract as Cambridge City Manager.
This has been a very difficult decision for me. I want to thank the City Council for the opportunity to lead this incredible City, about which I care very deeply. Your faith in me and your support over the last three years have been greatly appreciated and it has been a true honor and privilege for me to serve as City Manager.
For the past 45 years, I have worked to improve our community and I have enjoyed every minute of it. As someone who grew up and went to public school in Cambridge, I am so proud that I have been able to play a role in helping my city – our city -- become the great City that it is today. Of course it has been challenging at times, but the work of the last three years has been rewarding, and I believe that we have made positive steps towards shaping the future for both residents and businesses.
As I begin preparing to leave, I want you to know that I am extremely proud of our employees, in particular, the strong leadership of our Department Heads and their teams. Since my appointment as City Manager, one of my priorities was to ensure that when I retired, each department would have a strong leadership team that was well prepared to be an asset to my replacement. Our next City Manager will inherit a workforce that is highly professional and committed to working hard to achieve the City’s goals.
Although my contract calls for my departure on June 30, 2016, I recognize the importance of an orderly transition. If the Council desires, I would be amenable to offering my services as needed this summer to assist during the transition or to continue in some fashion until you have selected my successor.
As I mentioned, I did not come to this decision lightly and it is one of the hardest that I have ever had to make. I appreciate those of you who have taken the time to encourage me to think about my future with the City.
Finally, I want to acknowledge the support and effort that my staff has demonstrated over the past three years. It has been extraordinary. Our accomplishments as a team are too numerous to list today. I strongly believe that we have built a critical foundation for the City that will ensure that Cambridge remains a vibrant and desirable place to live, work, and play well into the future.
Because of the dedication of the staff and City Council, I have every confidence that Cambridge will be able to address any challenge it may face in the future. My heartfelt thanks to all of you for trusting me with the honor of being City Manager.”
Mr. Rossi, during his 45 year tenure with the City of Cambridge, has served in numerous capacities including, Purchasing Agent, Acting Commissioner of Public Works, Acting Director of the Water Department, and, for 32 years, Deputy City Manager. Mr. Rossi has served as City Manager since July 2013.
During his tenure, he has focused on building a core leadership team and creating bold initiatives focused on sustainability efforts, economic development, early childhood and STEAM education, fiscal management – including maintaining the City’s three AAA bond ratings, affordable housing, and strengthening Cambridge’s ongoing commitment to our diverse population. Additionally, Mr. Rossi has worked to forge collaborative relationships with residents, business and community groups. These efforts contribute to Cambridge being one of the best Cities in which to live, work, innovate, and play.
Under the Cambridge City Charter, the City Council is charged with selecting and appointing the City Manager.
On Monday, March 14, 2016, City Manager Richard C. Rossi signed an Executive Order establishing certification requirements for vendors bidding on City contracts. The measure seeks to prevent wage theft, which is the improper withholding of payment from employees and the failure to pay employees according to required schedules. Wage theft most often involves employers paying less than the minimum, contracted, or prevailing wage, not paying for all hours worked, and not paying overtime for hours exceeding 40 per week, but wage theft can take many forms—employers may never send the final paycheck, or may misclassify workers as independent contractors.
“This Executive Order is a clear indication of Cambridge’s continuing commitment to wage justice,” said City Manager Richard C. Rossi. “The provisions put into effect today provide the City the protections that are needed to ensure that we are dealing with quality contractors. We have created a simple and fair process for both the City and for our contractors.”
Under the Executive Order vendors bidding on City contracts will be required to certify their compliance with federal and state wage law with the City, and if the vendors have previous violations, disclose them, and provide a wage bond for the duration of the contract. These measures strengthen the City’s ability to hire vendors that treat their employees fairly.
