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Attend meetings on reparations, name changes, police technology and aging elementary schools

Oak trees on the future construction site of the Tobin Montessori and Vassal Lane Upper School. (Photo: Public Planting Committee)

Reparations, name changes and school projects

City council, 5:30 p.m. Monday. The council dives into that Idea of reparation, investigate taking a percentage of the revenue from local cannabis sales and distributing it to black-owned companies in general and “economic empowerment” entries in the cannabis industry in particular. Author E. Denise Simmons and co-sponsor Patty Nolan hope for an answer on the feasibility of the idea by October 4th.

There is also a report on a potential Name change for the Agassiz district, sums up 16 months of discussions with the news that the idea is popular, as is the idea of Honor of the educator Maria Baldwin when renaming. The city manager plans to appoint a task force to deal with this Renaming of the library branch Central Square Baldwin also honored – as The Maria Baldwin and Rep. John Lewis Library and Center for African American / Black History and Culture. In the meantime, the city council asks the manager to consult an expert Building above the Central Square Library and his parking garage, and how such a project can be funded.

The city manager wants $ 1 million for elementary school evaluation for how much they are in need of renovation and how much larger they could possibly make room for the increasing schooling. There is a request for an ongoing project at Tobin Montessori and Vassal Lane Upper School Save some of the 94 trees Contractors expect them to take out (out of 124 total), including three healthy old oak trees that aren’t even included in the planned building’s footprint.

The council is taking steps on two things that may go to state lawmakers for petitions on house rules: a Real estate transfer fee to end affordable housing – like the one that the city council had unsuccessfully applied for from the city council in 2016, 2019 and 2020 – for properties that are changing hands “Not less” than $ 1 million; and vanishingly small Changes in city law Request for approval of appointments to boards and commissions, annual city manager reviews, and comprehensive reviews of the statutes every 10 years starting next year. Both are chaired by the regulation committee; the amendments to the statutes will be proposed for the local elections on November 2nd.

Speaking of the legal department too busy to obey 2016 council orders, the city manager wants another $ 280,000 to pay for its “unexpected cost hikes” even though the council has just fallen $ 450,000 less than seven months ago for the same reason. The councilors have never asked themselves whether wrongly set priorities contribute to overruns in the fully budgeted department, because in a city as rich as Cambridge the department can do what it wants and later be saved.

Televised and viewed via zoom videoconference.


Police surveillance technology that worries bourgeois liberalists

Public Security Committee, Tuesday 3pm to 5pm. This committee, chaired by Alderman Quinton Zondervan, deals with different articles in connection with the city’s surveillance technology ordinance, including shot detection data from ShotSpotter; the Boston Regional Intelligence Center with nine parishes, a somewhat mysterious organization run by the Boston Police Department; and Coplink, a database system that raised concern in 2018 because it enabled the inclusion of people who have never committed a crime. Televised and viewed via Zoom videoconferencing.


“MassAve4” report on bike paths and parking on the street

Transport and Public Utilities Committee, Wednesday 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. This committee, chaired by City Councilor Jivan Sobrinho-Wheeler, will work with the MassAve4 Report on the block-by-block impact of installing rapidly built separate bike paths on four segments of Massachusetts Avenue. Some are about the possible – if unlikely – Loss of parking space on the street that seems to be suggested by the report. Televised and viewed via Zoom videoconferencing.


Housing authority changes to units of ‘Putnam School’

Board of Appeal for Zoning, 6.30 p.m. to 11.30 p.m. Thursday. The Cambridge Housing Authority is requesting changes to their 86 Otis-Str., East Cambridge, building known as Putnam School. Nine communal units would become seven one-bedroom units and one two-bedroom unit. “Unproductive” common room would be converted into a couple of one-bedroom units and used to expand a one-bedroom unit into a two-bedroom unit, while expanding a basement common room at the same time. Viewable via zoom video conference.

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