OXFORD - Bay Path Regional Vocational High School Superintendent David Papagni and Business Manager John Lafleche attended last week’s Board of Selectmen meeting to present the cost of the proposed Bay Path Building Project.
Total project cost is $73.8 million, of which Oxford’s share would be $3.3 million. All ten towns in the district, which includes Webster, Dudley, Charlton, Southbridge, Auburn, Spencer, Rutland, and North Brookfield, and Paxton, will have to approve the plan.
Mr. Papagni noted that the school was built 40 years ago, was originally intended for 850 students, and now provides the area’s leading vocational/academic education for 1,100 students. The school is in need of major repairs and renovation to bring it up to current standards.
He stressed that the proposed renovation and expansion plans reflect the most cost-efficient and state-of-the-art construction available, barring new school fabrication.
The proposal will be on the warrant for the May 2 town meeting, and will require a two-thirds majority to pass. The board next met with Oxford School Committee Chairman Brenda Ennis and School Superintendent Allen Himmelberger. Ms. Ennis requested a partnership with the Board of Selectmen to work together on the FY 2013 budget.
Mr. Himmelberger then commented on the school department’s new home in the Community Center and said he was pleased with the results, thanking the Board and the Town of Oxford for the new location.
Chairman Ennis then informed the board that a contract extension had been offered to Mr. Himmelberger, and also provided an update on the fact that school choice numbers have increased, demonstrating that students want to come into the Oxford Schools.
She also mentioned the great success of the Junior ROTC Program and the pride it has brought to the Town of Oxford.
A “No Name Calling” event was to be held at the high school from Wednesday January 25 through Friday, January 27, to stop name calling at the schools and students were requested to wear black clothing “to help black out name calling.” The event would conclude with a short play scheduled for 1 p.m. on Friday at the high school. The sophomore class had written and was to perform the play.
The board continued the public hearing for selecting the residential tax rate factor, which will determine the percentage of tax to be borne by each class of property for fiscal year 2012. Assessor Chris Pupka notified the board that the state Department of Revenue was “still in the approval process” and that he was “working diligently with the DOR to set the tax factor.” Various property classification forms had been submitted and were awaiting DOR approval. The hearing was continued to February 7, 2012, at 7:50 p.m.
The board held a public hearing on P&D Pizza’s request for four automatic amusement licenses (two pinball and two video games) presented by Mr. Ted Efstathiou. All abutters had been notified of the request and as no public comments arose, selectmen unanimously approved Mr. Efstathiou’s request.
Also on the board’s agenda was a signage request for Wellington Brook. Mr. Glenn Krevosky presented his case for correcting the Route 12 signs to reflect the rightful name of the waterway from Triphammer to Wellington Brook. Mr. Krevosky provided extensive research, including correspondence from the Charles H. Wellington Trust dating back to 1939, as well as FEMA maps. The board unanimously approved writing a letter to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to change the two signs to the correct name.
The presidential primary is March 6; February 15 is the last day to register to vote in the primary.
Chairman Jennie Caissie requested that Town Manager Joseph Zeneski look into audio-visual improvements for the meeting room used by the Board of Selectmen and other town boards in order to improve quality for those viewing the meetings at home.
- Sunday, 29 January 2012
- Posted in Categories: : Selectmen