Labor advocates from the Greater Boston Labor Council and Community Labor United worked with City leaders to bring this issue forward. “Cambridge is taking great leadership for workers’ rights,” said Darlene Lombos, Executive Director of Community Labor United and Vice President of the Greater Boston Labor Council. “By taking this action, the City of Cambridge is sending a clear message to all employers: wage theft in Cambridge will not be tolerated. We applaud the leaders of this city for doing what is right for workers.”
The Executive Order also prohibits City departments from contracting with debarred vendors for the period of their debarment. This will help to ensure that City resources are not used to support those vendors debarred for wage law violations.
The Executive Order is effective for all contracts resulting from requests for proposals or invitation for bids that become publically available on or after March 14, 2016. Cambridge joins the City of Boston in requiring this type of certification and wage bond.
Photo: Arthur Goldberg, Deputy City Solicitor for the City of Cambridge; Amy Witts, Purchasing Agent for the City of Cambridge;
Lindsay McCluskey, Organizer for Greater Boston Labor Council, and
Darlene Lombos, Executive Director of Community Labor United and Vice President of the Greater Boston Labor Council
and, of course, Cambridge City Manager Richard C. Rossi
March 14, 2016 – The Cambridge Office of Workforce Development is sponsoring a free Health & Human Services Job Fair Wednesday, March 30, from 11:00am – 1:00pm, at Central Square Library, 45 Pearl Street, Cambridge. Take the MBTA Red Line or #1 Bus to Central Square.
Prospective job applicants are urged to research companies in advance and apply for positions online.
Participating organizations include:
Metropolitan Boston Housing Partnership
Riverside Community Care
Fenway Health & AIDS Action Committee
Perkins School for the Blind
Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health
The Edinburg Center
Spaulding Hospital / Cambridge
Cambridge Health Alliance
Always Here Home Care
Franciscan Hospital for Children
United South End Settlements
For more information, call 617-349-6259 or email Josh Foley at email@example.com.
The Special State Primary will be held on Tuesday, April 12, 2016 ONLY in Wards/Precincts 2-2, 2-3, 4-1, 4-3, 5-1, 5-2 & 5-3 for the office of State Senator for Massachusetts First Suffolk & Middlesex Senate District to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Senator Anthony Petruccelli. For Cambridge residents not already registered, the last day to register to vote for the election is Wednesday, March 23, 2016 until 8 p.m. The polls will be open on Election Day from 7:00am until 8:00pm.
If you are a voter in Wards/Precincts 2-2, 2-3, 4-1, 4-3, 5-1, 5-2 & 5-3, please contact the Cambridge Election Commission office to find out when the Absentee Ballots will be available for the Special State Primary. Any voter who is unable to go to the polls on Election Day due to physical disability, religious belief, or absence from the City may request an Absentee Ballot from the Commission. The deadline to apply for an Absentee Ballot is Monday, April 11, 2016 at noon. Absentee Ballots may be mailed to voters, or such voters may choose to vote at the Commission office during regular city office hours: Monday, 8:30 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.; Tuesday – Thursday, 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Friday, 8:30 a.m. – Noon. The office will also be open for Absentee Voting on Friday, April 8th until 5:00 p.m.
For any additional information, please visit the Cambridge Election Commission office at 51 Inman Street, call (617-349-4361) or visit our website at www.cambridgema.gov/election.
Cambridge Residents Encouraged to Bring Reusable Bags when Shopping
Bring Your Own Bag Ordinance goes into effect on March 31, 2016
CAMBRIDGE, MA – March 14, 2016 – The City of Cambridge seeks to reduce the number of plastic and paper bags being used, discarded, littered, burned, and buried. The Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) Ordinance, effective March 31, 2016, encourages the use of reusable bags at all retail establishments in Cambridge.
The purpose of the Ordinance is to reduce the use of disposable checkout bags by retail establishments to protect the marine environment, advance solid waste reduction, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and protect waterways. The Ordinance seeks to promote the use of reusable checkout bags. Residents may donate reusable bags at City Hall, Public Works, or the North Cambridge Senior Center as part of DPW’s Reusable Bag Drive to help low income and elderly residents receive bags. Bags exempt from the Ordinance include produce bags, laundry, dry-cleaner and newspaper bags, and bags used to wrap meat or frozen foods.
