M. Celata Real Estate
268A Broadway, Revere, MA 02151
781-289-7500 | [email protected]

Press Releases
 

City of Revere on Strong Financial Footing

3/15/2019

City Is on Strong Financial Footing

Arrigo says $6 million in general fund;

$8.2 million in ‘rainy day fund’

Mayor Brian Arrigo reported to the City Council that the City of Revere is in "spectacular financial shape” during his update on Free Cash Transfers to the Stabilization Fund, Water and Sewer Stabilization Fund, and the Capital Improvement Stabilization Fund.

"We have just over $6 million that will be certified in our General Fund and $2.8 million that is certified in our Water and Sewer Enterprise Fund,” Arrigo told the Council at Monday’s meeting. "Of that amount that has been certified in Free Cash, we are going to be depositing $900,000 in to our General Fund Rainy Day Account. All told, the city is in spectacular financial shape – the fact we have reserves on the general side up over $8 million now is a great sign.”

Arrigo attributed the city’s financial strength to the hard work of the Council, his administration, and the city’s financial officials.

"It’s not by accident these great things are happening,” said Arrigo. "It is the tireless work of this Council, of the administration, and the folks who work in our financial offices and are committed to making the city a great place.”

Residents will see some of the funds being used for streets and sidewalk improvements throughout the city, while each of the Revere schools will benefit greatly, especially the school clubs and varsity sports programs at Revere High School.

Arrigo said $1.4 million will go toward streets and sidewalks, with an additional $800,000 in state grants targeted for that purpose.

Students at Revere High would see an unprecedented level of financial support for their after-school clubs. "Each student activity group (such as the National Honor Society and the JROTC, for example) at the high school would receive $5,000,” said Arrigo, noting that there are approximately 35 such clubs at RHS.

Each of Revere High’s varsity boys and girls sports programs would also net $5,000, an augmentation in funding that will certainly bring a smile to Athletic Director Frank Shea, whose innovative leadership has resulted in increased participation and successes on the playing fields.

"Those funds could go to

[new]

uniforms, jackets, equipment, and things like that,” said Arrigo.

Each of Revere’s 11 schools would receive $10,000. "The students at each will come up with ideas about how that money is spent,” said Arrigo. "The school principals are really excited, especially the civics lesson that students are going to get, in terms of having this allotment of money and being able to think about how to spend it.”

Councillor-at-Large Jessica Giannino began an avalanche of praise for the robust state of the city’s finances, the mayor’s fiscal management and the boost that the additional funding will provide for school clubs and other organizations in the city.

"This is great news,” said Councillor-at-Large Jessica Giannino. "I’m really, really happy to see some of these appropriations. As a city councillor, one of the top three concerns I get is streets and sidewalks. It’s one of the biggest issues in our city. I can’t think of a more powerful thing to do.”

Giannino, a graduate of Revere High School, also lauded the mayor’s initiative to provide additional funding to school activity clubs.

"Some of the biggest impacts in my life have been from what I accomplished through Revere public schools,” said Giannino. "So being able to put money in the budget for these kids, these groups and clubs, for sports teams – these are things that will directly impact their lives in college and in the workforce.”

Councillor-at-Large George Rotondo also voiced his support for the mayor’s decision to allocate funds for the schools.

Ward 4 Councillor Patrick Keefe said he was pleased to see the "reinvestment in our community” with funds being allocated for streets and sidewalks in his ward and the city. He said the additional funding for school clubs "will help create more well-rounded students in our city that are going to be more competitive for the best colleges in our state and this country.”

"All my colleagues pointed out great things, when I look at this, I’d like you to pat yourself on the back, Mr. Mayor,” said Councillor-at-Large Steven Morabito. "There is a lot going back to the community and the kids.”

"I’m glad to see this, it’s great,” said Ward 2 Councillor Ira Novoselsky. "This is the first time I have ever seen this kind of money put in to so many different categories.”

Ward 1 Councillor Joanne McKenna asked the mayor whether, in addition to the street and sidewalk improvements, if the city would be addressing the issue of trees uprooting on sidewalks in certain areas of the city.

Arrigo replied that once the Council votes to put money in the Capital Reserve Fund, appropriations will be made to address additional improvements to public stairs, trees, and other sites in the city.

Council President Arthur Guinasso said the next step in the Free Cash Transfers approval process will be a Ways and Means Sub-Committee chaired by Councillor-at-Large Dan Rizzo on March 25 (5 p.m.) at City Hall.

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Malden, Everett, Chelsea, Winthrop, Saugus and Lynn

 


 
 

No Mold Found in Revere City Hall

3/15/2019

No Mold Found in City Hall Samples

The engineers and construction crews working on repairs to City Hall have announced that there was no mold found in samples taken from City Hall, including those from the second floor, which has drawn a lot of complaints because of the condition of the auditorium and council chambers.

"No mold,” stressed George Anzuoni, chairman of the Municipal Building Repair Committee. "I want to make that clear, no mold.”

The committee held its 60th regular meeting last Friday morning and shared that the samples from the second floor, including the council chambers, the auditorium and offices and other areas were negative for mold.

Chip Heitkamp, project manager with Dore & Whittier and John Abramo, clerk of the works at DelMont Construction Services, concurred.

"The tests all came back negative,” Heitkamp said.

This past week there has also been an analyst in to test the strength of the plaster on the ceiling and walls.

Crews are currently replacing the city hall roof after damage from the tornado in 2014.

While it was a short meeting, the group did agree on having copper down spouts on City Hall. Heitkamp said about 90 percent of the shingling was complete.

As part of the project they will also be relocating the HVAC system from the roof to a system on the ground. There has also been extensive masonry work done tying in the edge of the shingles with the roof.

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs or our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Malden, Everett, Winthrop, Chelsea, Saugus and Lynn 


 
 

Revere says fairwell to a long time business owner

3/15/2019
Appreciation — Remembering Alan Belinfante, Co-owner of Beach Sales

Alan Belinfante, an owner of Beach Sales, a legendary appliance store in Revere for many years, died unexpectedly on March 6, 2019. He was 73 years old.

Many long-time customers joined his relatives, friends, and colleagues in paying tribute to Mr. Belinfante at the funeral services on March 8 at Stanetsky-Hymanson Memorial Chapel in Salem.

Mayor Brian Arrigo, Council President Arthur Guinasso, and Councillor-at-Large Anthony Zambuto were among the city officials remembering Mr. Belinfante as not only an outstanding business owner, but also as a great person as well.

"My wife [Linda] knew Alan all her life and I got to know Alan as we grew up,” said Guinasso, who attended the funeral services with Linda. "We also did a lot of business with Alan at Beach Sales. We bought a 42-inch Sony television there that was beautiful. He was always pleasant to deal with and very nice to work with. The city lost a good friend. The tributes at the funeral, given to him by his daughters and relatives – they said it well: he was a wonderful man.”

Zambuto said whenever you entered Beach Sales, Mr. Belinfante would greet you warmly and respectfully. That extra-special, personal customer service, not to mention the store’s excellent products and low prices, helped Beach Sales develop a sizable and loyal following in the area.

"He’s one of the nicest people you ever want to meet,” said Zambuto, who would frequently socialize with Mr. Belinfante at the Bagel Bin on Shirley Avenue, a regular morning stop for businesspeople and a place where Mr. Belinfante held court daily with congenial conversations about news and sports. "Alan was a wonderful businessman, first class, always polite to everybody.  Frankly, you would get the best price on any appliance at Beach Sales, they could compete with any big chain. He was just a genuine good guy and it’s a tragedy that he’s gone so young.”

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Malden, Everett, Chelsea, Winthrop, Saugus and Lynn 


 
 

Grants awarded to Revere Schools

3/15/2019

Superintendent Dianne Kelly Announces Revere School Grants

The current state school funding formula has forced working class school districts like Revere to become creative when it comes to adding or expanding successful educational and extracurricular programs.

School administrators and especially teachers are always on the lookout for grant money that can be used to enhance the student’s school experience and enrich their educational experience.

At last month’s School Committee meeting Revere School Superintendent Dianne Kelly said she wanted to make the committee and city aware of the work teachers in the classroom are doing each and every day to make sure students have a quality education in Revere.

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"There’s a series of grants i want to make community and committee aware of,” said Kelly. "We always talk about how resourceful our teachers have to be because unfortunately our finances don’t permit excess as they do in some other districts so a number of our teachers have applied for and been awarded grants in the past month.”

The first grant totaling $1,500 was a health and wellness grant for the Whelan School. Kelly said this grant was applied for and awarded to the school’s physical education teachers to pay for basketballs and volleyballs for a new program they will soon start at the school.

"In addition a number of teachers across the district applied for and were awarded Revere Cares mini-grants totaling $8,000,” said Kelly.

Kelly said $900 was awarded to Revere High School for a new program that will help students reduce their stress when it comes to balancing school work with other life activities.

A grant of $1,959 was awarded to the Beachmont School to start up a new STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) club that will take place after school at the Beachmont.

A grant of $378 was awarded to the Garfield School and will help the Garfield partner with North Suffolk Mental Health for a therapy program aimed at helping new students arriving from other countries cope and manage their transition to Revere and Revere Schools.

An $840 grant was awarded to the Garfield School’s Parent Teacher Organization to plan and conduct field trips for the school year.

A grant for $940 will help Revere High’s Outdoors Club plan a two day camping trip.

And finally Revere Cares awarded the Seacoast School $3,210 to have Deana’s Educational Theater conduct performances that helps kids talk about issues associated with relationship violence, bystander intervention and cyber bullying.

"We are Very thankful for Revere Cares and their generosity but also to the teachers that took the time to submit applications and went the extra mile,” said Kelly.

Finally there was a $7,500 grant from Project Lead the Way to expand its science programs at the Susan B. Anthony, Garfield and Whelan Schools and another $12,350 for the Beachmont School so Project Lead the Way can expand its programing to students there.


 
 

M. Celata's former agent sells highest two family in Revere's history.

3/15/2019


This is a story I like to post because it is about a former real estate agent from my office. I like to think his knowledge had something to do what he learned at M. Celata Real Estate while he was practicing here!!!

Way to go Gary, I knew you had it in you

$800,000 Two-family Home Makes Revere Real Estate History as Most Expensive Ever Sold in City

According to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) a Revere Realtor set another real estate record in Revere’s real estate history – the sale of the most expensive two-family home in Revere for a record high $880,000.

Realtor Gary Ferragamo, of the Ferragamo Real Estate Group, a division of Keller William Realty just sold the record-breaking property at 624 Malden St. with 4,312 square feet of living space. The original listing price was $899,000.

"This recent record-breaking sale is a very beautiful and spacious two-family in an quiet section of Revere. There were not many comparable sales up in this price, but I knew this one was worth more and I proved it. After over 20 years in real estate, I have learned that there are a few things that determine price and value, no just comparable sales,” said Ferragamo.

"To this day, Revere is still one of the best kept secrets on the Eastern Seaboard,” said Ferragamo. "This city has it all, nationally recognized newer schools, beautiful new parks, wonderful restaurants, the Registry of Motor Vechiles office, shopping, huge commercial retail giant chains, such as BJs, UNO Pizza, Market Basket – and oh something very rare, a pristine beach.

Ferragamo is the same Revere Realtor who also sold the city’s first $1 million dollar single-family home in 2015.

As always, M. Celata is here to service communities with all their real estate needs. In Revere, Winthrop, Lynn, Everett, Malden and Chelsea.


 
 

Letter to the Editor for Revere Journal

3/15/2019

Letter to the Editor

On Waterfront Square Affordable Housing

Dear Editor,

I am writing to applaud the March 6 article about the new 51-unit, mixed-income building being constructed at 571 Revere St. that will offer 32 affordable rental units and 19 workforce rental units. According to the developer’s website, of those 32 affordable units, six are for folks who make 30 percent of area median income, and the other 26 are for folks who make 60 percent of area median income. That means these units are going to working families who are spending way more than the recommended 30 percent of their income just to pay rent.

Talking to people on the campaign trail, the increasing cost of space in our city is the top issue I hear about. This is an issue that affects everyone — the business owner who rents their storefront, the family renting an apartment, or a homeowner facing rising property taxes. As prices increase, there is a fear that the neighborhoods and businesses we grew up with are going to disappear in the face of this rising prices.

It is great to see that even while market-rate buildings are going up on Revere Beach, projects like the one at 571 Revere St. are also being built to make sure that folks aren’t forced to move out of our city. I’m running for City Councilor because we need more leaders in our city who are open to new ideas, and fight to find innovative ways to make sure that development in our city works for everyone.

As always, M. Celata is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Malden, Chelsea, Winthrop, Saugus, Malden and Lynn 


 
 

MBTA seeks input on Proposals of rate hikes

3/14/2019

MBTA Seeks Input on Proposals


Seeks Input on Proposals As part of its Better Bus Project the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) is seeking opinions from bus riders on three new proposals for bus lines in Revere.

Proposals include changes to Route 411, Route 424 and Routes 455 and 459.

The MBTA is seeking comments through March 13 online at MBTA.com. Changes to the system are expected to take place Sept. 1. The goal of MBTA officials is shorter wait times on all lines.

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If the proposed changes are implemented by the MBTA, Route 411 would provide only midday service to the Jack Satter House. There would be no change in service on Route 411 on Saturdays but there would be no service on Sunday.

For Eastern and Essex – Haymarket or Wonderland, Route 424 the goal is more reliable service between Boston and Lynn. The night service will route to Wonderland instead of Haymarket. These weekday changes allow for a shorter wait time. It would result in a local bus and subway fare instead of an express bus fare.

The MBTA states that there will be 21 new passenger trips and 20 passenger hours saved each weekday.

Realizing the importance of linking Boston and the North Shore, the MBTA is also proposing to remove Route 459 and invest more resources in the Route 455. The changes would result in the reduction of a 20-minute wait time, but there would be added a 10-minute walk from Bell Circle to the Wonderland Station. There would be no changes for the weekend service on Route 455.

The Better Bus Project is the first step in efforts to improve bus service and the system as a whole. It is a key part of a $8 billion modernization work, which includes replacing subway fleets, upgrading tracks, signals, and switches, reinventing our bus system to reflect changing demographics, replacing our fare collection system, and bringing all of our assets to a state of good repair.

"During the analysis period, we reached out to the communities most impacted by gaps in service and schedules. This included discussions at regional public meetings and meetings with community groups and stakeholders, through feedback submitted to our online survey, and by speaking with riders at bus stops and stations,” said MBTA spokesman Kenneth Green.


 
 

Traffice, Traffic Everywhere

3/14/2019

Traffic, Traffic Everywhere

A recent national report confirmed what those of us in the Greater Boston area have known all-too-well for all-too-long: That by some measures, traffic congestion on our metropolitan roadways is the worst in the entire nation and among the worst in the world.

Traffic congestion in Boston and its environs no longer is confined to the usual morning and evening rush hours during the work week. We seem to be getting closer and closer to a reality of traffic jams, 24/7/365.

And heaven forbid that there is road construction or an accident, which can make a bad situation nightmarish.

What is especially aggravating about this reality is that the Big Dig, which we still are paying for, was supposed to alleviate what had been legendary traffic tie-ups that had plagued the Greater Boston area for decades.

We endured the travails of the Big Dig throughout the 1990s, but were promised that when it was done, all of the aggravation, plus the billions and billions of dollars in cost overruns (that we commuters still are paying for via fare increases on the harbor-crossing tolls and tunnels when the feds refused to pay more than the billions they already had committed to the project) all would be well-worth it because Boston traffic would be a breeze for the foreseeable future.

Yet here we are, barely 15 years past the Big Dig’s completion, and traffic is worse than it ever has been.

