CITY COUNCIL MEETING OF NOVEMBER 4, 2019

 

          Cambridge City Hall, 795 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139 

I.  CITY MANAGER'S AGENDA

1. Transmitting Communication from Louis A. DePasquale, City Manager, relative to the appropriation of $25,000.00 from Free Cash to the General Fund Human Service Programs Other Ordinary Maintenance account for the support of transportation for Cambridge seniors for grocery shopping and medical appointments through the not for profit agency, Door to Door.

CMA 2019 #286  

This item was adopted on the consent agenda (no discussion).

 

2. Transmitting Communication from Louis A. DePasquale, City Manager, relative to the appropriation of the Project Bread Food Pantry grant received from the Project Bread organization for $2,500.00 to the Grant Fund Human Services Other Ordinary Maintenance account which will be used by the Cambridge Senior Center Food Pantry pay for purchases at the Greater Boston Food Bank, and for other food purchases for our Senior Food Pantry.

CMA 2019 #287  

This item was adopted on the consent agenda.

 

3. A communication transmitted from Louis A. DePasquale, City Manager, relative to the creation of a new municipal Renewable Energy and Greenhouse Gas (“GHG”) Reduction Revolving Fund (“Revolving Fund”) to serve the City of Cambridge’s (“City”) municipal energy aggregation, and adoption of the proposed new ordinance, Chapter 3.24, entitled “Departmental Revolving Funds.”

CMA 2019 #288  

This item was passed to a second reading.

 


II.  CALENDAR

CHARTER RIGHT 

 

1. That the City Manager is requested to confer with relevant City staff on determining the most appropriate signage and messaging that would best educate cyclists on the importance of following traffic laws, particularly stopping at red lights, for their own safety and the safety of other cyclists and pedestrians.

POR 2019 #359

This order, which was originally introduced by Councillor Kelley, Councillor Siddiqui, and Councillor Carlone, would place signs reminding cyclists that it is unlawful for them to proceed with their route when there is a red light at twenty intersections. Councillor Kelley emphasized that this is a safety issue that should be corrected by education, and that is poses a safety risk for pedestrians and cyclists alike. He stated that when he inquired about the potential of alternatives, such as the Idaho Stop, he received no response from City Employees. Councillor Toomey agreed with Councillor Kelley, stating there needs to be more enforcement, and that the current situation is particularly dangerous for seniors. Mayor McGovern and Councillor Siddiqui brought forth substitute language that amended the order to focus on education efforts for cyclists, pedestrians, and motorists alike, rather than just cyclists. Vice Mayor Devereux remarked that only targeting cyclists for education efforts could create a problematic ‘us v. them’ narrative between cyclists and other road users, while Councillor Zondervan emphasized the need for education, particularly with tourists or those unfamiliar with cycling in urban environments. The amendment was adopted, and Councillor Carlone was added as a co-sponsor to the amended order, as he was a co-sponsor on the original policy order. While Councillor Kelley expressed frustration with the amendments to the order, he voted in favor of the amended order’s adoption.

This order was adopted as amended.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS 

 

  1. A communication transmitted from Louis A. DePasquale, City Manager, relative to proposed amendments to the following ordinance: and proposed amendments to Chapter 14.04 of the Cambridge Municipal Code (the "Fair Housing Ordinance).  Fair Housing (passed to a 2nd

reading) AWAITING HOME RULE LEGISLATION-BEFORE PROPOSAL CAN BE ORDAINED

CMA 2018 #234

No action taken.

  1. A communication transmitted from Louis A. DePasquale, City Manager, relative to Awaiting

Report Item Number 18-108, regarding a report on offering early voting in City Council and

School Committee Elections. PENDING RESPONSE FROM LEGISLATURE 

CMA 2018 #286

No action taken.

III.  APPLICATIONS AND PETITIONS

1. An application was received from Cambridge Trust, requesting permission for two (2) internally illuminating projecting signs at the premises numbered 415 Main Street. approval has been received from Inspectional Services, Department of Public Works, Community Development Department and abutters with proof of mailing.

APP 2019 #88  

This application was approved without discussion.

 


 

VI.  POLICY ORDER AND RESOLUTION LIST

1. That a joint Roundtable/Working Meeting on Universal Pre-Kindergarten Program be scheduled for December 2, 2019 in place of the Regular City Council Meeting.

Mayor McGovern 

POR 2019 #362  

This order was adopted.

