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Town Manager's Newsletter - July 2022

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Town Manager's Newsletter        

July 2022
Town Manager

This is the inaugural edition of a new monthly communication - the Town Manager's Newsletter. Each month, the Town Manager's Office, will distribute a compilation of updates on a variety of topics. This newsletter will provide residents the opportunity to learn about new projects, general updates, and much more. To enroll directly in email notifications for the newsletter, please click here  or scan the QR code at the bottom of the page. Please feel free to share this newsletter with your friends, family and neighbors. 

Yours in Town Government,

Lyn N. Simmons

Town Manager  

Greenwood Pool Schedule
I am very pleased to report to that we were able to secure additional lifeguards for Greenwood Pool and the pool will be open 7 days a week. Additionally, senior swim hours will be offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12pm - 1pm. The pool will be reserved for senior use only during these hours.
Adult Center Pickleball Courts
The repair work on the pickleball courts started on June 13. The courts will be closed while this work takes place. This work is being done at no additional cost to the Town. The initial application of the court sub-surface was improperly applied and caused the court surface to fail while still under contract. The tentative schedule from the contractor has the work scheduled to be completed by the end of July.
Park and Conservation Areas Cleanup
Illegal dumping signs have been placed in a few locations in the meadows area of town. A camera is installed and more have been ordered. Trash/recycling containers have been placed in the new parking area near the farm fields. For Turner Park back near the pond, we have ordered signs that read: area is a “carry in, carry out facility” meaning there are no trash receptacles by the pond and items need to be carried to the trail head near the parking lot. We do not have the staff capacity to cover every area of the parks and some personal responsibility needs to be exercised to help keep these areas clean. 
Building Department
The alternate Electrical Inspector was instrumental in saving a contractor’s life on a job site the week of June 6. When approaching a house for an inspection, he noticed the contractor in distress and removed him from his vehicle and called 911. We are grateful for his swift action and being in the right place at the right time. 

The zoning complaint process has been updated. Zoning complaints need to be filed in writing using the new online form, requesting a form by mail, or filling a form out in person. As always, anonymous complaints are not investigated. Individuals requesting information on the complainant will need to file a public records request to obtain a copy of the complaint.

Police Department Accreditation
The Longmeadow Police Department received its Accreditation Award from the Massachusetts Police Accreditation Commission (MPAC). Chief Stocks and Captain Mazzaferro, the department's Accreditation Manager, attended the ceremony in Andover, MA to receive the award. This is the department’s second award after having received its first Accreditation in 2019. The Accreditation process entails being audited every three years to prove compliance with 326 Standards in addition to 24 standards of Police Reform. In February, a team of assessors evaluated the department’s facility, policies and practices to ensure the standards of MPAC are being met. The Longmeadow Police Department is the only municipal police agency in Hampden County that is fully accredited. A special recognition goes to Captain Mazzaferro for managing the accreditation process, achieving this award was accomplished through the commitment and diligence of every member of this agency. This accolade is symbolic of the department’s commitment to professional excellence and proves the policies and procedures of the LPD have been deemed "best practices" of the profession.
Water Tower Water Levels and Level 2 Drought
The lack of rainfall over the past four months is being felt across Massachusetts, as 90 percent of the state is now experiencing drought conditions. On July 12 Massachusetts Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Bethany Card declared that there was a “significant” drought in the Connecticut River Valley, central, northeast, and southeast parts of the state, and a mild drought in western Massachusetts, Nantucket, and Martha’s Vineyard. Water consumption increases in Longmeadow during the summer months and during the last week we have seen impacts on our municipal water system due to excessive demand for water. This is primarily due to irrigation of lawns. Longmeadow does not have an unlimited supply of water. Our water comes from Springfield and is stored in our water tank. With excessive use, the water tank drops to a low level causing a less than desirable situation. The supply from Springfield cannot keep up with this amount of consumption. We always try to maintain a certain surplus of water in the tank primarily for firefighting. In the past week we have come very close to not maintaining this surplus. We have seen these impacts particularly during early morning irrigation. We are asking residents and businesses to engage in water conservation primarily by limiting irrigation and any filling of pools during this period. Compliance is voluntary. Increased public messaging will take place along with a town wide reverse 911 call to provide education.

Stormwater Bylaw Review
We have hired Pioneer Valley Planning Commission to complete a regulatory review of our stormwater management code  in order to bring us into compliance with the federal municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) permit, which was issued in 2016 and is phasing in with requirements annually. This code review will mostly focus on Chapters 600, 700, and 800 of the General Bylaws, but will also highlight areas in the Zoning Code and Subdivision Rules and Regulations that need to be updated to come into compliance. A portion of PVPC's recommendations will be mandatory for compliance, and a smaller portion will highlight opportunities to update code to current low impact development/stormwater management best practices. These will be clearly identified so that the Town is not confused as to which are required by the MS4 permit and which are simply recommended as best practice. The goal is to have full recommendations at the track-change level in place for special hearings in the late summer/early fall and adoption at Fall Town Meeting.
Bliss Road Cell Tower
Power has been energized at the site. AT&T has installed equipment and went on air in April. Verizon is currently awaiting materials to install.

Upcoming topics and events...
September 2, 2022 August edition of the Town Manager's Newsletter to be distributed
September 5, 2022 Town Offices closed for Labor Day
September 6, 2022 State Primary
October 25, 2022 Special Fall Town Meeting

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