The failure of the Big Dig to deliver on its promise of reduced traffic congestion is similar to the failure of the original Central Artery project that was completed in the 1950s. By the time that elevated roadway was built, it already was obsolete because there was more traffic passing through Boston each day than it had been designed to handle. Within two decades, traffic on the Central Artery was more than double its capacity.

Admittedly, just getting rid of the elevated Central Artery has been a huge boon to our downtown area. Although it was nice to drive through the city with a view from above street-level, the removal of that iron monstrosity from the landscape has been well worth the cost.

Still, it has been disappointing that the Big Dig ultimately has failed to achieve its main objective of significantly reducing traffic congestion throughout Greater Boston.

It is clear that public transportation is the only means by which our traffic problem will be alleviated. Unfortunately, the MBTA and its commuter rail lines are woefully unprepared to make even a dent in the traffic situation

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Malden, Everett, Chelsea, Saugus and Lynn

 


 
 

Yves update

3/13/2019
For me, there's a lot to love about this business. The independence, the freedom, the houses, the potential income, the knowledge, the connections, and the people. But the one thing I love most of all, the one thing that's even better than a large commission check, is the feeling of KNOWING that my client is happy with the results I produced. For me, knowing that I delivered their needs to them is more satisfying because when I get this feeling I know I have a client for life. THAT is my ultimate goal here, life long business relationships.  I do everything in my power as a real estate agent to get my clients what they need so they can feel proud to say they used my services. Your recommendation is my greatest compliment, and at M. Celata it's all about exceptional service that is not easily found. 
Call me for your real estate needs @ 617-319-3151
As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to support the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Malden, Chelsea, Everett, Winthrop, Saugus and Lynn.

 
 

Revere faires well in frist major snowstorm.

3/7/2019 1:36:10 PM

Revere Fares Well in First Major Snowstorm

The month of March truly came in like a lion as Revere residents faced late-winter snow in the form of back-to-back storms over the weekend and into Monday.

After getting 5 inches of snow on Saturday, Mother Nature brought close to a foot more of the white stuff during a storm that started late Sunday and continued through Monday afternoon.

Revere Supt. of Schools Dianne Kelly heeded the forecasters’ warnings and made the decision to call off school for Monday, making the "no-school” call early Sunday.

From all reports, the Revere DPW drew high marks for their snowplowing and street-clearing efforts. The amount of snow exceeded the predictions of most TV meteorologists’ who looked for 6-9 inches of snow in the Boston area.

Mayor Brian Arrigo said he was proud of the DPW, 311, and public safety personnel for their efforts in keeping Revere residents safe and getting the streets ready quickly for vehicular traffic.

"As our students enjoyed their first snow day of the year, our DPW, 311, and public safety personnel were hard at work during the snowstorm,” said Arrigo. "I’m proud of our team’s diligent effort, working tirelessly around the clock to make sure our roadways were clear and safe for residents.”

Mayor Arrigo also acknowledged the efforts of Revere 311, an instrumental department during snow events. "Our 311 Call Center received a record number of calls on Monday, responding to 334 calls,” said Arrigo. "It’s important residents continue to utilize this service so we can accommodate the needs of as many residents as possible. More importantly, it helps us identify areas in the storm that may need more attention.”

Ward 4 Councillor Patrick Keefe lauded the DPW’s efforts, stating that their efforts throughout the storm were "terrific.”

"Like most seasons, that first major snowstorm always catches everyone off guard, but they [DPW] did a terrific job with this storm,” said Keefe. "I live on the hills and the plows were here early and often. You can always judge by the number of calls you get, and I didn’t receive one negative call on this last storm, and this was the biggest storm of the season.”

Spring is just around the corner with its official start on March 20. Another sign that the seasons are changing is the start of Daylight Savings Time this Sunday (March 10) at 2 a.m., with residents set to move their clocks ahead one hour. If you are thinking about buying or selling our spring market has also started.

 


 
 

Cocillors look at regulations for AirBnB

3/7/2019

Councillors Look At Regulations for Airbnb

Ward 4 Councillor Patrick Keefe said there are more than 100 Airbnb rentals throughout the city. Keefe’s goal is to enact legislation to regulate Airbnb properties and create revenue for the city.

"The issue is in [Council] sub-committee at this time,” said Keefe. "We’re reviewing the ordinance with the city solicitor and a couple of department heads in an effort to bring it forth.”

Airbnb regulations in Boston, Cambridge, and New York City are being reviewed as Revere moves towards adopting similar procedures.

"We’re trying to create a limit on Airbnb properties per year so there are not people purchasing large properties just to use it for Airbnb,” said Keefe. "We’re also looking at the local tax options.”

Keefe said while there are current regulations for rooming houses in the city, Airbnb falls in to a different category.

"There are over 100 units being used for Airbnb in the city,” said Keefe. "What’s happening is that the city is not getting any benefit from it. And we have very little ability to manage it, with no ordinance in place. This would give us the ability to help manage and regulate it, and give the true Airbnb users the ability to generate additional income, but pay the taxes would be due to the city. It would also insure that they’re running a proper establishments.”

Keefe said that there are five new hotels coming to Revere "and to say we want to have a hotel industry in our city and then allow anyone to circumvent that with an Airbnb – that doesn’t really protect your hotels.”

"It’s hard to court the hotel business and tell them to spend millions of dollars to construct new hotels and say, ‘oh by the way, we’re going to allow someone to pay no taxes to operate [Airbnb properties] near you with zero regulations.’”

 

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Chelsea, Malden, Everett, Winthrop, Saugus and Lynn.


 
 

Neighborhood Developers to Host Board Leadership Boot Camp

3/7/2019

Neighborhood Developers to Host Board Leadership Boot Camp

After having a successful debut in Chelsea last year, The Neighborhood Developers (TND) is bringing its Board Leadership Boot Camp to Revere beginning Thursday, March 7 at Revere High School.

Mayor Brian Arrigo and Sen. Joseph Boncore will be the featured speakers at the opening session.

Kyla Alterman, Revere community engagement manager for TND, and Vincente Sanabria, director of community engagement and collective impact, will lead the four Thursday night sessions where members of non-profit organizations and local residents can learn about fundraising, reading a budget, leadership, board functions, governance, and meeting skills.

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The last session of Boot Camp will include a networking night with local boards and organizations.

"We did the first Boot Camp in Chelsea and this year we’re having it in Revere,” said Alterman, noting that TND headquarters are on Gerrish Avenue in Chelsea, but there are TND office locations at all of its properties in Revere.

Alterman said more than 50 people attended the Boot Camp in Chelsea. Between 50-60 people are scheduled to participate in the Revere Boot Camp.

"The idea of the Boot Camp is to help train local residents to take a more active role in their community through leadership on non-profits board or in city government,” said Alterman. "The goal is to inspire and also prepare them to seek out those opportunities. We also help connect residents to these opportunities. The purpose is to engage more local participation in non-profits in Revere.”

Other guest speakers at the sessions include former Chelsea City Councillor Matt Frank, TND board member Charlene Bauer of Metro Credit Union, North Suffolk Mental Health CEO Jackie Moore, and TND Lead Financial Coach Anne Auerbach.


 
 

Affordable housing units are slated for Revere

3/7/2019

Affordable Housing Units are Slated for Revere

Last week, Gov. Charlie Baker,  Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, and Housing and Community Development Undersecretary Janelle Chan announced support the creation of 643 new rental housing units in the Commonwealth, including 397 units of affordable housing.

Some of those units will be built in Revere by The Neighborhood Developers (TND) at 571 Revere St.

The planned development is a 51-unit, mixed-income new construction project located near the beach and Waterfront Square. 

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"These will be the only affordable housing units in that area,” said Rafael Mares, executive director of TND. "We feel this is a nice compliment to Waterfront Square.”

The Neighborhood Developers currently has 86 housing units in Revere. Department of Housing and Community Development is supporting the project with federal and state low-income housing tax credits as well as subsidy funds. 

The City of Revere also is supporting the project with local funding.  When completed, the project will offer 32 affordable rental units and 19 workforce rental units. Units will range from one-three bedroom units.

The awards represent an investment by the administration through more than $45 million in direct subsidy, and the allocation of more than $22 million in state and federal low-income housing tax credits.

 "We will continue investing in the production and preservation of affordable housing here in Massachusetts to meet the needs of residents across the income spectrum and support the continued growth of our economy,” said Gov. Charlie Baker. "Since 2015, we’ve infused more than $1 billion in the affordable housing ecosystem, from new production to the rehabilitation of existing private and public housing stock, and we look forward to working with our partners in the Legislature to pass our Housing Choice Legislation into law, which will help communities advance new housing production and facilitate long-term, forward-thinking planning.”


 
 

Real Estate Academy

3/6/2019

The real estate academy class for the month of March is off to a good start in spite of the inclement weather.  Two snow storms to disrupt our classroom but we have hearty New Englanders attending.

If you want to learn to become a real estate agent, contact Celata Real Estate Academy at 781-289-7500 and ask for Maureen Celata.


 
 

Water nad Sewer Discounts for Seniors

3/1/2019

News Briefs

Water and Sewer Discount for Seniors Expands for 2019

Mayor Brian M. Arrigo announced an expansion in the City’s Water and Sewer Senior Discount program that begins Feb. 15.

Under the new discount qualifications, eligible property owner/occupants who use 30,000 gallons of water or less over a 12 month period will earn a 30 per cent discount in the form of a credit toward their next billing period.

"This is an entirely new discount category that encourages water conservation and increases the value of the discount at the same time,” said Mayor Arrigo.

Other features of the discount program remain intact.  Those who use between 30,001 and 70,000 gallons earn a 20 per cent discount, and those who use over 70,000 gallons earn a 10 per cent discount.

"Our objective is both to help seniors with their water bills, but also to help people realize the real benefits of water conservation,” said Mayor Arrigo.  "There are many simple ways that people can use less water in their everyday routines.”  Most common among these are simple steps such turning off water faucets while brushing one’s teeth or collecting rainwater to water gardens and flower beds.

"People should also make sure they are not wasting water through undetected leaks,” said the Mayor.  "Residents who suspect that their water bills are higher than they would expect should contact the City’s water department to help determine whether there might be a leak issue.”

The discount will be applied to one billing period per year.  To qualify for the Senior Discount program, an applicant must be the owner of record and occupy the property in question.  The applicant or spouse must turn 65 during the calendar year to which the discount will be applied.  An applicant will be required to provide a valid Massachusetts drivers’ license or other official form of identification that includes the date of birth and property address, or additional documentation.

Applications will be available at the Water Department or can be obtained online through the City’s website www.revere.org beginning Feb. 15.  Applications must be completed and returned no later than June 30 of the calendar year the discount is in effect.

The discount percentage is determined based upon the total consumption at the applicant property during the previous year.  That percentage amount is then multiplied by the current Water/Sewer rate and produces a credit toward the applicant’s subsequent water bill.

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Chelsea, Everett, Malden, Winthrop, Saugus and Lynn. 


 
 

Mottolo Post and Demaino's Restaurant Team Up.

3/1/2019

Mottolo Post #4524 and Demaino’s Restaurant Team Up

For years it was known as Casa Lucia, a function facility at 61 Lucia Ave. Then it was sold to the Joseph Leon Mottolo Post #4524 more than a year ago for as the new home for the post.

Last Wednesday afternoon at the Licensing Commission meeting a marriage took place between the Mottolo Post and DeMaino’s at Casa Lucia. From now on the Mottolo Post will be on the lower-level with its own small room to rent while DeMaino’s will run a function business on the top-level, entirely separate from the post.

"It’s been quiet over the past 10 years and it’s going to be business as usual,” said Commissioner Linda Guinasso.

There is a parking lot for 25-30 cars with the building. The first floor function hall holds 110 people and the second floor hall holds 305 people. It was noted that overflow parking at St. Mary’s was sometimes used.

The License Commission granted a permit for the alteration of the Leon Mottolo Post and an all alcohol license granted to D’Maino’s.

Leonard D’Maino, who has had a restaurant for 47 years in Revere, said there will be catered functions, weddings, showers, bereavements but it will not be a restaurant.

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Chelsea, Malden, Everett, Winthrop, Saugus and Lynn.


 
 

DeLeo Announces Green Works Resilient Communities Investment

3/1/2019

DeLeo Announces GreenWorks – Resilient Communities Investment

House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo announced a new initiative to invest $1 billion over the next 10 years to help communities across Massachusetts adopt technologies – including clean energy, energy efficiency, and climate change resiliency measures – that cut greenhouse gas emissions, fortify infrastructure and reduce municipal costs.

The proposal – known as GreenWorks – builds on a long-standing House approach providing concrete tools directly to communities with an immediate impact.

"This long-term investment will help Massachusetts cities and towns build sustainable and resilient communities,” said Speaker DeLeo, (D – Winthrop).  "Not only will cities and towns have the ability to cut greenhouse gases and lower long-term energy and operating costs, but they will adopt Massachusetts-made innovative technologies and put people to work on cleantech infrastructure projects.”

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These competitive grants are for cities and towns to fund projects including, but not limited to energy efficient buildings, solar, microgrids, energy storage, electric vehicle charging stations, or resiliency infrastructure. Under the proposal, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs will administer the grants through its agencies.

"Under Speaker Deleo’s leadership, the GreenWorks plan represents an exciting opportunity to pursue innovative approaches to funding clean energy, energy efficiency, and climate change resiliency projects that will make a real impact in cities and towns across the Commonwealth,” said Representative Thomas A. Golden, Jr. (D-Lowell), Chair of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities, and Energy. "I applaud the Speaker’s strong commitment to advancing Massachusetts towards a clean energy future, and I look forward to productive conversations in the House.”

Speaker DeLeo unveiled the legislation during a visit to the Greentown Labs Global Center for Cleantech Innovation. Located in Somerville, Greentown Labs is the largest cleantech business incubator in the United States. Since its founding in 2011, it has graduated more than 170 companies with more than 86 percent of them still in operation.

"Greentown Labs’ mission is to support cleantech startups and help get their technologies to market,” said Emily Reichert, CEO of GreenTown Labs. "We’re excited to learn of Speaker DeLeo’s new GreenWorks plan and eager to see the positive impact it will make on deploying cleantech and clean energy solutions across the Commonwealth.”

"NECEC commends Speaker DeLeo for his leadership on helping cities and towns across the Commonwealth accelerate their transition to a clean and resilient economy,” said Northeast Clean Energy Council President Peter Rothstein. "Creative steps towards addressing climate change need to be taken now, and the legislation announced today will allow Massachusetts communities to invest in and deploy the latest innovations in clean energy. The timely economic and environmental benefits of GreenWorks grants will be felt immediately, while also expanding the Commonwealth’s market signals over the next decade, embracing cost-effective investments in leading edge clean technologies.”

"ELM welcomes Speaker DeLeo’s announcement.  The Commonwealth has so much to gain from proactively investing in resiliency and sustainability – and so much to lose from inertia,” said Environmental League of Massachusetts President Elizabeth Henry.  "We look forward to working with the Speaker and the Legislature to craft an effective program.”

"Supporting communities – large and small – to reduce carbon emissions though energy efficiency and clean energy initiatives is a smart and powerful solution,” said Sue Coakley, Executive Director of Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships (NEEP). "NEEP applauds efforts to fund Massachusetts community leadership to provide inspiring and impactful building decarbonization solutions, and look forward to assisting these efforts.”


 
 

Revere Chamber of CommerceHolds State of the City Breakfast

3/1/2019

Revere Chamber of Commerce Holds State of the City Breakfast

by Marianne Salza

The Marina Restaurant and Bar At The Wharf was crowded with business leaders and local officials during the Revere Chamber of Commerce State of the City Business Breakfast with Brian Arrigo, on Feb. 26. Chamber Executive Director Wendy Millar-Page described the ever-growing membership of the Chamber and her fascination with the information regarding Revere’s future developments.