 

2. That this City Council goes on record urging all residents to honor the men and women who have

defended our country, as well as those who are serving today by celebrating Veterans’ Day on Monday, November 11, 2019.

Mayor McGovern, Councillor Kelley 

POR 2019 #363  

This order was adopted on the consent agenda.

 

  1. That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to report back to the Council by the end of this term on progress toward identifying a source of funding and a timetable for the design and construction of a modern roundabout at the Brattle-Sparks-Craigie intersection, to share the consultant’s 2017-18 report on the feasibility of a modern roundabout, and to schedule a community meeting in early 2020 to further discuss this project.

Vice Mayor Devereux, Councillor Zondervan, Mayor McGovern, Councillor Carlone 

POR 2019 #364  

This order was adopted on the consent agenda.

 

  1. That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to confer with the Cambridge Health Alliance and other appropriate City personnel to establish plans designed to mitigate the impact of the closing of Windsor House upon Cambridge seniors, and to report back to the City Council in a timely manner. Councillor Simmons, Mayor McGovern 

POR 2019 #365  

This order was adopted on the consent agenda.

 

  1. Resolution in support of the Harvard Graduate Students Union-UAW’S demands for a fair contract now Councillor Siddiqui, Mayor McGovern, Councillor Simmons, Councillor Mallon 

POR 2019 #366  

Several Councillors voiced their support of the Harvard Graduate Students Union’s efforts and demands for a fair contract, and thanked members of the Union who spoke during the public comment portion of the Council Meeting. Ideas on how to further support the Union’s efforts, such as holding a committee meeting or engaging in a dialogue with Harvard’s President, were discussed. I questioned if the City’s living wage standards could be applied in this situation, as the Graduate Students routinely make less than the living wage in Cambridge, but Mayor McGovern clarified that the living wage rule only applied to City employees and contractors, not private entities. Mayor McGovern noted that when the Council had previously discussed instituting a city-wide $15 minimum wage, small business owners expressed they may struggle to meet that wage, but that an employer as large and with such a large endowment as Harvard would not struggle to pay its workers a living wage.

This order was adopted.

 

  1. That the City Manager be and hereby is requested to confer with appropriate City staff on the feasibility of providing child care for those interested in becoming temporary census takers whom otherwise may not be able to capitalize on the opportunity; and be it further

Councillor Kelley 

POR 2019 #367  

This order was adopted on the consent agenda.

 

VII.  COMMITTEE REPORTS

1. A report from Councillor Councillor Craig A. Kelley, Co-Chair of the Ordinance Committee, of a public hearing held on October 22, 2019 at 4:00 PM to discuss a proposed amendment to the Demolition Delay Ordinance

                 CRT 2019 #73

This report was accepted and placed on file.

 

A. A petition was received from Stephan Badige et al, regarding amending the Municipal Code, Title 2, Chapter 2.78.090 subparagraph E and I by changing six months to twelve months twice in each paragraph to permit the Cambridge Historical Commission to delay the issuance of a demolition permit for twelve months.

                 APP 2019 #52

This application was moved to a second reading.

 

2. A report from Councillor Quinton Zondervan, Co-Chair of the Health and Environment Committee for a public hearing held on October 23, 2019 at 10:00 AM to discuss the status of the next community-wide greenhouse gas inventory and annual reporting of same going forward          

CRT 2019 #74

This report was accepted and placed on file.

 

A. That the City Manager be and is hereby requested to produce an annual report of key indicators of community wide emissions, and at least every 4 years conduct a full greenhouse gas inventory as part of this report

                 POR 2019 #368

Councillor Zondervan

This order was adopted.

 

VIII.  COMMUNICATIONS AND REPORTS FROM OTHER CITY OFFICERS

1. A communication was received from Councillor Craig A. Kelley, transmitting a memorandum "Cambridge Police Department Traffic Citation Trends: 2010-Q1.2019".

COF 2019 #58  

During discussion, Councillor Kelley stated that the report shows that traffic enforcement had dropped at a disproportionately faster rate than collisions, and that the next City Council should inquire with the Police Department about this gap. The report cites the second most common reason someone was given a citation as being for problems with state inspection stickers, which Vice Mayor Devereux voiced concern about, and emphasized that the focus should be on enforcing safety issues, such as speeding. Councillor Kelley then clarified that sticker citations were often given as a secondary citation after a motorist had been pulled over for a different offense.  

This communication was accepted and placed on file.