Town Council, School Building Committee Meetings Cancelled During Coronavirus Outbreak

Watertown’s Town Hall. Watertown’s Town Council and the School Building Committee will not be meeting until at least April 7, due to the Coronavirus outbreak. Town Council President Mark Sideris sent an email to Councilors alerting them that for now, they will not be meeting, even using video conferencing. The message reminded the Council that the March 24 Council meeting would not be taking place. “I cancelled the council meeting scheduled for (Tuesday) as there was nothing pressing that could not be dealt with at a later date,” Sideris said in the message.

Council President Discusses Watertown’s Response to the Coronavirus, Steps You Can Take

Town Council President Mark Siders at the inauguration in 2018. To the Watertown community:

I want to take this opportunity to give you a brief update with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic and how Watertown is managing our response to it. The Town Manager and Administration along with myself and the Town Council are staying on top of all measures being put in place at the state level, in addition to those regulations we have put in place locally. The Town Manager is meeting daily with the Director of Public Health, the Police and Fire Chiefs, and other Department heads to assess the effectiveness of recent state and local regulations, and to determine if other actions may be needed to best protect our community. Communications from the Town Manager are available on the Town’s website and are updated frequently.

Council Approves Road Work Funds, Two Years of Repairs Will be Done

Watertown will get a double dose of road repair projects this year after the Town Council approved funding for the 2020 road and sidewalk repair projects. Tuesday night, the Town Council approved the borrowing of $2.5 million to pay for the reconstruction of seven roadways. This is on top of the 2019 road projects, which were delayed after the bids came in about 33 percent higher than was budgeted. Town Engineer Matt Shuman said the roads will undergo full-depth reclamation, where the top four inches of the roadway are removed, ground and pulverized and put down in a new layer of asphalt. They will also install new sidewalks with handicap ramps and granite curbing. The seven roads to be repaired as part of the 2020 road program are: Kimball Road, Downey Street, Wheeler Lane, Louise Street, Frank Street, Tappan Avenue and Piermont Street.

Challenges for Town Council Term: School Projects, Charter Review, Development

Local Girl Scouts lead the Pledge of Allegiance during the 2019 Watertown Inauguration at the Mosesian Center for the Arts on Thursday night. The newly inaugurated Town Council has several challenges coming down the road over the next two years, including school building projects, the Town Charter review and the development in town that just keeps going. Town Council President Mark Sideris discussed the issues that will face Watertown in the upcoming Town Council term at Thursday night’s Inauguration Ceremony at the Mosesian Center for the Arts. Town Clerk John Flynn administered the oath of office to Town Council President Mark Sideris; Town Councilors Anthony Donato, Tony Palomba, Caroline Bays, John Gannon, Angeline Kounelis, Lisa Feltner, Vincent Piccirilli and Kenneth Woodland; School Committee members Kendra Foley, Lindsay Mosca and David Stokes; and Library Trustees Sheppard Ferguson and Teddy Kokoros. Coming Challanges

Town Council President Mark Sideris spoke about the priorities for the upcoming Town Council term at Thursday’s inauguration.

Town Councilor Finished Encore, Served for More Than a Dozen Years

The Town Council recently honored Susan Falkoff after her last Council meeting. She served nearly 14 years. The Town Council bid farewell to a long-serving member, last week. Susan Falkoff leaves the Council after nearly 14 years of service, and the last stretch was a bonus. It was not that long ago that the Town Council was honoring Falkoff with a proclamation.

Council OKs Pay Raise for Town Manager, Gives Performance Evaluation

Watertown Town Manager Michael Driscoll. Watertown Town Manager Michael Driscoll will be getting a raise after the Town Council approved his pay hike following a recent job evaluation. Driscoll’s pay rises $9,500 to $205,000, and the increase is retroactive to the beginning of Fiscal Year 2019 (July 1, 2018). The increase is the first for the Town Manager since 2017. Salary Comparison

When determining the new salary, a review of other Watertown public employees was conducted, as well as the salaries of other communities with Town Managers, Sideris said.

Town Council Sets Budget Priorities for Fiscal 2021

A lot of money was raised and spent on the 2015 Watertown Election. The Town Council’s list of priorities for next year’s budget includes funding the school building projects, funding streets and sidewalks. Also, two new ones were added: funding a climate & energy master plan and hiring a consultant to help with the review of the Town Charter. The list of 15 priorities was approved by the Town Council at the Nov. 26 Council meeting.