Mayor Brian Arrigo with the Revere Chamber of Commerce (RCOC) members. In the front, from left to right, Maria Brito RCOC board member, Patty Pace RCOC treasurer, Melinda Cashman RCOC board member, and Kim Corliss RCOC Secretary/Clerk Back. In the back from left to right, John Bonaparte, RCOC board member, Wendy Millar-Page RCOC Executive Director, Steve Williams, RCOC board member, Karen Gallo, RCOC President, Steve Snyder, Vice President EBNHC and breakfast sponsor

"We want to do creative, fun networking events,” said Millar-Page, who encouraged members to participate in more Chamber events. "We’d love to have a diverse group of folks involved in the Chamber of Commerce.”

Millar-Page introduced Mayor Brian Arrigo, who addressed the rise in the retail economy, and the continuous growth of the city, which includes two hotels currently under construction on Revere Beach, and a family community center at the Garfield Elementary School.

"At long last, Revere is setting the pace, not lagging behind. Developments are a reality,” Mayor Arrigo said. "Revere is on a roll, absorbing some of the growth that we’ve seen in our region. Solutions will evolve from far-sighted political leadership and vibrant businesses that resist narrow-minded thinking and decision making.”

Mayor Arrigo thanked businesses for their contributions to the local community, and encouraged bold ideas that will cultivate the successful progress of Revere.

Join the Revere Chamber of Commerce for its Lunch & Learn event, "Understanding 2019 Changes in Human Resources and Payroll for Small Businesses,” on Thursday, March 28, noon, at The Four Points Sheraton, 407 Squire Rd. 

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Malden, Everett, Chelsea, Winthrop, Saugus and Lynn.


 
 

Veterans Organizations get Discount on Licensing Fees

3/1/2019

Veterans Organizations get Discount on Licensing Fees

There are three veterans’ organizations in Revere and each one is struggling with membership numbers with older veterans dying off and younger veterans not joining their local post.

For the past few years all the posts have been paying $1,300 a year in license fees to the city. Ward 2 Councillor and veteran Ira Novoselsky made a motion during a recent City Council meeting for the fee to be cut in half. The council agreed with the motion and the mayor agreed it was a good idea. Last Wednesday afternoon the Licensing Commission agreed but Chairman Robert Selevitch took it one step further and slashed the license fee to $500 for a year.

"It’s something we as a city should be doing to help out veterans and their organizations,” Novoselsky said. "It shows support and gives some community engagement.”

Don Swicker of the Mottolo Post acknowledged it would help.

 "We are struggling,” said James Sintra of American Legion Post 61.

 "We should do as much as we  can for out veterans,” said Commissioner John LaCroix.

As always, M. Celata Real Estate is here to service the real estate needs of our surrounding communities ie… Revere, Malden, Everett, Chelsea, Winthrop, Saugus and Lynn.

 


 
 

Danielle Gahagan come back home!

2/27/2019


Danielle finally comes home to M. Celata Real Estate after several years in the private sector.  She is a welcomed re addition to our family.  Danielle is fully equipped to deal with many facets of real estate and especially the rental market.  This is not to say that Danielle will not accept your home to be sold because she is very good at this as well. 

So if you are seeking an Agent to help you buy, sell or rent, please contact Danielle at 617-593-8303.


 
 

Revere community Rallies Around Teacher and Coach Joe Ciccarello- Following Tragind Home Fire

2/22/2019

Veterans Organizations get Discount on Licensing Fees

 


 
 

Mayor Arrigo says State of the City is Strong in Positive Address

2/22/2019

Mayor Arrigo Says State of the City Is Strong in Positive Address

Mayor Brian Arrigo, beginning his fourth year as the city’s chief executive, said the state of the city is "strong” during his Annual State of the City Address Feb. 7 before a large audience at the Susan B. Anthony School Auditorium.

Arrigo highlighted some of the achievements of his administration, including the city achieving its highest bond rating in history, but added that "we are not done.”

He said "with the support and cooperation of our City Council and our School Committee, we continued Revere’s progress, now in 2019, our City is thriving.”

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Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito had the honor of introducing Arrigo. She praised the mayor and other city leaders for having done ‘’a phenomenal job in really setting the tone and creating an environment that is very welcoming to your residents, but really welcoming to others who want to grow a business here, start a business here, and think about the opportunities here in this city.”

She also noted the many successes in the Revere school district, especially in mathematics and the sciences. 

"This is a night to reflect the values in the hard-working people that are here in this community that care so much about the future of Revere,” said Polito. And while it’s great that you have a strong mayor who cares deeply about this community, not only because he graduated from high school here, his roots are here, the father of two young boys who are growing up here – he cares deeply about you and he cares deeply about the next generation of people who call Revere home.”

Arrigo made some announcements within the speech, including the launch of pilot program "using the Garfield School as a true community center where our residents can enjoy the gym, the swimming pool, and attend classes in a variety of interesting topics.”

Arrigo also announced that the City will unveil a new website "that will make it even easier for anyone to do business with the city.”

He said the City intends to convert an old senior shuttle van in to a Mobile City Hall, "where residents will be able to do everything from pay a bill to get a library card.”

Arrigo noted the accomplishments of the Revere school district, saying that "the quality of our students directly reflects the quality of our teachers.”

He signaled out the excellence of Revere High School advanced placement calculus teacher Erin Cronin. "In the past two years, all of her students have passed the AP Calculus exam,” said Arrigo.

Arrigo recognized four Revere students, Questbridge Scholarship winners Julia Tran (Dartmouth College) and Tran Nguyen (Washington and Lee) and Posse Foundation Scholarship winners Seba Ismail (Bucknell) and Ebrar Yilmaz (Bryn Mawr) for their academic successes.

Jaedan Wixon, a second grader at the Hill School who won a charity drawing for lunch with Mayor Arrigo, was delighted when the mayor called upon him in the audience.

"He [Jaedan] said he thought it was cool to be mayor,” Arrigo told the audience. And on this memorable evening, thanks to the mayor’s stirring and thoughtful speech that some called "brilliant” in its execution, it was "cool” to be Jaedan Wixon.

The mayor received a prolonged standing ovation at the conclusion of his address.

Some city councillors said the mayor delivered one of the most outstanding addresses in many years.

"I thought it was an excellent address to the city,” said Ward 1 Councillor Joanne McKenna. "I really liked the way he individualized certain people like Erin Cronin and the students. It made it more of a personal touch. I think his community center idea at the Garfield School is wonderful. Anything for the schools, I think is great.”

Councillor-at-Large Jessica Giannino said, "I was very happy to hear that our city is in such a great state, which I attribute to the leadership we have. We’re very lucky to have great leadership as well as the work the Mayor’s Office and the Council have done as a collaboration over the past couple of years.”

"I’m really happy to hear that we’re in a really good place and I’m excited to see some of the new things coming forward such as the possibility of a mobile City Hall, a community center at the Garfield School, and some other great resources for our residents,” said Giannino. "It was a great speech, a wonderful night for the city and a very positive night, and it was great to have Lt. Gov. Polito join us.”

Ward 5 Councillor John Powers chose a baseball reference to laud the mayor’s address and the progress the city has made during his three years in office.

"I think for the past three years, the mayor has been out there making sure the bases were loaded, and in his State of the City Address, he hit a home run and drove it out of the park – nothing but positive things are happening in the city right now,” said Powers.


 
 

Silvia Caceda joins M. Celata Real Estate

7/1/2015
Silvia Caceda formally from another real estate agency here in Revere has joined the M. Celata Real Estate Family as a top producing agent. M. Celata Real Estate is thrilled to have her.
My husband and I came to Boston to live from Peru.  When we came to Boston we needed to find a home and during that process I realized this was what I wanted to do as a career, help people find homes.
I studied and got my real estate license in 2005 and immediately affiliated with Prudential Cordano Realty and remained there for several years.  After Prudential Realty closed I joined Stonehurst RE Group located in Revere for another several years.  I bring ten years experience to M. Celata Real Estate.
Over my ten years in business I have  helped many buyers to purchase their homes.  This process makes me feel happy to see my client's faces when  they receive the keys to their new home.
 I have also assisted many sellers, investors and landlords to fulfill their needs.  It has been very rewarding to me as a professional not only to provide these services but to become friends with my clients.
My preferred areas of service include north of Boston but I have shown and sold properties in all of Massachusetts.
I speak fluent English, German and Spanish is my  native language. If you have real estate needs I would love to help you either buy or sell.  Please contact me at 978-767-6147.

 
 

Tatiana joins M. Celata Real Estate in June 2015

7/1/2015
Tatiana immigrated form Russia and is hoping to capture the Russian population to help them with their real estate needs
 
I am on another sharp and exciting turn in my career where once again I challenge myself.  Why real estate?  Well, I enjoy meeting and working with different people, passionate about new knowledge, like to serve people with high quality outcomes and the real estate business provides me with opportunity to exercise all of this on a daily basis.
 
My personal experiences are first  as an organic chemist I was employed with scientific research institutes of Oceanography, oil and chlorine industries for more than 20  years in Russia.  Worked independently and led groups of scientists.  Following the fall of Communism I opened the first successful private business in a major  industrial city, which is still operational now.  Twenty years ago I immigrated to the US, where I worked in the Human Services field, assisting mentally and physically challenged youth with advocacy, coordination and guidance in their education, sports and employment opportunities.
 
As a young woman I was educated at an internationally recognized university with my major in Chemistry then graduated school with a PhD in Organic Chemistry.  Came to the states and earned an MBA from Simmons College and in October 2005 completed Executive Mediation Training Program and certified Mediation Works Incorporated (MWI) in Boston.
 
As a divorced woman with 2 children ages 3 and 6 when I immigrated to the US I understand the importance of hard work, honesty and giving my all to what ever I encountered.
 
I am new in the real estate business, but not in the world and I am confident that with profound knowledge in real estate, with my rich life's experience and exceptional set of skills, I will provide outstanding service to my clients.
 
Please do not hesitate to call me for any of your real estate needs.  You will be in good hands with me and  my team at M. Celata Real  Estate to accomplish your real estate goals.  I can be reached at
781-462-5050 or

 
 

Danielle Lozzi joins M. Celata Real Estate in June

7/1/2015
After taking the real estate pre-licensing class at Celata Real Estate Academy, Danielle passed with flying colors and has affiliated with M. Celata Real Estate to become a practicing Real Estate Agent.
M. Celata Real Estate is thrilled to have her.
 
With more than 20 years administrative experience, Danielle has been a top executive assistant for two multi-billion dollar companies starting at the national retail chain and then to the leading healthcare insurance company in Massachusetts.
 
Personal goal setting is important to Danielle and she has accomplished much of what she set out to do.  First one was to own her own home which was purchased in 2007.  Together she and her beau have been able to rehab it from top to bottom, a total labor or love!
 
After a long hiatus from school, Danielle went back to college and graduated in May 2014 with a Bachelors in Liberal Arts with a Specialization in Child Fitness and Health from Lesley University.
 
Goal oriented and not afraid to take on something new, Danielle recently got her real estate license in May of 2015.
 
Her work ethics speak for themselves.  Earning a black belt in Karate indicates her commitment, dedication, focus as well as discipline. Hardworking, trustworthy and persistence is just the tip of the iceberg.  Integrity is one of the utmost importance to Danielle  and she is proud to join the M. Celata Real Estate family knowing everyone shares the same principles.
 
So if you would like the assistance of a hardworking individual to either sell or buy a home, Danielle is your gal.  Please contact her at 617-285-0667.
 

 
 

Dario Quiroz joins M. celata Real Estate

7/1/2015

My name is Ivan Dario Quiroz,

I’m mostly known by my middle name Dario because Ivan usually refers to my father.  I have a wonderful wife Vanessa, three fantastic children Izayah, Angelee, and Isaac, and two dogs named Lady and Violet. Needless to say my home is action packed and I love it! We recently purchased our home here in Revere.

 I am fluent in both English and Spanish. I have been in client services and general management for over 10 years from small consultative sales to big box retail. In this time I have learned that consistent success in any customer centric business comes from:

-          Transparency, be honest and thoughtful in all interactions.

-          Integrity, do the right things right. Even when no one is
           watching
 
-          Positivity, is contagious and there is a silver lining in every dark cloud.                      

-          Passion,  a true passion for people. This is what drives me!

All of my experience and attributes are what lead me to real estate.  I look to use this expertise to support clients in what can be the largest and most intimidating purchase or sale they are involved in.  So let’s work together to achieve your goals and make your real estate dreams come true!

Please feel free to contact me @ 857-928-2223 for all your real estate needs.


 
 

Leigh Stimolo joins M. Celata Real Estate

7/1/2015

Leigh and her husband Kevin Labbe joined M. Celata Real Estate as a team. M. Celata Real Estate is have to have be part of the big team.

A fresh new agent with attention to detail and luxury.  Leigh Stimolo focuses on high end communities such as Bay Village Newbury Street, Back Bay, Cambridge and quint beach communities on the North Shore including the Point of Pines, Revere Beach, Swampscott and Marblehead.  Leigh is a media producer with Harvard University and has experience with photography, interior design and renovation projects.  She and her husband, a real estate agent and general contractor, Kevin, Labbe, partner on projects and are a perfect match for anyone seeking a complete package for investment property and key residential locations.   Please contact Leigh at 617-953-0398 for all of your real estate needs.


 
 

Sonja Moskal from Wintrhop joins M. Celata Real Estate

6/30/2015
M. Celata Real Estate is pleased to announce the addition of Sonja Moskal as one of our newest real estate agents.
 
Sonja was born and brought up in Antwerp area of Belgium, where she studied tourism and languages and loved her job as a travel agent.  She immigrated to the United States and for the first 10 years was mostly devoted to starting a family and raising her 2 daughters with her husband.
 
Sonja then started to work for Just Planes, and internet sales company in Winthrop where she takes care of the customer's needs as a part-time shipping manager.
 
Missing interaction with people, she decided to join the real estate business by earning here license thru classes she took at Celata Real Estate Academy.  She got her license on April 1, 2015 (no joke)!
 
Being new to the real estate world may not sound ideal to you , but with an excellent and experienced team behind her, and her promise to give 120% to her customers and clients, she hopes you will give her a chance to provide you with an outstanding buying, selling or renting experience.
 
Sonja can be reached at (857) 222-7471 for any of your real estate needs.

 
 

Al Blasi affiliated with Revere School Systems for years

11/11/2014
 

Al Blasi was synonymous with Revere High School baseball for more than four decades. He helped student-athletes learn all aspects of the game – hitting, fielding, pitching, bunting, and running the bases.

He was as an expert in baseball, a master of the fundamentals who knew how to teach the game and make it fun.

So many Revere baseball players looked at him with reverence, admiring how someone could bring a love of the game to practice each day whether it was in pre-season in March or the final week of the season in late May. Al Blasi clearly enjoyed coaching baseball and we’re so fortunate that he graced our high school baseball program for all those years.

But Al Blasi – the man, the father, the schoolteacher – was also a giant in our community. He brought that same energy and drive in to the classroom where his students and colleagues admired his dedication to his job and his commitment to the teaching profession.

Al Blasi touched so many lives in a positive way in this city. His players will look back with fond memories of his coaching and fatherly advice.

We agree with our superintendent of schools, Dr. Paul Dakin, that Mr. Blasi should be honored for his great contribution to our high school athletic program. We are sure that Dr. Dakin will find just the right way to pay tribute to Al Blasi, the beloved baseball coach and teacher.


 
 

Arthur T. Market Basket and Revere's own Hollywood Ending

11/11/2014

Back in mid-August, I was on vacation, sitting in a coffee shop in Hollywood, California, opening the morning newspaper when I was astonished to see a front page story about the battle back home for control of the Market Basket grocery empire—a battle that had begun weeks before when I was still in Revere.

