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Meet Democratic Candidates

The Barrington Democratic Town Committee and Grapes & Grains liquor store will host a "Meet the Candidates' event at 5 pm.

Democratic politics and fine wine will mix today, Sept. 9, in Barrington.

A "Meet the Candidates" night is being hosted by the Democratic Town Committee at Grapes & Grains liquor store, 24 Bosworth St. It runs from 5 to 7 pm. Everyone is welcome.

The event will include an informal wine tasting and reception, said Mary Alyce Gasbarro, chair of the Barrington Democratic Town Committee

“Grapes and Grains will provide a variety of new and interesting wines for your sampling,” she said, “while local candidates for Town Council, School Committee and Town Moderator, along with candidates for State Representative in Districts 66 and 67 will answer your questions.”

“Come out to support your favorite candidates, learn more about the issues in this important election year, and support one of our newest local businesses,” said Gasbarro.

Manifold Witness September 09, 2012 at 12:31 PM
An example for the kiddies? “Everyone is welcome”? To “come and show support”? For the drinking Dems? At the favorite liquor store? Shall we bring the kiddies to meet the candidates? What about the 18, 19, 20 year-olds? They can vote. Shall we bring them to the liquor store owned by the guy who just resigned from the Barrington Housing Board of Trustees (that’s one of the affordable housing boards that didn’t do their job- they didn’t even have their own regulations in place like they were supposed to, so never mind properly evaluating anything else)? To show them how it’s done? But, not to worry, he resigned with “King Regards*” now that he got his liquor license & his “adopted” spot to hang out his shingle. Shall we bring the kiddies to show them how the Dems roll here in Barrington? As long as they call it “fine wine”, nobody gets drunk, right? Will there be a breathalyzer like at the school dances? Maybe the School Committee candidate can administer the breathalyzer? Bottoms up. * http://clerkshq.com/content/Attachments/barrington-ri/120910_25b.pdf?clientSite=barrington-ri
Gary Morse September 09, 2012 at 12:34 PM
I hope to attend today's event. The following questions on affordable housing should be addressed: 1) Why does the town's Comprehensive Community Plan for affordable housing disregard state law requiring recognition of the "Comprehensive Housing Production and Rehabilitation Act of 2004" which does not require a deed restriction when counting existing affordable homes in town? 2) Will the candidates continue to support property tax breaks to affordable rental developers? The current average tax bill in Barrington is over $9000 per year, where an affordable rental property is as low as $500 per year. 3) Using the town ordinances as currently implemented, the build-out to meet a 10% affordable housing compliance will require as many as 4000 new homes in town (i.e. applying the 20% affordable development rule for all projects). Why was this not revealed in the Comprehensive Community Plan? 4) Why was the Bluemead Farm project given a green light by the Planning Board when it is not in compliance with the towns own ordinance, Section 185-185(C): "All low- and moderate-income housing units proposed are integrated throughout the development; are compatible in scale and architectural style to the market rate units within the project; and will be built and occupied prior to, or simultaneous with the construction and occupancy of any market rate units." Thank you for your attention to these important questions. Sincerely Gary Morse
Manifold Witness September 09, 2012 at 12:42 PM
Is this any way to plan a “Farm”? That’s another question for today, Gary. That’s one rough cut…. Agenda item for the Barrington Town Council Meeting, September 10, 2012: It’s a good thing the Barrington Town Planner keeps a golf club in his trunk! Here’s an excerpt from August 2012 monthly report by Barrington Town Planner Phil Hervey to the Town Council for their September 10, 2012 meeting to show what the Town Planner is up to: “Bluemead Farm Plat Master Plan application. The proposed Bluemead Farm Plat would create a nine-lot subdivision on Chachapacasset and Beach Roads, with a new street providing frontage for the interior lots. The Planning Board and TRC walked the thickly overgrown site on Wednesday, August 29. Luckily I had an excellent weed-whacking implement in my trunk to clear a walking path into the property – a Ping one iron (which ironically is often the reason I find myself hacking away in knee-deep weeds). “ When it comes to a proposed development plan, professionally speaking, when he’s trying to view the site to evaluate the proposal, should the Town Planner have to rough cut his way in… with a golf club?
Bristol County Anonymous September 09, 2012 at 12:46 PM
How much “fine wine” will it take for the Dems to discuss actually fixing a few roads?
Manifold Witness September 09, 2012 at 12:47 PM
Does Barrington need a Municipal Court? Another question for the Dems today. The Town Council apparently wants to get it done BEFORE the elections so they can appoint a judge. Usually a local attorney. Guess who. It would be nice if they could give the taxpayers some facts BEFORE they vote on it. Barrington Town Council Meeting, September 10, 2012: See the proposal regarding the establishment of a Barrington Municipal Court. Per the Police Chief/Animal Control report, there appear to be 19 violations of Barrington traffic ordinances in July, although the data doesn’t reconcile so it’s hard to tell what’s what. The Town Manager’s Report is at http://clerkshq.com/default.ashx?clientsite=barrington-ri Per the Town Manager’s report regarding the possible establishment of a Barrington Municipal Court: “Councilor Coyne and the administration will provide you (Town Council) with an update” There is no information contained in the report for the public to see in advance despite a “Patch” article June 12, 2012 which said that Barrington Town Manager Peter DeAngelis Jr. was to complete an “administrative review” to determine if a municipal court can give the town “a net revenue gain”. We haven’t seen the results of that review. http://barrington.patch.com/articles/is-barrington-municipal-court-worth-it
