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Chelsea Council OK’s street project bid, option to purchase property, city manager contract extension

With Council Member Frank Hammer attending his last Chelsea Council meeting after 27 years, elected officials began council business by approving and presenting him with a proclamation of appreciation for his many years of service to the city.

In addition, upon the recommendation of the city’s Human Rights Commission, the City Council voted 4-3 to draft a resolution of support for the HR 5 Equality Act, https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/5.

Several council members expressed reservations about drafting such a resolution including the fact that the Chelsea City Council is a non-partisan body of elected officials and that there is no precedent for supporting political bills.

Also mentioned was drafting a resolution of this sort was inconsistent with Chelsea’s charter.

Voting in favor of drafting the resolution were Council Members Jane Pacheco, Rick Catherman, Tony Ianelli and Cheri Albertson. Voting against it were Council Members Hammer and Peter Feeney and Mayor Melissa Johnson.

(More information about this item can be found at the bottom of this story.)

Among the other items receiving City Council approval was a bid from Hard Rock Drilling for the Flanders Street project. The project includes curbs, paving and storm drains as well as a directional bore of a storm water pipe to the detention pond at Silver Maples, according to the explanation of the agenda item.

The bid price was $168,050. The start date for the project is dependent on when the city receives a wetlands permit from the state.  

The City Council also unanimously approved an option to purchase real property for “adding parks, field space and possibly housing” at 400 N. Freer Road for $450,000 and in addition approved a $5,000 deposit that will be credited to the sale at closing.

With this approval, the due diligence period begins that will be completed during the next 120 days and includes environmental review, zoning, and tax liens according to information provided by the city.

In other business, 183 parcels in the city that are delinquent in paying stormwater bills totaling about $15,000 will be added to the winter tax bills for those properties.

Also in a unanimous vote and following a positive review by the City Council, City Manager John Hanifan’s contract was extended through 2023.

Council Member Hammer put forth the motion to adjourn the meeting and with that his long-standing years of service to the city came to a close as well.  

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