I had first read about the fight when the news broke that Arthur S. Demoulas had toppled Arthur T. Demoulas and seized control of the company. By nearly all accounts, including those of many of my high school students who live in Revere and work at Market Basket, Arthur S. was poised to dramatically reduce employee benefits and all but eradicate the fairly generous profit sharing plan that Arthur T. had installed some time before. The battle had almost instantly turned nasty with workers walking off the job demanding that Arthur T. return to the helm, and with Arthur S. going as far as to banish Arthur T. from a country club in which the corporation held ownership.  All the while, rather than opening its doors, the new Market Basket set to open in Revere had been left only to languish, empty; a sad symbol of corporate strife.

All of this had left me profoundly dismayed.

Arthur S. and many of those at the top level were already multi-millionaires and now they wanted to wring even more money out of the company? Make no mistake; I’m no class warrior. From what I have seen, with rare exception, rich people become rich through intelligence, discipline, and above all, hard work; so if they want to pay themselves handsomely, more power to them.  But at what point is enough just about enough? Are you really going to "increase shareholder dividends” by cutting the benefits of your long time Produce Manager? You’re going to further enrich those at the very top by reducing the raise of a 16-year-old whose just trying to scratch together some extra cash for the weekend? I thought, how many Ferraris can you drive; how many yachts can you sail? The whole saga had left a bad taste in my mouth, and I had read little since back at that time.

Having been travelling for much of the weeks that followed, I had lost track of the Market Basket struggle; that is, until that August morning in Hollywood when I opened the Los Angeles Times and was shocked to read that the unthinkable was happening. Whereas in the past when non-union workers walked off a job in protest, they usually did so only to later be replaced by other, often desperate, workers. In the case of Market Basket, an entire community had actually rallied behind Arthur T. and the workers themselves.  Not only had the workers in effect gone on strike, but also in a stunning turn of events, legions of customers had actually defected from Market Basket vowing to join the fight to reinstate Arthur T.  The workers’ cause had gone viral on social media and people everywhere were boycotting the stores. The Market Basket drama had become a battle cry for an entire wounded middle class, and the eyes of the nation were upon the outcome. Economists as far off as Hollywood were weighing in with how they had never before seen a community support local workers with such sheer determination; and as a result of all this, the scales were beginning to tip. Without customers, Market Basket stores were now in disarray and hemorrhaging money. Millions of dollars were being lost weekly. Vendors were pulling the plug on the Arthur S. regime, and both store shelves and parking lots were left empty.

David had shown up for the fight of his life, and Goliath’s knees were buckling.

With renewed interest, I followed the story eagerly for the next few weeks and was further heartened to read that Arthur T. was ultimately able to prevail, at least in that he was able to buy out the controlling interest of Market Basket and restore himself as CEO of the chain.  For once, the workforce had become the victor, greed the vanquished; and I watched the news as both workers and customers, an entire community in fact, joined together in celebrating their company’s comeback, and in heralding the return of a CEO who apparently cares more about his employees being able to retire with a modicum of dignity than with polishing the chrome on a new G6.  For the record, I certainly don’t envy Arthur T.

He is now cast in the role of Atlas, burdened with the onerous task of trying to meet vast (but hopefully not crushing) debt obligations, while still trying to give his employees fair pay and benefits. For what it’s worth, in the end, Arthur S. and his crew walked off with well over a billion dollars—a number so staggering it is well beyond my imagination.

Good luck to them.

But meanwhile, while so many across the nation watched, something much bigger happened.  As the new Market Basket has finally opened in Revere, a city that can surely use the jobs and opportunity, it occurs to me that Arthur T., along with the indomitable workers and customers of Market Basket, delivered something sorely missing from far too many in today’s brutal economic landscape: Hope.

And by my ledger, that’s priceless.


 
 

Anthony Natale Joins M. Celata Real Estate.

7/2/2014
Anthony Natale is a full-time RE/MAX Andrew Realty Services Realtor, dedicated to providing his customers and clients with the highest level of service and integrity. Forward-thinking and results-oriented, Anthony takes a proactive approach to real estate by offering honesty, professionalism and the latest technology, innovative marketing tools and services needed to achieve maximum exposure and maximum results in today's competitive marketplace.
 
Whether you're looking to buy or to sell, put Anthony's dedication and expertise to work for you.

 
 

Groundbreaking on New Stadium

4/30/2014
 

Officials Hold Groundbreaking on New Stadium

April 30, 2014
By
City and state officials converged on Harry Della Russo Stadium on Monday for a groundbreaking that will usher in a brand new Stadium with new amenities such as a turf field and a running track.

City and state officials converged on Harry Della Russo Stadium on Monday for a groundbreaking that will usher in a brand new Stadium with new amenities such as a turf field and a running track.

City leaders broke ground on the Harry Della Russo Stadium project on Monday afternoon, proclaiming the long-overdue overhaul as a major contribution to the revitalization of Broadway.

"This state-of-the-art Stadium plan is another step forward in our overall plan to revitalize our downtown district,” said Mayor Dan Rizzo.

The new Stadium plan will include a regulation track, a new turf football/soccer field, new bleachers, restrooms, new locker rooms, a new concession stand, two new basketball courts, two new tennis courts, a new press box and a field house.

The project will work hand-in-hand with the new Hill School that is being build immediately to the East of the Stadium and which will share a unique plaza area with the Stadium. The school had a groundbreaking earlier this month.

One of the major accomplishments will not only be having an all-weather turf sports field, but also having a regulation running track.

"This will be the first time in the City’s history our student athletes will have a fully regulation track in Revere,” said Rizzo.

Both Rizzo and Supt. Paul Dakin said they hoped that the new Stadium would not only serve the young population, but also that of other ages as well.

"This is something that will be useful for our sports teams, but also for people of all ages,” said Rizzo, envisioning daytime walking clubs or morning adult exercise groups.

Dakin said it will present an opportunity for older adults to model the healthy lifestyles that are being taught to young people in the fight against childhood obesity.

"I think us older folks and adults in here walking and exercising will model some of the things we want our children to model and that we are teaching them in the fight against childhood obesity,” he said.

He also said it would lead to an activity area in the central part of the city, rather than the traditional exercise area of Revere Beach.

Richard Sullivan, secretary of the executive office of environmental affairs, said the project presents residents with a better quality of life.

"The fabric of a community is the open spaces and parks opportunities a community has to offer its residents,” he said.

Already, the old concrete block walls – circa 1930 – have been torn down to make way for a less prison-like ornamental fence.

"That’s a 100 percent upgrade already,” said Revere High School Athletic Director Shaun Hart. "It looks so much more spacious in here without the wall.”

The contractor for the project is Heimlich Company and the project should be completed this October.

 

 
 

The Biggest Loser comes to Planet Fitness in Revere

4/3/2014

Planet Fitness to Host ‘The Biggest Loser’ Call

April 2, 2014
By

The Planet Fitness at Northgate in Revere will serve as the New England outpost for a casting call to NBC’s ‘The Biggest Loser’ reality television show.

It’s the second year in a row that the casting call will be held at the Revere gym, said owner Tim Morrissette.

"This year should be even more exciting because they are bringing two trainers out from The Biggest Loser ranch,” he said. "We feel ‘The Biggest Loser’ and Planet Fitness are perfect partners. We are unlike any other gym in the country because we’re a place where people can work out no matter what their weight is and not be judged. That’s part of the culture at this gym. We’re definitely proud of this and that they asked us to do it for a second year in a row. They didn’t have one in the Boston area for a few years and we’re glad they came back and chose our location for the Northeast region.”

The casting call will take place on Saturday, April 12, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Morrissette said to expect long lines, as last year’s casting call had lines out the door.

He said the format is that they call people in 10 at a time, and interview them in a group. If they see any prospects, they call them back for a second interview at another location.

"People who come down should expect a long line and a little bit of a wait,” he said. "But they should also expect that they have a shot at getting on the show. Everyone had a great time last year and as I walked through the line, I talked with people from Maine, Philadelphia, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Connecticut. There are numerous locations across the country, but this will be the only location in the Northeast. It should bring a lot of people from all over into Revere


 
 

Revere New Deal is loved by Phantom Gourmet

4/3/2014

Phantom Gourmet Loves New Deal

April 2, 2014
By

R1The Phantom Gourmet television show will be featuring one of Revere’s well-known food establishments, New Deal Fruit, 920 Broadway, on an upcoming episode. The Phantom will highlight the Italian groceria’s outstanding sandwiches, delicious fruit, and family atmosphere at the popular store. Pictured on the day of Phantom’s visit to the store are, from left, Yano Petruzzelli Jr., Yano Petruzzelli Sr., Nick Petruzzelli, and Domenic Petruzzelli, with videographer Sean Finley (backround) of the Phantom Gourmet show. "We’re the freshest store in Revere,” said Yano Sr. "We have a Farmer’s Market here every day.”


 
 

Revere Riverside Condo Project on Hold

3/28/2014

Riverside Condo Project Held in Committee

March 28, 2014
By

Concerned citizens packed the Joseph A. DelGrosso City Council Chamber at the Zoning Sub-Committee meeting Monday evening to continue a public hearing on the possible construction of a residential condominium building on Thayer Avenue.

29 Thayer Avenue Development, LLC has asked the City Council for special permit to build a 42-unit condo building in the marina area near the Pines River in the Light Industrial District. Attorney James Cipoletta, who represents the developer, along with Civil Engineer Dan Salvo and Jennifer Conley, from Conley Associates Transportation Planning and Engineering, were in attendance to discuss issues such as parking and an increase in traffic.

Salvo reported that engineers decided to build 109 parking spaces for the proposed condo building and the marina, which will also be in control of the developer. Current parking requirements state that there must be two parking spaces per unit resulting in 84 spaces. An additional 25 spaces in a gravel lot will be constructed for additional vehicles and boat trailers for the marina. Salvo also said that they planned on building a three-foot sea wall around the property as well.

Another anticipated report was the traffic study done by Conley Associates, which performed the 2006 traffic study. Experts determined that during peak commuting hours (between 7-8 a.m. and 5-6 p.m.) there would be an increase in about 28 vehicle trips per hour on any given weekday in the most recent study (down 5-10 percent than the original 33 trips they accounted for in the 2006 study). The study was based on comparable data from hundreds of data pinpoints in similar developments. One variable that was left out of this study was the potential for casino traffic.

Cipoletta ended his presentation noting that the condo development was the best possible scenario for the area. He argued that if the Council did not approve the special permit, the community could see industrial properties like factories and warehouses or low-income apartment buildings.

Emotions ran high when the floor became open to residents and Council members. Residents had differing opinions on whether or not the luxury condo building would be the best addition to the neighborhood. While there were several people who said they would be potential buyers for the property, most of the crowded room was opposed to the condo development.

Ricci LaCentra and his wife, Loretta, live near the proposed development and say that the developers have not been good neighbors. Ricci LaCentra said his family has lived in the Riverside community for more than 60 years and that this would be detrimental to his neighborhood.

"They have been bad neighbors from the start,” said LaCentra.

His primary concerns are the increase in traffic in his neighborhood along with potential sewage issues. Adding 42 units would increase the sewage flow in the aging system. He has collected 149 signatures of Riverside residents against the proposed development.

Another argument against the development comes from School Committee member, Donna Wood Pruitt. She argued that the development would not be marketed to empty nesters, like the developers suggested, and instead would be ideal for families with single parents.

"There’s a day care center nearby and a park. It would be perfect for a family with small children,” Wood said, noting that the schools cannot take an influx of more children.

The School Committee is dealing with crowded schools, and she said it cannot handle more students in overflowing classrooms. Superintendent Paul Dakin is also openly against the Thayer Avenue condo development.

However, Councillors Ira Novoselsky, Richard Penta, and Council President Tony Zambuto spoke out in favor of the development.

Councillor John Powers who represents that Ward, said he, like his neighbors, opposes the condo development, and said he would not be voting for the special permit.

As soon as he made that announcement, the room erupted in applause.

Councillor Stephen Reardon said he would hold the request in committee until Councillor Charlie Patch, who was absent from the meeting, returned.


 
 

Voters back Mohegan Sun

3/13/2014

Voters Back Mohegan Sun

February 26, 2014
By
All smiles on Tuesday at the celebration party at Suffolk Downs were, from left, Chip Tuttle, COO of Suffolk Downs; Mitchell Etess, CEO of Mohegan Sun, and Mayor Dan Rizzo.

All smiles on Tuesday at the celebration party at Suffolk Downs were, from left, Chip Tuttle, COO of Suffolk Downs; Mitchell Etess, CEO of Mohegan Sun, and Mayor Dan Rizzo.

The referendum vote Tuesday featured a huge voter turnout for a cold day in February, yet nearly an identical result as last November, save an increase of 4 percentage points for the pro-casino vote.

There were 7,169 ‘yes’ votes (63.2%) cast for the casino and 4,172 ‘no’ votes (36.7%) cast against the casino. There were 11,341 votes cast for a turnout of 44 percent.

That was in contrast to last November’s Revere vote where 11,083 total votes were cast and 6,567 voted ‘yes’ (59.2%) and 4,232 voted ‘no’ (38.2 percent).

In the end, between the two votes, there was a slight gain for the ‘yes’ and, actually, a decline in the ‘no’ votes – that despite a great deal of organizing and campaigning against the casino in this go-around.

Buoying the results heavily were returns from Ward 6 – particularly precincts 1 and 2, which vote at St. Mary’s Church. Those two precincts registered 1,221 votes for the casino alone.

No other precincts in the city even reached 500 votes in the affirmative, with Beachmont’s 1-1 (Beachmont VFW) hitting 470 votes.

The top ‘no’ vote was also in Beachmont’s 1-1, where there were 308 against.

Overall, the mood was one of pandemonium all day in the city, and it erupted as the results came in and the victory became obvious.

At Suffolk Downs, in the Topsider Room, Mayor Dan Rizzo, Suffolk Downs Owner Richard Fields and Mohegan Sun  wore large smiles as they moved through a large crowd of enthusiastic supporters.

The fate of the casino now lies in the hands of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, which announced this week that it will likely make a licensing decision at the end of June.


 
 

Horse Barns to be moved

3/12/2014

New Horse Barns Planned for Eastie Not to Be Off-site

March 12, 2014
By

A plan submitted by Suffolk Downs to state environmental regulators calls for the horse barns in Revere to be relocated to the East Boston side of the property, built out under the existing Grandstand and in new buildings adjacent to the track on the Boston side – a plan that eliminates the previously idea of putting the barns in an off-site location and redeveloping the open land.

The plan, however, is contingent upon Mohegan Sun receiving a casino license from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC).

The plan is also much different than plans outlined to community members and the MGC last fall, when it was announced that horse operations would likely be located off-site and horses would be trucked into the track. That idea  isn’t addressed in the newest filing and is now secondary, Suffolk Downs COO Chip Tuttle said.

"Our first choice is to keep the barn areas as close to the racetrack as possible,” he said on Tuesday. "If that doesn’t work out, we’ll look at off-site options. We’re reducing the size of the barn area by consolidating a lot of stables within the existing Grandstand in what is essentially decommissioned space. This plan would be a significant improvement for rainwater and runoff. It’s our first choice. The horsemen have expressed concerns with off-site stabling and we’re trying to honor that concern…It’s definitely preferable to be on-site if we can make it work.”

Tuttle said that Boston Mayor Marty Walsh knows about the plan, and Suffolk Downs expects to begin speaking with him about it soon.

"People on his team know and it’s not a surprise to him,” he said. "We anticipate we’ll be talking to them in the near future.”

Boston Mayor Walsh was not immediately available for comment, as he is at a conference in Washington, D.C.

