Town Manager Orders Construction in Watertown, Town Starts COVID-19 Info Line

Watertown residents can call a local info line to ask questions about the Coronavirus (COVID-19), and also announced an end to construction in town beginning Wednesday. The moves came after Gov. Baker’s order on Monday morning that all non-essential businesses would be closed starting Tuesday due to the Coronavirus outbreak, and a stay-at-home advisory for Massachusetts residents. Construction must come to an end by 5 p.m. on March 25. “The Governor’s order is clear that essential services are the only activities that should continue until 12:00 p.m. on April 7, 2020,” Driscoll said in the announcement. The construction halt applies to all projects, whether private or by the Town, said Town Council President Mark Sideris.

Watertown Schools Art Exhibit Postponed Due to COVID-19

The following information was provided by the Watertown Mall:

We are very sad to say that in a response to COVID-19 public health concerns, the annual Watertown Public Schools’ Student Art Exhibit, originally scheduled for March 24 through April 9, has been cancelled for this year. As of right now, we do not have any postponed dates for the exhibit set in place, but we will keep the community informed on any changes. About the Watertown Mall

The Watertown Mall is wheelchair accessible and accessible by MBTA Bus routes 70 and 70A. Hours are Monday through Saturday 9:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.,m.; Sunday 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. For more information about this event and other Watertown Mall programs, such as our weekly Walking Club, please visit www.watertown-mall.com or contact the management office at 617-926-4968 x21.

Watertown Business Coalition Seeks to Help Local Businesses

The following announcement was sent out by the Watertown Business Coalition:

Dear Watertown Business Community –

Certainly, these are unprecedented times. 

At the same time that we are worried about the health of our loved ones, the Coronavirus outbreak has also put the well-being of our businesses at risk. We are trying to pivot to adjust to this strange and constantly changing environment, while trying to find a way to keep paying our employees. The Watertown Business Coalition wants to help in any way we can. Hardest hit is our core group of followers: restaurants, retail, and “mom and pop” stores. We urge you to all be proactive.

Several Watertown Students Make Minuteman Honor Roll

Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical High School has released the names of students who attained Honor Roll and High Honor Roll for the second quarter of the academic year. The following students from Watertown received honor from Minuteman High School:

High Honors

Rouaa Alwaz, Biotechnology, Grade 12Marwa Alwaz, Biotechnology, Grade 10Zoha Bibi, Health Assisting, Grade 11Dayane Coutinho, Plumbing, Grade 11Saleena Khan, Health Assisting, Grade 9Elizabeth Linarte, Biotechnology, Grade 12Ana Martocchia, Metal Fabrication, Grade 9

Honors

Mahnoor Bibi, Health Assisting, Grade 9Samuel Cerqueira, Horticulture, Grade 11Jonathan Corbett, Advanced Manufacturing, Grade 11Maria DeFreitas, Early Education & Care, Grade 11Izadora Karla Goncalves, Health Assisting, Grade 11Emma Leone, Early Education & Care, Grade 9Ava Martin, Design/Visual Comm, Grade 9Theodore Surenian, Programming & Web, Grade 11

RMV Extends Deadlines for Vehicle Inspections, Commercial Licenses & Permits

The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) is announcing today that it will be implementing a 60-day extension to Commercial Driver’s Licenses (CDLs) and Commercial Learner’s Permits (CLPs) expired or expiring in March and April, and that the Service Centers in Milford and Wilmington are reopened to exclusively perform commercial license/permit transactions. These initiatives recognize the importance of commercial vehicle drivers to the supply chain during the State of Emergency declaration, and will continue to prioritize reducing customer volumes in physical locations. All commercial licenses or permits with an expiration date between March 1, 2020 and April 30, 2020, will have the 60-day extension applied to that customer’s credential. The RMV implemented a similar extension for residents with Class D, Class M and Class DM driver’s licenses, ID cards, and Learner’s Permits on March 16 with the exception of customers whose end of stay in the United States is the same as the expiration date on their driver’s license, ID card, or Learner’s Permit. Customers eligible for these extensions should wait to visit an RMV Service Center to renew until after the State of Emergency has concluded.

Small Saves Tries Some Pre-Game Visualization in This Week’s Comic

Cartoon by James Demarco

James DeMarco grew up in Watertown and became a goaltender at age 5. It’s his life’s passion to stand between the pipes and keep the puck out of the net. Combining this with the love of cartooning,  Small Saves  emerged in 1991 and took on a life of his own. “To play goal–then come home and draw Small Saves — is my ideal definition of a good day.”

$1 Million Available for Programs Helping Older Residents Affected by Coronavirus

The following information was provided by the Tufts Health Plan Foundation:

Tufts Health Plan Foundation announced today it is making an additional $1 million available to efforts driven by community and to nonprofit organizations supporting older people affected by the coronavirus outbreak in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Connecticut. Tufts Health Plan Foundation will continue to support healthy aging by funding organizations assisting with access to food, at-home support, housing, transportation, medical supplies and other services, especially for older people and those most vulnerable.  Those with underlying health conditions and people over 60 have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. It is especially important to ensure resources are available to provide these supports and services. “We are grateful to the local, state and federal public health agencies, first responders, and the many community organizations who are stepping up to respond to this challenge,” said Tom Croswell, president and CEO of Tufts Health Plan.

Watertown Food Pantry Changing Hours, Opening One Day a Week

Items collected for the Watertown Community Foundation’s food drive in January. The Foundation is organizing another one in the month of October. Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 (the Coronavirus) the Watertown Food Pantry will be consolidating hours and will be open one day a week. Beginning March 24, the Watertown Food Pantry will be open for extended hours on Tuesdays, but will not be open on Thursdays. The Pantry, located at the rear of the Belmont-Watertown United Methodist Church at 80 Mt.