Manifold Witness September 09, 2012 at 01:00 PM
BCWA's disappearing S&P "A rating" representations…. another fun agenda item for the Dem “fine wine” debates today & for the Barrington Town Council Meeting on 9/10/12: There’s the mystery of the alleged S&P “award of an excellent investment grade A rating”: From Chairman Klepper’s June 29, 2012 report: “Sandy Mack, Council, informed the directors that the recent visit by Standard & Poors resulted in award of an excellent investment grade A rating...” Excerpt from what the BCWA website stated: ..."the Bristol County Water Authority completed a successful bond refinancing" .... "This follows on the heels of a recent “A” rating by Standard & Poor Rating Agency, which suggests sound financial management at the Authority". No such public rating for BCWA was on the S&P public rating database. S & P officials were contacted by the public. S&P officials were made aware of the representations stated on the BCWA website. S&P officials said that the representations appeared to be erroneous and that S&P’s legal staff would contact BCWA to have them remove the language from the website. Two days after it was reported to S&P, the assertion was removed from the BCWA website. What’s up with that? Mr. Klepper says the RWU students may be working on the BCWA website again soon with another BCWA “class project”. We can hardly wait.
Manifold Witness September 09, 2012 at 01:04 PM
Another hot topic for debate by the “fine wine” drinkers & on the agenda for the Barrington Town Council Meeting, September 10, 2012: The proposal for the new Community Center consultation contract is interesting. The Center will be a place for seniors and teenagers and others. The population demographics data presented is for Bristol County communities. We wonder if the other communities are supportive of this endeavor. Financially supportive? From the report: “The baby boomer is interested in a more active life style, they value quality are and will pay for services that allow them to “age in place”.” But if Barrington’s seniors are moving out due to the high taxes, who remains to “age in place”? “The Senior Center would also like to promote opportunities for inter-generational interaction such as a foster grandparent program, tutoring for young adults, provide adult day care and expand their role in the broader community.” The supporting photos of the Senior center show a few cars parked in a parking lot, one car parked on grass, 5 people signing in one day, and some folks in a class. The report indicates that the government feels that the existing Senior Center and the renovated Y won’t be sufficient to handle the recreational needs of Bristol County. Please discuss.
Barbara Donovan September 09, 2012 at 01:30 PM
Witness: The seniors are moving out of town because there is NO place for them here !! Why have a senior center in Barrington for the Bristol County area when most of the seniors have moved out of Barrington into Bristol and Warren !!
Gary Morse September 09, 2012 at 01:58 PM
Barbara, My points above are that we are distracted from real housing problems in town by creating affordable housing problems that don't actually exist. The "Comprehensive Housing Production and Rehabilitation Act of 2004" outlines in detail exactly the process for counting an "affordable house". But our Town Planner has ignored this statutory process. Using the guidelines laid out in the above RI laws, together with the State of RI Department of Labor 2010 median income in Barrington ($94,300), along with the towns own tax roll, we have a significant surplus of affordable homes in Barrington. We appear to be focused on make believe problems leaving real problems in the corner. As a taxpayer, I want these hard questions answered by town officials. Building out 4000 new homes in town to address a make believe problem is insane public policy.
Manifold Witness September 09, 2012 at 05:43 PM
Rather than tasting the "fine wine", will the candidates now address the real issues that concern us for the upcoming elections? Barrington government is running the clock. Playing with unscientific & unsupported proposed plastic bag bans & traffic ticket court to get a crony lawyer on the bench BEFORE the elections. Dems are drinking "fine wine" while the real issues sit on the sidelines fermenting in silence. BCWA? Not fixed. US Congressman Cicilline lied about the financial condition of Providence. Mrs. Speakman was on Mr. Cicilline's Washington transition team. Does Mrs. Speakman still support Mr. Cicilline? Mr. Obama promised (in his nomination acceptance speech) that he will "reform and strengthen Medicare" by "reducing health care costs". How will he reduce health care costs? Does it make sense to build more recreational facilities (& add more recreational expenses, including salaries & benefits, to the tax base) if seniors can't afford to live in Barrington as it is? Isn't such a center the cart before the horse of - where are Barrington senior citizens supposed to live if they cannot afford to retire in their own homes? Can the Senior Center be remodeled a bit instead? What is the impact of the new Y facility that isn't even finished (and uses Barrington land)? Can existing space at the library & the schools be more fully utilized? Maybe the Middle School renovations can include making the space more conducive to off-hours sharing?

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