Tuttle said the barn plan doesn’t rule out the redevelopment of other parts of the Suffolk Downs site.

In the filings, released on Tuesday afternoon in the Environmental Monitor online government publication, Suffolk Downs announced the plan to move the barns to Boston as a way to improve water quality in the Sales Creek and the Rumney Marsh Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC).

"Under current permits, the racehorse facilities north of Sales Creek have the potential to discharge process wastewater into Sales Creek (part of the Rumney Marshes Area of Critical Environmental Concern [ACEC]) during significant storm events,” read the ‘Change of Project Notification’ filing. "This Project will consolidate racehorse and other racing facilities on the Boston portion of the property (thus eliminating racehorse-impacted flows to Sales Creek), reduce the Production Area from which process water may be generated by 80 percent, and reduce impervious area by over five acres. Therefore, the Project will improve water quality in both Sales Creek and the ACEC.”

The crux of the project would involve renovating 200,000 sq. ft. of space on the first and second floor of the existing Grandstand for use as stables and horse support areas. The new Grandstand stables would house 740 horses.

There would also be three new 13,512 sq. ft. horse barns, each containing 42 horse stalls for a total of 126 stalls. Those buildings would be constructed adjacent to the Grandstand, though no specific site was identified and all plans are now just conceptual.

An additional 4,000 sq. ft. quarantine barn would be constructed in the same area, as well as a 720 sq. ft. mortality barn.

The plan also identifies the siting of a 400,000 sq. ft. support area for racing operations. It would include track material storage, a staging area for maintenance equipment and horse trailers, parking for maintenance/stable employees, feed trucks, horse trailers and training/exercise areas for horses.

An accompanying 12,000 sq. ft. racetrack maintenance building will be built adjacent to either the racetrack or Grandstand, according to the filing.

The plan indicates any wastewater from the animal holding areas, feed areas and barn areas will drain to the ground or be piped into the Boston Water and Sewer Commission (BWSC) sewer system.

Included in the plan is the renovation and interior improvements to the existing Clubhouse/Link building, which covers some 20,000 sq. ft., so that the first floor of the Grandstand can be transformed into a horse barn. All of the accessory functions on the first floor now would be consolidated into the renovated Clubhouse.

"The Project involves abandoning the existing Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) located on land to be leased to Mohegan Sun Massachusetts, renovating the grandstand to accommodate horse stalls, and some other elements intended to improve racetrack operations on the Boston portion of the property,” read an overview of the project.

If Mohegan Sun were to get the Casino License, Suffolk Downs indicated that it would like to begin construction in July 2014, complete site improvements and Grandstand renovations in April 2015 and complete the maintenance building in August 2015.

The plan to locate the horse barns to East Boston was a new revelation when released on Tuesday, as previous plans spoken about last fall to the MGC called for off-site horse barns. Suffolk Downs COO Chip Tuttle told the MGC in late November that the track was in "very real” negotiations that could  lead to relocating the barns and training areas off site.

"The use of off-site stabling and training centers is fairly common practice at East Coast racing venues,” he said at that time.

Initial reactions were hard to come by.

Celeste Meyers of No Eastie Casino said the plan proves that there will be impacts on East Boston with a Revere casino.

"This is just another prime example of how a casino at Suffolk Downs will impact East Boston despite claims to the contrary. It also illustrates the reality that this is a Suffolk Downs Casino plan with all of the key players still intact despite the Mohegan Sun header on the application.  Naturally this raises concerns that Suffolk Downs – via the steps they have taken to maintain the details of the application as confidential, may have some lofty and potentially detrimental plans for the East Boston side of the property that will have further far reaching negative impacts. It seems that the developers are doing their darndest to hide the reality that their goal is to guarantee that East Boston winds up with the crap end of the deal


 
 

Dollars down the drain

3/12/2014

Winthrop Avenue Sewer Pipe Project Has Doubled in Cost

March 12, 2014
By

The Winthrop Avenue sewer pipe replacement project has doubled in cost over the last several months, and will end up being more than $700,000 over original estimates, according to DPW Director Don Goodwin.

Goodwin told the Council on Monday that the complex replacement project got more complicated as things went on, especially with the MWRA – which ordered the City to take on more costs by moving water pipes that, inexplicably, were located above the collapsed sewer pipe.

"The project has cost us double what we anticipated initially mostly because of what the MWRA has required,” he told the Council. "They actually made us take their two water mains up and out of the ground and put them temporarily on the sidewalk…It’s been an ugly project for us and the engineers.”

Goodwin said the project is running at $1.6 million right now, which is far and above the $900,000 estimates that came last September when the collapse was discovered. Much of those costs had to do with the complexities of navigating in a 30-foot trench, as well as dealing with the bureaucracies of the state government. However, a substantial amount of money was spent on police and DPW details to watch the temporary machinery while the project was mostly at a standstill from September through January. During that time period, police and DPW details totaled more than $400,000.

The crux of the problem, Goodwin said, is that the sewer pipe lies underneath the water mains – which he said should never have been allowed many years ago.

"The question that begs to be answered is why they allowed them to put these two MWRA transmission mains above the sewer line when the other side of the street is free and clear,” he said. "I would suggest that if we allowed them to put the mains in there pre-1970s, then we must have approved it. It makes no sense, but it’s what we have to deal with…We were looking initially at this being done by Thanksgiving. When they ran into the issue of the transmission lines, it became a very, very severe problem.”

One piece of good news is that the project is on schedule now and will likely be done prior to the start of the Little League season – given that the repair project is currently blocking access to McMackin Field.

"By April 9, they expect to have this all completed,” said Goodwin.

The schedule is as follows:

•March 10 to March 17 – remove and replace 18-inch sewer line

•March 18 – Shutdown sewer bypass pumps

•March 19 to March 27 – relay 24-inch water main (includes pressure and chlorination)

•March 28 to April 7 – relay 16-inch water main (includes pressure test and chlorination)

•April 8 to April 9 – street paving and restoration

•April 9 – completion

The City was able to secure a $2 million loan from the state’s Emergency Revolving Loan Fund administered by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to pay for the project. However, no one expected to use the full amount of the borrowing. That, however, looks to be the case now. The loan will be repaid by ratepayers through the Water & Sewer Enterprise Fund.

Council President Tony Zambuto said the costs are a bitter pill to swallow, but something that was hard to avoid in such a difficult repair.

"This is not an easy project,” he said. "The hole is 30 feet deep. Anyone who has done utility work knows…when you’re down 30 feet in a trench, then it’s not an easy job. It’s an astronomical task to do this work…This is what it was – an emergency project


 
 

City rating upgraded

3/12/2014
Upgrade to AA
March 12, 2014
By

Mayor Dan Rizzo and Revere Director of Finance George Anzuoni spoke at the City Council meeting Monday night about the City’s recent Standard and Poor’s Rating Servings Report upgrade.

The City of Revere was granted a bond rating of AA- with a stable outlook, an upgrade from last year’s A+ rating. The city is now in a high-grade investment category, meaning that Revere can save substantial amounts of interest charges when borrowing and issuing municipal bonds for large projects

It also contracts the City’s rating just 15 years ago when Revere was at junk bond status and on par with war-ravaged El Salvador.

The Standard and Poor’s Rating Service rates the financial stability of countries, corporations, and municipalities across the globe. It took into account the City’s finances, future economic outlook, educational expense and debt service to determine its marketability to investors and businesses. According to S&P’s definitions, Revere is at a "very strong capacity to meet financial commitments.”

In the report S&P stated:

"The stable outlook reflects our opinion of Revere’s strong budgetary performance, supported by very strong liquidity and budgetary flexibility. For these reasons, we do not expect to change the rating within the outlook’s two year time frame.”

Mayor Rizzo told councillors that with this upgrade Revere will be able to be more competitive in the financial markets. The new rating will allow the City to borrow money at a lower interest rate, resulting in millions of dollars in savings.

"It may seem like just another agenda item but this is huge,” says Mayor Rizzo. "This is going to have a long term, significant impact.”

Both Mayor Rizzo and Anzuoni said that the money they will save would go to City services.

They hope the upgraded rating will help them when it comes time to build a new high school and update infrastructure around the Revere


 
 

Historic Vote for Revere

3/6/2014

Will Voters Hold ‘em or Fold ‘em?: Historic Vote on Mohegan Sun Slated to Take Place on Tuesday

February 19, 2014
By
Mayor Dan Rizzo introduces Mohegan Sun CEO and President Bobby Soper during a neighborhood forum at the Jack Satter House on Monday. Soper was in town on Monday making the rounds, and he participated with other officials in the forum - which is one of the last of many that have taken place over the last two months.

Mayor Dan Rizzo introduces Mohegan Sun CEO and President Bobby Soper during a neighborhood forum at the Jack Satter House on Monday. Soper was in town on Monday making the rounds, and he participated with other officials in the forum – which is one of the last of many that have taken place over the last two months.

The Special Election for the casino referendum already has a major head start in voting this week as some 601 absentee ballots had been filed with the Election Department by Tuesday afternoon.

There was still time to file more absentee ballots, but the 601 figure is 100 ballots more than were filed in the overall City Election on Nov. 5, which contained a casino ballot question and a general election for City Council and School Committee.

Election Commissioner Diane Colella said they are preparing for the Feb. 25 election and have already seen a flurry of activity, including the large numbers of absentee ballots.

She said there were 25,711 registered voters in the Special Election


 
 

Casino Opponets Rally

3/6/2014

Casino Opponents Focus on Problems at Last Week’s Rally

February 19, 2014
By
Joe Catricala, coordinator of Don’t Gamble on Revere, is flanked with yellow ‘No Casino’ signs last week.

Joe Catricala, coordinator of Don’t Gamble on Revere, is flanked with yellow ‘No Casino’ signs last week.

With larger than life yellow ‘No Casino’ signs posted last week at f the First Congregational Church – signs that showed Paul Revere yelling "The Problems Are Coming” – anti-casino advocates decried the problems they see on the horizon if a casino is allowed in the upcoming Feb. 25 referendum vote.

With Revere’s Joe Catricala of Don’t Gamble on Revere leading the rally last Tuesday night, Feb. 11, about 50 curious visitors stopped in to hear messages from local and national anti-casino advocates. Included on the agenda was a former Congressman from Connecticut, a national anti-casino advocate from Lawrence and a concerned Revere mother – as well as members of the local clergy.

"We want you all here tonight to hear the other side of the casino story, the side that hasn’t been told so much,” said Catricala at the outset of the forum.

That’s exactly what members of Don’t Gamble on Revere and several Revere clergy members have been trying to do over the last month .

Whether at small rallies, the larger interfaith community gathering last Sunday afternoon at Immaculate Conception Church following services, doing active phone banking or hosting weekly information sessions – the anti-casino side has shown up for this campaign.

It’s a side to the casino discussion that was seen in East Boston last year, but something that never really emerged in Revere. "We did not organize in November,” said Rev. Nick Granitsas of First Congregational. "We feel we failed Revere then. We came to a conclusion we needed to organize this time around. We are ashamed we did not fight harder in November, but this time it has created the most unbelievable unity amongst us. We are trying to do what we should have done before. It’s with humility we come before the community to organize as one.”

Catricala said having a second chance allowed his organization to stand up for what they believed was right.

"If you see one of your friends kicked and don’t do anything about it, but later feel guilty about not doing anything, you would say to yourself that if it ever happened again, you would do something,” he said. "We have our chance again and that’s why we’ve stood up now.”

Robert Steele, a former Connecticut Congressman (1970-1975) who lives in the area where Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods are, said casinos kill communities. He said he knew so many people who were excited for the casinos to come into Connecticut, but are now sorry they ever advocated for it.

"Let there be no mistake about it, the only people who benefit from a casino are the owners of a casino,” he said, pounding his fist on the lectern. "The idea is simple; stick a straw into your community and suck as much money as you can out of it.”

Another speaker, Les Bernal, the national director of Stop Predatory Gambling (and a Lawrence resident), said he has watched the same negative story play out all over the country as it has in Revere – a casino company offering big promises, a municipality in need of money, and neighboring cities pitted against one another. He said his organization is particularly interested in stopping government-sponsored gambling – such as exists in Massachusetts.

"What’s happening in Revere is happening all over the country,” he said. "Good cities like Revere all across the country are being tricked by this very powerful lobby…One out of 10 of your neighbors will be expendable…This is a government program that ruins people’s lives and makes them useless to society.”

Also invited to the forum were organizers and volunteers Celeste Myers and John Ribeiro, who founded and still run No Eastie Casino.

Many in the audience were curious about the ballot question calling for a repeal of the gaming laws – a question that could appear on the statewide ballot in November.

Ribeiro said there are no guarantees, but he believes casinos will be repealed in the state. "With that question, no matter what stage the casino is at, the casino would close down,” he said. "It’s not a matter of if casino gambling is repealed in Massachusetts, it’s a matter of when. Eventually, you will all come to our side and casino gambling will be repealed…Once the vote is done, it never comes back before you. There are no ways to close the doors of a casino. A casino is forever


 
 

Reclaiming low lying marsh lands

8/14/2013

We Must Prepare for Rising Sea Levels

August 14, 2013
By

Benjamin Franklin coined the expression 200 years ago, "You should buy land because they are not making it anymore.”  Well, that may not be exactly true for the last 100 years,  as all the communities on the water have been reclaiming low-lying marsh land.  One just has to look at the the Back Bay and the waterfront in Boston; sections of Revere such as the Point of Pines or Oak Island or lower Revere Street that are all below sea level; or areas along Bennington Street in East Boston that are reclaimed marsh land.

What brings this to mind is the recent discussion that took place in Boston about rising sea levels.  There seems little doubt that the "if” of disastrous flooding and the loss of billions of dollars in property damage and above all, the loss of human life, from Superstorm Sandy that occurred last year has become a matter of "when” for our neighborhoods.

In Boston, the Boston Redevelopment Authority seems poised to approve billions of dollars in new construction for housing and office spaces in these very areas of East Boston and Boston that would be devastated by rising sea levels coupled with a hurricane like Sandy.  In Revere, new construction is being proposed along the beach that would be easily flooded with a tidal surge from a storm.

Revere Ward 5 Councillor John Powers has been leading the charge and has secured more than $3M in flood improvements for residents in these Revere neighborhoods.  For the normal storms, these improvements have stopped the flooding that was commonplace.  However, all bets are off with a major hurricane.

After viewing the damage in New York and New Jersey on the Weather Channel special this weekend, we urge our city officials to make sure that these new buildings are using the most up-to-date technology and water safety measures to prevent the sort of disaster that happened last fall along the coastline just a short distance to our south.


 
 

Back to School

8/14/2013

Get Your iPads: as the School Year is Gearing Up, RHS Gets Busy Handing out iPads

August 14, 2013
By

If the future of learning at Revere High School (RHS) is in the electronic world, then it will be the iPad that will be the remote control for students at the school.

This past Monday night, the line stretched out the door as parents and young people waited to go into the RHS Field House.

There was an excitement that was quite apparent as incoming freshmen looked past the registration desk to see the boxes of brand new iPad 4 computers waiting for them.

After registering, students quickly broke open the boxes and took a look at the new machines – many already knowing exactly how to use them and how useful they will be in their upcoming high school years.

As school officials at RHS get ready to ramp up operations for the first day on Aug. 27th, they are preparing for a major change in the way learning happens at RHS – that being via iPad. Through a blend of state grants and budgeted funds, the district has rolled out a plan to provide the latest iPads to every student at the high school. Some 1,700 machines were ordered, and this week students began the process of collecting and learning about the new machines.

On Monday, parents seemed just as excited about the program as the kids collecting the machines. The new technology promised to replace many of the cumbersome textbooks and unnecessary paperwork – and also would free students to spend more time at home and fewer hours doing research at a library.