“This ordinance is important not only from the perspective of reducing damaging materials being discharged into our rivers and oceans,” said Cambridge Public Works Commissioner Owen O’Riordan, “but we also hope it will be successful in changing people’s behavior to help improve the cleanliness of our streets and sidewalks and reduce the amount of waste in landfills.”
Cambridge businesses will no longer be able to provide single-use plastic bags, but may offer paper, reusable, or compostable bags to customers at a minimum cost of $0.10 per bag. Businesses must show this as the “Checkout Bag Charge” on the receipt and collect sales tax on each bag.
To avoid this charge, customers are encouraged to bring their own bag when they go shopping, out for food, to the pharmacy, and more.
Cambridge Public Works is continuing with successful outreach to businesses to inform and prepare them for the ordinance. Many businesses are excited to implement this ordinance to help the City with its waste reduction goals.
Learn more about the BYOB Ordinance and find helpful information for businesses and residents at www.CambridgeMA.gov/BYOB.
Cambridge Dog License Applications and Renewals Now Available Online
Cambridge, MA, March 14, 2016 – Cambridge residents can now apply for or renew their dog’s license online. State law requires that all dogs over 6 months have a current dog license. The dog license period in Cambridge runs from April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017. The fee for a dog license for a spayed/neutered dog is $10, or $30 for a dog that is not spayed or neutered. Dog licenses are renewed annually. The fine for an unlicensed dog is $50. For more information visit, www.cambridgema.gov/doglicense.
In order to obtain a dog license, owners must have a current rabies vaccination. Dogs can be vaccinated at the veterinarian’s office, at clinics held at some pet stores, or low cost clinics held periodically. The next Rabies Vaccination Clinic in Cambridge will be held Saturday, Apr. 2, from 9-11 a.m., at the Cambridge Department of Public Works. The fee is $15 per dog. Microchipping is also available for $20.
Dog licenses can be a ticket home if your dog is lost since the number on the tag can be traced back to the owner to hopefully help for a safe return. Microchipping can also provide added protection.
As with most municipalities, there is a leash law in the City of Cambridge that requires dogs to be on a leash at all times when off the owner’s property. Over the past several years the City of Cambridge has been continually working with residents to explore strategies for dogs to be off leash in city parks and open spaces. There are three approaches taken by the city to meet the demand for off leash space: dedicated off leash areas, shared use off leash areas, and shared use hours. For a list of areas, visit www.cambridgema.gov/offleash.
In these off leash areas, dog owners must adhere to certain important regulations. The dog must be under voice control and within sight of the owner/keeper at all times when off leash and the dog must have a current Cambridge Dog License. There are other regulations and it is the responsibility of the person with the dog to be aware of these posted regulations. Additionally, either off leash or on leash, an owner/keeper must carry means for disposal to pick up and dispose of any feces left by the dog. The City of Cambridge does supply dog waste bags in some areas, but the responsibility to have a means of disposal is entirely on the owner/keeper.
Draft revisions to the Planning Board Rules and CDD Community Engagement Guidelines
The materials are available on the web and are scheduled to be discussed at the Planning Board meeting on March 22.
I've posted an article on CCTV about the presentations of the seven candidates for State Senate at the March 8 meeting at the library. -- Mary Holbrow
Magazine Beach Goes to the State House
Local Political Rumblings – State Representatives and State Senators (March 2016)
Sidewalk Poetry Returns to Cambridge!
Are You As Smart As A CRLS Student?
Current City of Cambridge Board and Commission Vacancies (Feb 27, 2016)
Presidential Preference and State Committee Results (PDF files):
Ward Committee Results (PDF files):
By Ward and Precinct