Schools cut $400K from spending plan...

May 29, 2020 by

Published in the May 29, 2020 edition By MARK SARDELLA WAKEFIELD — The School Department will cut $400,000 from its FY 2021 budget proposal as part of the overall plan to trim $2.6 million from the town’s budget due to projected revenue shortfalls as a result of the COVID-19 shutdown. The town anticipates a significant drop in local receipts (excise tax, hotel tax and local option meals tax). In addition to that, the town is preparing for cuts in state aid. School Superintendent Douglas Lyons detailed his plan to go forward with a reduced School Department budget of $43,576,659 at Tuesday’s School Committee meeting. Lyons highlighted some of the new challenges related to safety and re-opening during the on-going pandemic. The reduced budget will support what the Wakefield Public Schools (WPS) need in order to create a safe teaching...

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FOLQ, DPW partner on Lake parks project...

May 28, 2020 by

Published in the May 28, 2020 edition. WAKEFIELD — Thanks to a gift from the Friends of Lake Quannapowitt, the Gertrude Spaulding and Colonel Connelly parks are in the process of being rehabilitated. The improvements include improved stormwater treatment and erosion measures. These parks are located at the intersection of Lowell Street and Quannapowitt Parkway at the head of the Lake. Enhancements will include upgrading the pathway, which has eroded below the surrounding lawn area. In its current condition, the pathway creates a swale that concentrates stormwater and increases erosion of the beach into the lake. The new pathways will be re-graded to not only help eliminate the beach erosion, but also meet the Americans with Disabilities Act grading tolerances. The project also includes enhancements to provide improved stormwater treatment and erosion stabilization. A new catch basin, forebay,...

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Back to the drawing board on graduation...

May 28, 2020 by

Published in the May 28, 2020 edition. By MARK SARDELLA WAKEFIELD — As of last night, it appeared that the School Department will once again modify its 2020 graduation plan and try to do a larger event in July or August that will have most, if not all 260 graduates together for one ceremony. Superintendent of Schools Douglas Lyons told the Board of Health last night that due to the strong feelings of senior class members and their families as well as School Committee members, the School Department would in all likelihood attempt to do a larger graduation ceremony later in the summer when restrictions on large gatherings are expected to be relaxed. On Tuesday night, Lyons had presented to the School Committee a graduation ceremony proposal that would have had rotating, smaller groups of...

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The city reopens

May 28, 2020 by

Published May 29, 2020 MELROSE — Governor Charlie Baker recently announced his plans for opening up Massachusetts and Melrose will begin its transition as well, following the guidelines issued by the state. “It’s important for folks to understand that this is by no means a return to business as usual,” said Mayor Paul Brodeur. “The Statewide ‘Safer at Home’ policy remains in place.” He advised that all residents continue to do the following: • Stay home and work from home as much as possible—especially older residents and those at high risk for illness. • Wash your hands and disinfect surfaces. • Cover your face when outside the home. • And when you do venture out to pick up your curbside delivery, follow the rules and be patient. Under the reopening guidelines, houses of worship and...

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Mayor: Budget-setting difficult in current climate...

May 28, 2020 by

Published May 29, 2020 MELROSE — The City Council continues to pore over Mayor Paul Brodeur’s first spending plan, an $88.4 million budget document that allocates about 2 percent more than what municipal government and the schools have to work with this year. The mayor’s budget covering the year beginning July 1 proposes $5 million for the Police Department, $4.8 million for the Fire Department and nearly $33 million for schools. The various areas of the city’s public works department are also getting a total of several million dollars under the Brodeur plan. The schools’ proposed allocation is 2 percent more than what educators are working with in fiscal year 2020. The police request request a 0.3 percent increase and fire’s proposal reflects a 0.8 percent spending hike. A couple of weeks ago, Brodeur outlined the...

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Class of 2020 graduates in August...

May 28, 2020 by

Published May 29, 2020 MELROSE — Before the world got run over by the coronavirus, Melrose High’s Class of 2020 was supposed to graduate early Friday night. While that won’t be happening, Melrose High Principal Jason Merrill sent out a message on Twitter this week urging everyone to wear red on May 29 to show their support for this year’s senior class, who have certainly put up with quite a bit, such as the cancellation of their prom. He also wrote, “The Melrose High School Graduation has been postponed until August 7th. The MHS Class of 2020 will graduate together on Fred Green Field.” Over the past few weeks, Melrose High’s administration has been giving updates for seniors on the school’s website and those updates often bring bad news. Here are a few recent...

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