"I think it’s really awesome,” said Brenda Citino, mother of incoming RHS freshman Andres Irizarry. "A lot of kids can’t afford to buy their own iPads, so this helps everyone get access to the latest technology. I think it’s great they are pushing everything out to the iPad. It’s a wonderful idea. Plus, they don’t have to bring books home anymore and it’s just much more organized for the students.”

Over the next two weeks, students from all grades will be collecting their iPads (see accompanying schedule). District technology officials were equally excited, saying this is a major change for the high school and one that potentially has no limits.

"If the teachers embrace it, it will fly here,” said Steve Staff, an assistant network administrator for the schools. "I think it can become a way to communicate with the kids like they’ve never communicated with them before.”

Added District Network Administrator John Ferrara, "This is really the first technology project we’ve hat that we won’t keep going. It’s really the teachers that will keep it moving. Having all of these iPads in student hands will be what the teachers make of it, and we have some great educators here who will utilize this to the fullest.”

The iPads have been specially programmed to block out social media websites and any other inappropriate content so that students absolutely cannot use them to access things of a non-educational nature. Students will be taking the iPads home, and parents are required to present identification and to purchase a small insurance policy so as to protect the machines if they’re damaged. Students and parents are also required to attend a short training when picking up their machines.

Having iPads at RHS is not a completely new experience.

Last year, the Freshman Academy ran a PILOT program where all incoming freshmen (now incoming sophomores) received iPads for the year. Administrators worked out the kinks in the program and ended up having great success using the new technology.

Those machines – which were iPad 2 models – will now be sent over to the Garfield Middle School, where students there will now participate in the first middle school PILOT program.

Meanwhile, students in the fifth grade at the Paul Revere Elementary and the Lincoln Elementary have been involved in a program now for nearly two years that has infused laptop computers into the classroom. Those students, however, cannot take the computers home and can use them only for limited amounts of time. Nevertheless, students and teachers at the schools have trumpeted the program as an overwhelming success.

RHS Principal Lourenço Garcia and Superintendent Paul Dakin said they were absolutely sold on the idea of moving forward with computers in every students’ hands. They both said they believed it was the way of the future and something that will be common throughout the country in only a few short years.

RHS will be one of the first districts in the state to put iPads in the hands of every high school students. However, they certainly aren’t the first.

Burlington rolled out an identical program at its high school two years ago, and Ferrara and Staff said they consulted and visited Burlington prior to rolling out Revere’s iPad program. Both said they received a lot of advice from the technology department in that district, advice that they believe will ease the transition and smooth out potential problems before they happen.

One piece of advice administrators relayed to parents this week was to get the insurance policy prior to coming to the pickup location. While parents and students can obtain the policy at the pick-up, administrators said a lot of time and frustration could be saved by getting the policy in advance and bringing the ‘proof of insurance’ form that can be printed out.

To get the policy prior to the picking up the iPad, go online to my.worthavegroup.com/ReverePS. Instructions on the website will guide parents through the process. Additionally, parents or guardians must accompany their children at the pickup, and parents must show a photo ID upon registration.

Sidebar –

All the rest of this week and into next week, the Revere High School will be teeming with students picking up their new iPads. Parents must accompany students to the pickup and must bring a photo ID. Anyone with questions can call (781) 286-8222. The following are the remaining pickup times in the RHS Fieldhouse (back entrance).

•Weds., Aug. 14th (Juniors), 4-7 p.m.

•Thurs., Aug. 15th (Seniors), 4-7 p.m.

•Monday, Aug. 19th (Freshmen), 9 a.m. – noon

•Tues., Aug. 20th (Sophomores), 9 a.m. – noon

•Weds., Aug. 21st (Juniors), 9 a.m. – noon

•Thurs., Aug. 22nd, 9 a.m. – noon

Cutline –

Incoming RHS freshman Dana Reyenger opens up his new iPad 4 Monday night at the RHS Fieldhouse as his parents, Maria Silva and Derek Reyenger, and friend, Matt Forti, look on with interest


 
 

Everett Receives Block Grant

8/14/2013

City of Everett Receives Fy13 Community Development Block Grant

August 14, 2013
By

Mayor Carlo DeMaria is excited to announce that the City of Everett was recently awarded $900,000 in Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) from fiscal year 2013.  CDBG is a program created by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to provide communities with resources to address a wide range of unique community development needs.

The CDBG program works to ensure decent affordable housing, to provide services to the most vulnerable in communities, and to create jobs through the expansion and retention of businesses. CDBG is an important tool for helping local governments tackle serious challenges facing their communities. The CDBG program has made a difference in the lives of millions of people and their communities across the Nation.

With funding from the CDBG, the City will complete various projects, the first of which are targeted specifically towards the Lower Broadway ("South Everett”) neighborhood.  These projects include roadway improvements for Bow Street, as well as roadway reconstruction, sidewalk improvements, crosswalk improvements, and improvements for pedestrian mobility within the neighborhood.  In addition, the Mayor and his administration will provide 2-3 workshops to promote a model program for business assistance and economic development for the area. The City will provide additional assistance through the program to a selected group of businesses to enact best retail practice improvements.

Also through the use of CDBG funding, the City will complete a master plan of the Commercial Triangle Neighborhood.  The area is a mix of residential and commercial real estate and the Mayor has identified it as the next prime spot for redevelopment within the City. The goal of this reimaging project is to illustrate the possible infrastructure improvements, tax money, building permit fees, and most importantly, jobs for residents that a proper redevelopment can provide.

Working with five PSS agencies the City also plans to ensure funding goes to agencies with a strong track record of adhering to CDBG program requirements, and to provide services to Everett residents, with an emphasis on those providing services to Lower Broadway neighborhood residents.

In addition, the Mayor and his administration will expand the housing rehabilitation program currently funded through HOME. The targeted houses and properties will be located in the Lower Broadway neighborhood and will include funding for 2-4 projects depending on project size. Due to expanded housing rehabilitation program and economic development initiatives, administration funding will also be provided.

"The Lower Broadway neighborhood has long been neglected from a planning perspective and is prime for redevelopment”, states Mayor DeMaria, "The CDBG Grant is making available necessary funds that will assist and address vital needs for the area. These essential dollars will help create a more vigorous and thriving neighborhood.”


 
 

War of Words on Casino

8/14/2013

War of Words on Casino

August 14, 2013
By

Mayor Carlo DeMaria’s press conference last Friday about Boston Mayor Thomas Menino’s  assertion that the Wynn Resorts is using Boston roads in their development plan has certainly raised the stakes for the Wynn casino proposal. The rhetoric between DeMaria, Menino, and Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone shows how contentious this development has become among these abutting community executives.

The people of Everett  overwhelmingly gave their support to the Wynn project when they voted in June.  But as we have mentioned previously, Everett is now in a waiting game. The State Gaming Commission will not make their decision until early next year as to which one of  three developers will be awarded the sole license for the Boston area.

Right now, time is on our side.  We again urge our public officials to dismiss this latest assertion by Boston and Somerville and demonstrate with facts and boundary lines that the Wynn Resorts proposal will share no land with either Boston or Somerville.

Words are great and we certainly want to believe what Mayor DeMaria is saying about this development being solely in Everett. However, the stakes are much too high for Boston or Somerville just to let this windfall go solely to Everett, while  putting up only a battle of words. We have no doubt they will take this matter  to court to thwart Everett’s bid if they perceive an opening to do so.

We fear that just a threat of a potential lawsuit will be enough for the Gaming Commission not to consider Everett’s proposal  as evidenced by their actions last week  with the Plainridge Race Track owners.

That is why indisputable facts are needed, not just words.


 
 

Making Everett Shine

7/31/2013

Making Everett Shine

July 31, 2013
By

In today’s newspaper are stories about how the new beautification projects outside of City Hall on Church Street as well as in Everett Square and Norwood Street are close to being accomplished.

These projects look great and to the potential investor in Everett, they signal community pride.

This community pride is what we need not only to attract new residents and businesses but maintain those residents who now call Everett home.

Like most people, when you drive through a downtown, you notice what it looks like and how it is maintained.  Many say that Boston is undergoing a renaissance.  However, if you drive through the old business sections of Dorchester, you notice how many once beautiful buildings have been neglected and this neglect just makes one want to continue onto better surroundings.

City Planner James Errickson and Mayor Carlo DeMaria are to be congratulated for bringing to fruition these projects.


 
 

East Boston House moved to make room for expanded Savio school

7/31/2013

Triple Decker Moved to Make Room for Expanded School at Savio Site

July 31, 2013
By
Construction crews move the Salesians’ residence on Bennington Street across Byron Street on Saturday. The move of the triple-decker is to make room for the Edward Brooke Charter School’s expansion of the former Savio High School. The Brooke will relocate there once construction is finished.

Construction crews move the Salesians’ residence on Bennington Street across Byron Street on Saturday. The move of the triple-decker is to make room for the Edward Brooke Charter School’s expansion of the former Savio High School. The Brooke will relocate there once construction is finished.

The moving of Salesians Boys and Girls Club Executive Director Father John Nazzaro’s house across Byron Street slowed traffic and drew a crowd Saturday.

Spectators lined the street and watched as the triple-decker at 619 Bennington St. was slowly lifted and then hauled across a city street. The entire process took most of the morning and early afternoon to complete.

Onlookers snapped photographs with cell phone cameras and recorded video of the rare sight. Many photos ended up on Facebook and some younger residents were amazed at how such a feat could be achieved.

After all it’s not everyday a large three family home is moved across an entire street in Eastie.

The house will now be permanently located in the Boys and Girls Club parking lot.

The moving of the Salesians’ residence is part of an ongoing project to develop the former Savio High School.

In February developers of the Edward Brooke Charter School in East Boston received Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) approval to convert the former Savio High School on Byron Street into the Brooke’s new home.

The $16.5 million expansion plans at the corner of Byron and Bennington Streets will allow the Brooke to move from its current location on Paris Street to the new Savio location.

In November it was announced that Diversified Project Management, Inc. (DPM), a Newton, based firm had been hired to provide comprehensive project management services for the Brooke facility in Eastie. The Commonwealth’s Designer Selection Board selected the team and the project is expected to complete for the 2014-2015 academic year.

Aside from Saturday’s relocating of one of the two Salesian houses on Bennington Street to the Boys and Girls Club parking lot across the street, DPM’s plans supported by the BRA include a major renovation to the existing 29,700 sq. ft. existing Savio building, demolish the other Salesian house at 617 Bennington Street and adding a 3-story, 13,100 sq. ft. addition to the existing school building.

Following a private developer’s decision to abandon his plans to build condos at the former Savio building last year, Brooke, which opened this year at the former home of the Salesians Boys & Girls Club on Paris Street, stepped in and bought the building.

Currently the Brooke is planning a 475 student, K-8 facility at Savio.

DPM is currently engaged in similar projects for the Codman Square Health & Education Center in Boston and for Westfield State University.

The Savio building has been empty for several years and requires extensive renovation. While the Paris Street facility is just a temporary home for the Brooke, the Savio facility will serve as the school’s permanent future home.

The mission of the Brooke Charter Schools is to provide an academically rigorous public education to students from the city of Boston and Chelsea that will ensure that they are prepared to enter into succeed in college. The school is named after Senator Edward W. Brooke, the first African-American elected to the U.S. Senate and the first and only black senator from Massachusetts. After attending Brooke alumni are have gone on to excel in high school and college, attending and succeeding in schools like Milton Academy, Boston Latin Academy, and University of Massachusetts – Amherst.


 
 

Government Center close down postponed.

7/31/2013
Shut Down Government Center Stop
July 31, 2013
By

It was no secret people in East Boston were pretty unhappy that the project to fix all the wall panels in the Callahan Tunnel would coincide with a two-year closure of the Government Center MBTA station.

However, it was announced this week that the MBTA would hold off on the closure of Government Center until work on the tunnel was complete.

MassDOT planned to close the tunnel for three months beginning in January and begin a $34.9 million project to rehab the 52-year old tunnel’s deck, curb line, gutters and replace the tunnel’s wall panels.

Residents complained that the tunnels closure coupled with the Government Center closure beginning in the fall would cause a commuting nightmare for thousands of Eastie residents trying to get back to the neighborhood during the afternoon rush hour.

The timing was particularly bad because the dual closure of the tunnel and train station would be in the dead of winter.

Senator Anthony Petruccelli, Representative Carlo Basile and Boston City Councilor Sal LaMattinasuccessfully lobbied state officials to delay the closure of Government Center until the Callahan Tunnel project was done.

"It was going to be a terrible three month inconvenience for resident of East Boston if we allowed these two major projects to coincide,” said City Councilor Sal LaMattina. "This is a win for Eastie commuters because they will still have access to Government Center until the Callahan Tunnel project is complete.”

LaMattina said he heard a lot of complaints from residents that closing the two key points of travel for residents at the same time was poor planning by the state.

"Both projects are crucial to improving aging infrastructure but I agree with residents that work downtown that having these two major redevelopment projects going on at the same time would have a devastating impact on residents,” said LaMattina.

LaMattina added that popular restaurants like Rino’s, K.O. Pies, Santarpio’s Pizza and Ecco that have all become destination spots for people on the other side of the tunnel would have also been impacted.

"There would have been no easy way for customers of these establishments to get over to East Boston if both the Callahan Tunnel and Government Center were closed at the same time,” said LaMattina. "It would have been unfair to expect our small businesses to bear the burden of these two projects going on simultaneously.”
After removing 117 wall panels from the Callahan Tunnel in December 2013 and an additional two-dozen panels from the adjoining Sumner Tunnel, MassDOT decided to remove all 2,400 panels from the Callahan.

The removal of the panels came after a 100 lb. wall panel in the tunnel fell off the wall of the tunnel and landed in the road. The panels, which date back to the 1990s, are 9 ft. by 4 ft. and replaced older panels in order to give the tunnel a better look and reflect light for improved visibility in the tunnel for motorists.

After the panel fell, MassDOT was forced to shut down the Callahan so inspectors could perform a ‘pull test’ on the panels that line the tunnel.

After the inspections it was found that 117 panels did not pass the pull test and had to be removed. MassDOT officials said the framing holding the panels in place had corroded.

The proposed work schedule includes a full tunnel closure with detours in place and posted for approximately three months beginning in January 2014, followed by an additional 4-5 months of work requiring overnight closures between 11p.m. and 5 a.m.


 
 

Everett former receiver pleads guilty

7/24/2013

Former City Receiver Pleads Guilty to Stealing: Roccia Gets Probation, Community Service and $16k Restitution Bill

July 24, 2013
By

Former city receiver William Roccia, 42, of Hollywood, Florida and formerly of Everett, pleaded guilty on June 27 in Middlesex Superior Court to a charge of larceny over $250, and has been sentenced to two years probation, 40 hours of community service and to pay restitution of $16,855 to the city.

Roccia worked for the city from 2006 until 2012 as a receiver, a position that required him to collect and track payments to city departments. As part of his duties, Roccia was charged with collecting permit fees and fines for the building department and then turning those monies over to the Treasurer’s Office.

Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan commended the investigation of the City of Everett and Everett Police Department in the case.

"Any time a public employee violates the trust of their community and taxpayers they mist be held accountable for their actions,” said Ryan, in announcing the guilty plea. "This defendant stole from the city and then attempted to quickly move to another state to avoid being caught. I applaud the work of the city of Everett and the Everett Police Department for investigating this theft of public monies.”

According to the District Attorney’s office, the theft was uncovered beginning in May 2012, after the city had hired an outside auditing firm to assist its fiscal department. At the end of May 2012, Roccia, abruptly resigned his position, giving just five days notice and moved to Florida.

In July 2012, the city started to receive calls from individuals who reported that checks they had written to the city building permit fees had not been cashed. The city and the Everett Police launched an investigation.

