City Council Meetings – Week of June 23rd

Land Use Committee: The Land Use Committee has scheduled a site visit for Monday, June 24th at 6:00 p.m. at 145 Warren Street in Newton Center. This visit is in relation to a request for a special permit/site plan approval to allow four single-family attached dwellings in two buildings, allow reduced side setbacks, increase the allowed lot coverage, allow a driveway within 10 feet of the side lot line and allow retaining walls greater than 4 feet within a setback at 145 Warren Street. See agenda.

Zoning and Planning Committee: The Zoning and Planning Committee will meet on Monday, June 24th at 7:00 p.m. in Room 205 and also in the Council Chamber. The agenda includes the following:

  • Riverside Station/355 Grove Street and 399 Grove Street (Developers) requesting amendments to the Zoning Ordinance relative to the Mixed Use 3 District*(See below for Planning Department Memo)
  • Lower Falls Improvement Association Riverside Committee requesting amendments to the Zoning Ordinance relative to the Mixed Use 3 District*(See below for Planning Department Memo. Click here to read comments from Kirk and Company to the Lower Falls Improvement Association – Riverside Committee on the City’s Riverside Vision Plan)
  • Request for amendments to the Inclusionary Zoning provisions of the Zoning Ordinance and apply the requirements to any project including 7 or more residential units; to increase the required percentage of affordable units for projects of a certain size; to require that some affordable units be designated for middle-income households; to create a new formula for calculating payments in lieu of affordable units and fractional cash payments; to waive certain inclusionary zoning requirements for 100% deed restricted affordable developments; to strengthen the Elder Housing with Services requirements and to clarify and improve the ordinance with other changes as necessary – See Planning Memo here.
  • Request to amend the Zoning Ordinance to create a short-term rental ordinance that defines the short-term rental and bed and breakfast uses; identifies what zoning districts they would be allowed in and under what criteria, conditions, limitations and permitting process**
  • Request to amend the Zoning Ordinances to create a short-term rental ordinance with fees that would require registration of short-term rentals with the Inspectional Services Department and fire inspections to protect public health and safety**
  • Re-appointment of Jack Leader and Robert Finkel to the Economic Development Commission
  • Re-appointment of Jane Brown, Robert Caruso, and Girard Plante to the Commission on Disability
  • Re-appointment of Nancy Grissom and Italo Visco to the Auburndale Historic District Commission

*See Planning Department memo here.

**See Planning Department memo here.

Land Use Committee: The Land Use Committee will meet on Tuesday, June 25th at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber. The agenda includes the following:

  • Request to amend a previously granted special permit/site plan approval council order condition which prohibited banks to now allow petitioner to lease commercial space to not more than one bank with a total square footage not to exceed 3800 sq. ft. at 845 Washington Street and 245 Walnut Street (Washington Place) – See Planning Department Memo
  • Request for a special permit/site plan approval to construct a two-story addition and one-story rear addition, further increasing the non-conforming FAR of .49 where .41 is allowed and .55 is proposed at 67 Marlboro Street – See Planning Department Memo
  • Request for a special permit/site plan approval to demolish the existing single-family dwelling and construct 7 single-family attached dwellings in two buildings, reduce the frontage requirement, reduce the side setback requirement, allow a retaining wall greater than 4 feet in the setback and allow a driveway in the side setback at 956 Walnut Street – See Planning Department Memo
  • Request for a change of zone to Mixed Use 3/TOD for portions of land located at 355 Grove Street currently zoned BU2 and 399 Grove Street currently zoned BU5 (Riverside)* – See Planning Department Memo
  • Request for a special permit/site plan approval to construct a 10 building, mixed use, transit-oriented development, of not more than 1,520,000 sq. ft. and more than 20,000 sq. ft. of gross floor area including up to 650,000 sq. ft. of office use, up to 750 residential units containing no more than 750,000 sq. ft., retail space of not more than 200,000 sq. ft., buildings up to 18 stories in height, building height of up to 230 feet, FAR up to 2.7, no more than 10% open space, and a whole host of other requests and waivers for 355 and 399 Grove Street (Riverside)* – See Planning Department Memo

*The Chair of the Land Use Committee, Greg Schwartz, notes that the Committee will meet jointly with the Planning and Development Board to discuss these items. It is his intent to take public comment after a presentation from the petitioner. Public Comment will end approximately one half hour prior to the end of the meeting in order to allow Councilors to discuss the petition and raise questions. The public hearing will remain open and there will be additional opportunities for public comment. Written testimony is welcomed and can be sent to citycouncil@newtonma.gov.

Finance Committee: The Finance Committee will meet on Wednesday, June 26th at 7:00 p.m. in Room 211. The agenda includes the following:

  • Request to amend Chapter 17, Section 3 and Chapter 26, Section 8D of the Newton City Ordinances to provide for enforcement and fines for violations of the sidewalk clearing ordinance
  • Request to transfer funds to correct an error made in FY2019 funding of the Water, Sewer and Stormwater Health Benefits (Total: $235,000)
  • Request to reduce bond authorizations as a result in cost savings on projects or premiums received and applied to during the bond sales (Total: $1,468,425.42 – for details see agenda)
  • Request to transfer $15,000 from the Human Resources Full-time Salaries Account to the Inspectional Services Overtime/Special Projects Account to cover costs of the scanning project
  • Request to transfer $700,000 from the Snow and Ice Overtime Account to the Snow and Ice Rental Vehicles (Contractors) Account to rebalance the actual costs incurred for the removal of snow and ice throughout the FY2019 winter season
  • Request to amend Chapter 12, Section 71, by revising the definition of “resuable bag”, revising the definition of retailers to include establishments of less than 3500 sq. ft., and adding a $0.10 fee on paper bags provided by the retailer
  • Request to increase the salary of the City Clerk/Clerk of the City Council to $139,719 effective July 1, 2019, to match the percentage increase in the FY2020 budget for H-grade employees
  • Re-appointment of James Pellegrine as Constable for the City of Newton
  • Re-appointment of Daniel Kunitz as a trustee of the Cousens Fund