The investigation revealed that from January 2012 to May 2012, the building department had generated $154,000 in revenues through permit fees and fines, all of which had passed through the hands of the defendant. None of the checks that were collected during that time had been cashed and of the $154,000 generated, some $16,855 in cash fees was never recovered.


 
 

Sand Scultures at Revere Beach

7/24/2013

Sand Sculpture "Strong” Finish: Security Concerns Took Festival to Unexpected Higher Level

July 24, 2013
By

After months and months of planning for this year’s Sandsculpting Festival on Revere Beach, State Police and top state public safety officials approached the Revere Beach Partnership not long after the Boston Marathon bombings and told the organization it had to scrap it’s plans and start all over.

It was a painful blow to an organization that was breaking in a new, but capable, executive director and one that was in the final stages of planning one of the largest spectator events in eastern Massachusetts.

But the concerns were real, and State Police were worried that having everyone bunched up in a small area around the Bandstand would be inviting disaster if terrorists were to target the Festival.

And so, according to Partnership President John Hamel, they did a major re-tooling and ended up putting together a festival that probably turned out better than had there been no terrorism concerns.

"After the bombings in Boston, the State Police came to us not long after and told us we needed to change the layout of the Festival – to spread it out and move the location,” said Hamel. "That was just a few months before the Festival. We ended up having to stretch it from the Bandstand to the new pedestrian bridge. That’s a lot of space to fill, but it worked and it might be the new home for this event. It’s ironic that the biggest step forward for our event was the result of a tragedy happening in Boston. We were told to spread out by the State Police. They would have never asked us to do that, but they had to take those kinds of precautions after the Marathon. It ended up leading us to an increased footprint that surpassed our expectations…I think across all dimensions it was a success.”

What the terrorism precautions caused the Partnership to do is enlarge the festival, adding many more Food Trucks, creating a temporary promenade/boardwalk, adding a professional music stage, creating a fitness stage, doubling the fireworks display, implementing a metal detector treasure hunt and – in the process – delivering more than 500,000 people to Revere Beach on one of the hottest weekends in the summer.

"We switched gears quickly and turned it more into a Beach festival and less of a street festival,” said Hamel. "It was turning Revere Beach Boulevard into a boardwalk or promenade for a weekend and I think we succeeded. I have that Norman Gautreau picture of the Boulevard in the old days and I don’t know if that was my total inspiration, but when I thought about what a boardwalk on the Boulevard needed to look like, I thought about that picture.”

Mayor Dan Rizzo said he was impressed with the new layout and the crowd that was attracted.

"I think it was planned and carried out incredibly well,” he said. "It seemed as though the thousands of people there were enjoying themselves. I think the fireworks display on Sunday certainly rivaled any display I’ve seen. I think it showcased the city in a very positive light to those visiting our Beach, and I think that our residents should be proud of what we were able to provide over three days down there.”

Part of the success of that new layout came from adding five more sandsculptors to the competition and locating them further up the Beach and closer to the sidewalk. That not only solved some of the terrorism concerns, but also solved a frequent complaint about handicap accessibility.

Using the sculptures and enlarged musical stage as one side of the promenade, Hamel said they propped up the other side with Food Trucks, a larger kiddie carnival and other vendors/promotions.

The Food Trucks, he said, were being touted as an early victory.

Hamel said one goal was to reduce electricity and cleaning costs, and another was to increase the quality of food offered at the Festival. He said the Partnership believes they accomplished both with the mobile Food Trucks.

"For most of Friday and Saturday it was too hot to eat and some were concerned the trucks were not going to succeed,” he said. "Then as Saturday evening approached and Sunday came, I think the Food Trucks blew past every expectation they had. I think they were pleased and the crowd loved them. I think it was an absolute success and they are a winner at the Festival. We wanted restaurant quality food on the Beach and I think it was night and day with the quality of food we delivered this year.”

The key element to being able to enlarge the Festival on such short notice was the evolution of interested sponsors – sponsors who didn’t see the Festival as a charity cause, but rather as a great opportunity. Hamel said that was reflected well by the interest of GEICO Insurance.

"When I took over last year for my three-year term, I wanted to get the Festival to where it was a self-sufficient event,” he said. "I didn’t want it to be a charitable donation we had to go out and beg for, but rather a marketing investment for companies to showcase their products and services. We turned a corner with that this year. GEICO called us. That was a huge turning point. Brands are now recognizing us as a great marketing opportunity and a great cause all rolled into one.”

With that in mind, Hamel said the Partnership would soon begin going out and looking for a title sponsor next year – something they have never done before but they believe they can accomplish.

That goes to the point that the Festival is seemingly teetering on the edge of a very large growth curve. With the new layout tested and approved, and the sculptors flocking back each year, Hamel said the event is poised for national acclaim.

"Long ago it became more of a regional event and less of a local festival,” he said. "We’ve reached a tipping point this year. There’s an inflection point where an event goes towards being a national event. We’re not there yet, but I think we’re really close. At the level of quality for an organization, I think we’re moving towards being one of the nation’s premiere beach events. That’s where we’re going.”


 
 

Revere Parcel H to be developed.

7/24/2013

Parcel H Development Close to Starting

July 24, 2013
By

A Dover developer has taken one important step this month in moving forward on the massive Parcel H private development at Waterfront Square – a development straddling the new pedestrian bridge and plaza and considered a key component in the success or failure of Wonderland Station’s $500 million facelift.

The Roclid Development Group has presented preliminary plans for Parcel H development in two phases to the City’s Site Plan Review committee and is in the midst of doing due diligence on the project.

Phase 1 of the project would include 142 residential units in a building that will sit on the south side of the existing plaza next to the Carabetta buildings. That building also has plans for 35,500 sq. ft. of retail spaces on the ground floors.

"It looks to be high-end residential construction, all steel construction,” said Economic Development Director John Festa. "The breakdown there is more one-bedrooms than two-bedrooms – about a 70-30 split right now, but that could change. They’re looking to bring in some restaurants and shops to the retail portion, and they look to be more on the high end scale. I’m told they’ve heard from some real quality restaurants.”

The second phase of the proposal looks to hit on a much-needed Beach business – a large hotel under a major hotel chain’s flag.

"The second phase would be a 300 to 400 room hotel,” Festa said. "They have various flags they are considering and they are very nice flags that we’re excited about.”

The hotel development would be located on the north side of the parcel.

An attempt to reach the Roclid Group was unsuccessful, and one number listed for them was a private residence. There was no business phone number listed in obvious places, nor was there a website for the company.

They are based in Dover and are headed up by Patrick Corrigan.

EuroVest President Joe DiGangi – who is the designated developer for the entire Waterfront Square – said the plans for Roclid Group are still very preliminary.

He said they have some milestones to meet by Aug. 15th, and after that he would be better able to comment on where they’re at in pursuing the project.

Mayor Dan Rizzo said he was glad to see Roclid Group take the next step in going to Site Plan Review.

"We’ve been talking to Roclid for a year and a half now…and I’m glad some of their plans are finally coming to fruition and getting to Site Plan Review because that’s where the rubber meets the road. I’ve been to too many groundbreakings where all we end up with is the ceremonial shovels.”

Additionally, the privately-held parking lot next to Parcel H – owned by Al D’Amico – has been in the midst of negotiations with Roclid also.

"We obviously want to incorporate that at some point in the overall development,” said Festa. "There are definitely discussions going on between the parties.”


 
 

Everett's Casino chances in jeapardy

7/24/2013

Menino’s Threat on Wynn’s Casino

July 24, 2013
By

For those of us who know Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, his threat to scuttle the Wynn casino development in Everett (since it is being built on a sliver of Boston land) should be a reason for concern for officials in Everett. Mayor Menino is a politician from the old school who knows how to get what he wants — and what the Mayor wants is the casino and its revenue solely for the City of Boston.

Menino has said that since the Wynn proposal has that sliver of Boston land in the development, then Boston must be designated as a host community.  And since the Mayor is unwilling to provide a host agreement to Wynn, the Wynn proposal effectively cannot go forward.

We know that there may be more than a grain of truth to Mayor Menino’s threat, since both Steve Wynn and Everett Mayor Carlo DeMaria were careful to say in the beginning of their process in December that the Boston land was not to be used in the development. But the property lines that are in contention go back to the 1600’s and since Boston and Everett are in different counties, the ambiguity can be all the more difficult to properly adjudicate.

This action by Menino may be a small skirmish in the Boston-area casino fight.  The larger fight rests with getting a host community agreement written and presented to East Boston voters. Revere Mayor Dan Rizzo and his staff have already drawn up their host community agreement and are ready to have the Revere voters decide on the project.  We urge Boston city officials quickly to draw up  their host agreement. Wynn has come in with his proposal at the 11th hour, capitalizing on all of the work accomplished by Chip Tuttle over the past seven years. Without a host community agreement, Wynn would win by default. We are not at this juncture debating whether the casino should be built — we believe that the voters of  East Boston and Revere should decide this question.  What we are advocating is for a Boston host community agreement so this issue can be decided in a plebiscite as soon as possible.


 
 

Photos of Sand Sculpters at Revere Beach

7/19/2013
Sandsculpting Festival, July 18th
July 19, 2013
By

 
 

Sculptures to begin July 17th

7/11/2013

Sandsculpting Festival Ready to Start on July 17

July 10, 2013
By

With all of the fun and entertainment that has now become part of the Revere Beach National Sandsculpting Festival, one thing that can tend to get lost in the pre-festival publicity is the actual Sandsculpting.

However, once the show gets on the road July 17th – marking the Festival’s 10th Anniversary – it will be rather hard to miss the biggest and best field of carving competitors Revere Beach has ever seen.  In fact, some are touting the 15-person field as the largest competition on the East Coast.

"Last year we only had 10 competitors and this year we’ll have 15 sculptors in the field,” said Amanda Gourgue, executive director of the Revere Beach Partnership. "It has been exciting to add sculptors and this being our 10th anniversary, we wanted to go big. It is the most that the Revere Beach festival has ever had. We already have the most fans and now we want to have the most sculptors.”

This year, the larger field will be spread out over a larger area, giving sculptors and spectators more room to move about – and hopefully alleviating the jam-packed crowds (sometimes 10 people deep) during the weekend days.

There are six new sculptors in the competition and nine sculptors that are returning for another shot at the Revere title – a prize that is becoming more and more coveted worldwide amongst the small sand sculpting community.

Of the six new competitors, three are from outside of the U.S. – with two from Holland and one from Latvia. One of the newest competitors is Rusty Croft of California, who starred for two years on the Travel Channel show ‘Sand Masters.’ Alongside fellow Revere Beach returning competitors Sue McGrew (Tacoma, WA) and Chris Guinto (Key West), Croft starred in 25 episodes of the reality TV show detailing the life of a professional sand sculptor.

He will be joined by one of the oldest competitors on the circuit (and perhaps the sculptor with the best name), 71-year-old Amazin’ Walter McDonald of S. Padre Island, TX. McDonald has been carving sand since the early 1980s and taught his craft to many of those who now compete against him on the professional circuit. With a look that appears to be a cross between ZZ Top and the Grateful Dead, McDonald is likely to be a character and a fan favorite – much as Acapulco, Mexico native Ben Probanza has been over the last two years.

The new sculptors will be ready to do battle with three-time champion Jonathan ‘Jobi’ Bouchard (Montreal), who has proven to be one of the best sculptors in the field year after year. Jobi will be shooting for an unprecedented fourth title in a row this year.

The entire field of sculptors will include:

•Dan Doubleday (Treasure Island, FL)

•Dan Belcher (St. Louis)

•Jobi (Montreal)

•Croft (Carmel, CA) *new sculptor

•Justin Gordon (Groveland, MA)

•Chris Guinto (Key West)

•Marianne Guinto (Key West) *new sculptor

•Sandis Kondrats (Latvia) *new sculptor

•Amazin’ Walter McDonald (S. Padre Island, TX) *new sculptor

•Sue McGrew (Tacoma, WA)

•Benjamin Probanza (Acapulco, Mexico)

•Wilfred Stijger (Holland) *new sculptor

•Steve Topazio (Tiverton, RI)

•Edith van de Wetering (Holland) *new sculptor

•Lucinda Wierenga (S. Padre Island, TX)

Preparations for the competition will begin today, July 10th, as competition directors Meredith Corson and Dan Doubleday of Sanding Ovations return to the Beach to begin putting things in order. Sanding Ovations has successfully run the competition and centerpiece sculpture for several years, and they have developed quite a love for Revere Beach and the more than 500,000 fans that descend upon the area every year.

Some 350 tons of special carving sand from New Hampshire will arrive on the Beach Friday, July 12th, and sculptors will begin working on the always-popular centerpiece sculpture Saturday, July 13th.

This year, organizers aren’t yet giving any kind of hints as to what the centerpiece theme might be, though it will reflect what is happening in Revere and the surrounding areas.

"To see this year’s sculpture theme, you will have to come down to the Beach,” said Gourgue.

After four days of carving out several hundred tons of sand, competitors will begin working on their allotment of 12 tons of sand Wednesday, July 17th. This year, competitors will have four days to work on their masterpieces, with the competition winding down at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

As always, the sculptors will judge each other’s work, but not their own, using the Sanding Ovations Report Card System. They will be judging each other on the following six categories: Overall impact/Wow factor, Quality of Carving, Usage of Sand, Degree of Difficulty, Originality and Artistic Impression. There will also be a People’s Choice Award so that Festival participants have a say in which creation is their favorite.

Throughout the competition, there will also be children sand sculpting lessons that start on Wednesday, July 17th and run through Saturday, July 20th. Each day the lessons are at 10 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Interested participants need to sign up 30 minutes prior to class time and it is first come, first serve.

Lessons will be taught this year by Sandi ‘Castle’ Stirling and Raymond Poirier – both of Dundas, Ontario.

Gourgue said the competition part of the Festival is taking a step up this year and really becoming a signature event for those who compete on the professional circuit.

"I know the people who have done this competition in the past do keep their calendar clear for this Festival,” said Gourgue. "When they come once, they usually return and Revere Beach has developed a strong reputation out there, we’re told. I think it is because we’re always trying to improve things. This year we’re taking our Festival to a new level and it will set a precedent for the future. Going forward, we’ll look at whether we add two new sculptors every year or one new sculptor. It really gives us momentum.”

She also said not to forget the events surrounding the fun in the sand.

"The whole thing is going to be above and beyond,” she said. "It will be like three festivals in one. There will be the sand sculpting, entertainment non-stop all weekend long and then the extensive amount of food trucks. We’re going to have more food trucks than most Food Truck Festivals.”

For more information on the Revere Beach National Sand Sculpting Festival, visit www.NationalSandSculptingFestival.com.


 
 

Pedestrian Bridge open s in Revere

7/11/2013

Wondy Pedestrian Bridge, Plaza Opens Quietly

July 10, 2013
By
In the photo: an overview from above of the new Plaza and Pedestrian Bridge stretching from Wonderland Station to Revere Beach.

In the photo: an overview from above of the new Plaza and Pedestrian Bridge stretching from Wonderland Station to Revere Beach.

With little fanfare, the fences came down and, finally, the pedestrian bridge and plaza at Wonderland Station opened to the public last week.

Now, what looks to be the newest signature landmark for Revere Beach is ready for the eager feet of those headed to the Beach from the MBTA.

"We were substantially completed with the project in February 2013, but there were some things that were slow in coming to us like the railings and the dampening system, but they started trickling in over the last few months,” said consultant Paul Rupp. "The state building inspector signed off on it Friday, June 28th, and so, we decided to open it up to the public last week. I think it’s a very elegant and exciting feature that is added to the Beach, especially at night when it’s illuminated. There are LED lights embedded in the rails and up above too. They can be programmed for limitless combinations of colors. I think it’s pretty striking.”

So far, most Beach-goers haven’t fully discovered the bridge or the plaza. Mostly, it remains empty due to the fact that it is located in a bit of a dead zone on the Beach and also due to the fact that people are so used to crossing Ocean Avenue at grade.

That emptiness, though, is expected to change as the learning curve sets in and the larger private Waterfront Square development begins to creep out of the ground.

Those who have discovered it are shocked when they stumble upon the huge expanse of the new plaza and the miniature Zakim Bridge stretching towards the ocean. (the bridge was actually designed by the same man who designed the Zakim Bridge in Boston and is patterned after it purposefully).

"Wow!” and "Where did this come from?” are commonly heard as people walk out of the Station or the Parking Garage into an unexpected new feature.

"I think it’s awesome,” said Ashley Aguilar of Boston, who was directed to the bridge by an MBTA worker this Monday afternoon. "It reminds me so much of the Zakim Bridge in Boston. We didn’t know it was here at all. We were having trouble finding the Beach from the Station and a T worker showed us how to get up here.”

Added her friend, Jackie Fuentes, also of Boston, "I think it is really nice. It makes it a lot easier to get to the Beach, especially with kids or a stroller.”

Rupp said he had made some observations and found that people have found the bridge and do appreciate it.

"People have discovered it, and when they do discover it, they really, really like it,” he said.

The idea of putting a walking bridge to the Beach from Wonderland Station is nothing new, Rupp said, but was something that became doable only recently.

"That was a very old idea we have had floating around since I was a Planning Director for the City in the 1970s,” he said. "It was way back then that they put pedestrian access in a master plan for Wonderland. It was for aesthetic and safety reasons. It was always in the works and always something we always felt we’d do at some point. We took a run at it with this project and it succeeded.”

One of the only drawbacks to the project, however, has been the long delay – and to note, the elevators still do not function yet. Rupp said part of the problem was abiding by the rules of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (the Stimulus Bill), which funded a majority of the bridge and plaza.

"There are a lot of very customized features for the bridge which had to be manufactured just for the bridge – things like the railings,” he said. "We had to deal with the Buy American provisions of the [Stimulus], which means we had to buy everything from American companies and that led to some delays. We could have bought things in Germany and had this done six months earlier, but American was required and it was like a Catch-22.”

Now, Beach advocates and state officials are looking for ways to make use of the new feature.

Already, the Revere Beach Farmer’s Market has committed to using the plaza this summer, and they will set up there again this Thursday, and will continue there through October.


 
 

Everett's Farmers Marjket a Success

7/10/2013

Farmer’s Market Holds Successful Opening Day

July 10, 2013
By
Farmers, artists and musicians were all part of the opening day of the Everett Farmer's Market held on July 3.

Farmers, artists and musicians were all part of the opening day of the Everett
Farmer’s Market held on July 3.

Mayor Carlo DeMaria and Energize Everett are happy to report a successful opening day of the Everett Farmer’s Market, which was held on July 3rd.  Farmers, artists, musicians, and several members of the community enjoyed the beautiful afternoon.  Residents are encouraged to come and be part of the excitement every Wednesday, from 2:00-6:00 PM in Everett Square in the Municipal Parking Lot next to Braza Grill.

Market Highlights:

SNAP, WIC, and Senior Coupons accepted. Double your SNAP dollars with Market Bux.

Fresh locally grown produce from Massachusetts farmers

Specialty items such as handmade jewelry and soaps

New this year-Musician’s Corner! Performances from local musicians and artists

Children’s activities such as face painting and craft projects

Community outreach from local organizations

This week’s schedule is just as exciting! You can look forward to seeing:

Farmers

Nagog Hill Farm

Phalla’s Produce

Brandywine Farms

Specialty Vendors

Roberto’s Seafood

Unique Boutique

CN Faces

Entertainment/Community Groups

Musician’s Corner

ECHP-SAC

JCCHCE

First Baptist Church of EverettFor additional information, visit the Energize Everett website energizeeverett.wix.com/energizeeverett, call the Energize Everett office at 617-389-3365, or email


 
 

East Boston, Revere, Chelsea & Everett beat back ethanol train

7/3/2013

Global Withdraws Request for Ethanol Trains

July 3, 2013
By

When everyone was ready to give up on fighting off Global Petroleum’s Ethanol train plan, State Sens. Anthony Petruccelli (D-Eastie) and Sen. Sal DiDomenico decided to get creative.

Joining a dedicated crowd of residents from Eastie, Chelsea, Revere and Everett, they did the unthinkable – they rewrote the licensing laws to block the Global proposal and then put up the fight of their lives.

This week, after two years of turmoil, that plan came to a screeching halt as Global informed state leaders and local advocates that it was abandoning its proposal to bring in approximately 180 million gallons per year of Ethanol to Revere via trains on the commuter rail.

Global officials confirmed the news late on Monday afternoon.

"I am confirming we will be withdrawing our application to the DEP for the permit,” Global attorney and spokesman Ed Faneuil told the newspaper. "By withdrawing the application [to the DEP] we are withdrawing the application to receive Ethanol by rail at the facility [in Revere]…We are thankful to the communities of the Commonwealth for their input during the permit process and the folks on the Hill for considering our application and the officials at the various state agencies for reviewing our permit. We want to look forward to serving the energy needs of the Commonwealth in an ongoing basis.”

Grass Roots Victory

The news is being hailed as one of the largest grass-roots victories in decades, and folks like Ed O’Hara in Revere, Roseann Bongiovanni in Chelsea, Gail Miller in East Boston and Boston Environmental Attorney Staci Rubin are at the nucleus of the victory.

"It’s not every day you get to take on a Fortune 500 company and win,” said Petruccelli. "This was a big ‘Wow.’

History of the Project

Petruccelli and DiDomenico said they were in the midst of celebrating a legislative win on the Ethanol issue Monday when Global representatives paid them a visit. Faneuil told the state senators in a face-to-face meeting that Global would withdraw their request for a Chapter 91 waterways license from the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), and thus abandon the plan to bring in Ethanol trains to Revere.

From there, the news spread like wildfire.

Bongiovanni said there is a press conference wrap-up scheduled for Wednesday at the Chelsea Commuter Rail stop, where Ethanol trains would have rolled through twice a week.

The two-year saga began in April 2011 at a heated Revere Conservation Commission meeting where Bongiovanni, the Chelsea Collaborative and members of the Friends of Belle Isle Marsh expressed major concerns. At that time, Global indicated they were interested in bringing two, 60-car trains into the terminal per week – which would result in 180 million gallons of Ethanol per year. Global’s plan was to bring it at night over the commuter rail lines from the Devens Intermodal.

Not long after that, the Revere City Council held an informational meeting in which Revere resident Guida Rita Falzerone – who is also involved with the Chelsea Collaborative – spent about an hour alerting councillors and the public to the possible threat.

That’s when O’Hara got involved, noting the "done deal” statement.

For nearly two years, Global was silent on the issue while advocates, officials and lawmakers wrote letters, held meetings and even conducted a controversial six-month state Department of Transportation study on the transport of Ethanol by rail.

A Legislative Breakthrough

The breakthrough for the community in the fight came just after Memorial Day this year when Petruccelli and DiDomenico were able to re-write the Chapter 91 regulations within the State Budget – a re-write that served to basically block Global from getting its waterways license.

"We were up against the federal railroads and pre-emptive statutes that really didn’t allow local government and state government to intervene,” Petruccelli said. "That’s why we had to come up with a creative approach that was very respectful and very calculated and that’s how we proceeded.”

That budget amendment is still on the table – having passed the legislature last weekend – and is currently awaiting approval from Gov. Deval Patrick. Many are still fighting for the amendment, despite Global’s withdrawal. There is a sense that Patrick might veto the amendment, but it is still up in the air.

However, with it in place tentatively – along with a legal setback in a lawsuit Global had filed against the DEP for delaying their license – Global seemed to want to fold its cards.

Faneuil said he wanted to stress that the company had no hard feelings and believed everyone had conducted themselves professionally. For Chelsea and Revere, which both have Global terminals, it was rather odd to be at odds with the oil giant – as they have existed for years on very good terms.

"I want to mirror those comments made about Global to reflect the interactions that Global had with the entire community and the legislators, with all of them being gentlemen and gentleladies during the entire engagement,” he concluded.

Cutline -

Hailing from Chelsea, Revere and Eastie, members of the grass-roots group that stood in opposition to the Global Petroleum Ethanol train plan gathered to celebrate Tuesday morning on the commuter rail tracks in Chelsea – a spot that the Ethanol trains would have rumbled through at least twice a week during the nighttime hours. Pictured here are (left to right) Judie Dyer, Anthony Orellana, Gladys Vega, Marangely Vasquez, Roseann Bongiovanni, Jovanna Garcia-Soto, David Mussina, John Kennard, Kim Foltz, Rita Falzarano and Attorney Staci Rubin.


 
 

Malden Democrat wins the hearts of Voters

7/3/2013

Voters Like Markey for U.S. Senate

July 3, 2013
By

Revere’s former Congressman Ed Markey (D-Malden) easily bested Republican challenger Gabriel Gomez by a vote of 60 percent to 39 percent in the local vote to take his place in the elite company of the U.S. Senate.

The overall statewide vote was a little bit closer than Revere’s results, with a vote of 55 percent for Markey and 45 percent for Gomez.

However, low voter turnout was absolutely similar in Revere as it was statewide, with only 24 percent of the 25,000 registered voters showing up at the polls last Tuesday, June 25th.

In Revere, 5,946 ballots were cast, with Markey getting 3,567 – about the same number as the top vote-getter in recent Revere City Council at-large races.

Markey tore through the Revere precincts, scoring 80 percent of the vote in the areas of Ward 2.

Gomez didn’t win a single precinct in Revere, though he did come within a few votes of winning in Ward 5-1 and Ward 6-2.

With the win, Markey leaves his Congressional seat vacant. That will lead to another special election within the district – which runs from Winthrop all the way to the Metro West communities.

While many were mum on running, the field has become crowded as of late, though no one from the immediate area is considering joining the crowd.

Candidates so far include:

•Middlesex County Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian

•Medford State Rep. Carl Sciortino

•Belmont Sen. Will Brownsberger

•Melrose Sen. Katherine Clark

•Ashland Sen. Karen Spilka

An election schedule has yet to be determined due to the fact that Markey hasn’t been sworn in. It is believed that the special election would likely take place in December.


 
 

Revere celebrates 4th of July

7/3/2013

July 4th Celebration at Hill Pk.

July 3, 2013
By

The City’s Parks and Recreation Department will host a family celebration for the Fourth of July on Thursday, July 4th, at Hill Park.

The free event will last from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will feature music, pony rides, inflatables, a petting zoo, face painting, a BBQ, slush, cotton candy and entertainment.


 
 

Revere Beach Sand Sculptures scheduled for July 19th

7/3/2013

Sand Sculpture Gearing Up at Revere Beach

July 3, 2013
By

In only a few short weeks, sand sculptors from all over the world will arrive on Revere Beach and will begin entertaining the throngs of spectators with unique sand creations as part of the festival’s all-important 10th Anniversary.

Hundreds of thousands of spectators are expected to hit the Beach from July 19th to the 21st to take in the now-famous sculpting competition on its 10th year in operation.

Already, Amanda Gourgue, new executive director of the Revere Beach Partnership, said they have some exciting changes to build on what was an eye catching and fun festival last year.

"John Hamel did an amazing job when he came in last year and revamped the things the Partnership had done with the Festival,” she said. "He brought in excitement and new ideas and features. The way we’re looking at it is we have a lot of new things on the Beach and I am hoping to bring more energy this year for our 10th Anniversary.”

One of the new features this year will be the addition of the trendy food truck industry. Several food trucks will be stationed on the Beach, including those of Revere residents James DiSabatino (Roxy’s Gourmet Grilled Cheese) and Rich Cambriello (Bone Daddy’s Burgers).

Back will be the kids rides, community exhibits and arts and crafts. However, the sculptors will be spread out a little more this year.

"We will expand the sculpting area,” said Gourgue. "We want to make it a little more roomy and stretch it further down the Beach so it’s not so crowded. That’s a lot of people right now in a little area.”

One area of major emphasis will be the Interactive Learning Center for kids – an idea that has not yet been fully realized.

"I’m really excited about the Learning Center and I’m really trying to build it up this year,” she said. "We’ll have the Franklin Park Zoo there and the Museum of Science has interest. I’m excited because I really want an educational component. Also, because the Piping Plovers are already on the Beach, we’re going to have a program about them with the DCR Ranger.”

Additionally, last week the Partnership announced that Minelab metal detectors will be on the Beach for the Festival and will offer Beach-goers an opportunity to go treasure hunting.

Minelab, who’s earned a reputation among treasure hunting enthusiasts as manufacturer of "The World’s Best Metal Detection Technologies,” will enlist beach visitors to register for a "Treasure Quest” session.  That’s where visitors can use a Minelab metal detector in a sectioned off portion of the beach to locate seeded coins and other special tokens that can be redeemed for great prizes. The best part is that it’s all free of charge and everyone who participates walks away with at least a nice giveaway prize.

"Our Treasure Quest event is geared to share the fun and intriguing hobby of metal detecting,” explained Gary Schafer, general manager of the Minelab Americas. "Remember how you dreamed of finding buried treasure as a child? Now you get to do it for real, and bring along the entire family to enjoy the thrill of a hunt.”

Minelab has scheduled four hunts each day that consist of three separate heats. Those who find special tokens and keys throughout the day will be put into a daily drawing to win a metal detecting backpack filled with supplies, a beach kit or a new Minelab metal detector.

While the metal detecting hobby has been around for about a half century, outdoors-minded people rarely think about bringing a metal detector along with them when camping, hiking, fishing or hunting.  But a metal detector is one of the few recreational opportunities that can actually ‘pay you back’ by helping you locate coins, jewelry, gold nuggets, meteorites or historic artifacts like bullets and buttons from the Civil and Revolutionary War periods

Minelab will have expert detectorists available for consultation and instruction at Revere Beach during the NSSF.  At the end of each day, the Minelab experts will put on a demonstration in a seeded hunt contest to see who can find the most treasure.

Gourgue indicated that there will also be the traditional fireworks show on the Beach Saturday evening, July 20th, around 9 p.m.


 
 

Chelsea Senior Center contribute to Art Walk

6/14/2013

Prolific Quilters at Senior Center Help Garden During Art Walk

June 14, 2013
By
Chelsea Senior Center Quilters Mary Frangiamone, Helen Howard, Irene Malachowski, Eileen Gregory and Angela Panarese. Missing is founder Jean Perry. Panarese made the quilt shown here by hand and it will be available in the raffle for the Community Garden this weekend on the Chelsea Art Walk.

Chelsea Senior Center Quilters Mary Frangiamone, Helen
Howard, Irene Malachowski, Eileen Gregory and Angela
Panarese. Missing is founder Jean Perry. Panarese made
the quilt shown here by hand and it will be available in
the raffle for the Community Garden this weekend on the
Chelsea Art Walk.

The Chelsea Senior Center is a place where most of the City’s older crowd goes to relax.

That’s not the case, though, for several ladies who have created nothing short of a quilt factory on the second floor of the Center, overlooking City Hall Square.

Sitting at the sewing machine chugging along with nary a need for a break is Mary Frangiamone. Jean Perry – the founder of the group – uses the scissors like a surgeon and Eileen Gregory – another founder – puts them all together quickly. There is rarely a moment or a movement wasted.

Angela Panarese, on the other hand, provides the entertainment – or so she says.

"We all started doing this every Friday 10 years ago,” said affable Essex Street resident Panarese. "We buy our own materials and collect our own scraps to sew together. It’s about like a factory here. Eileen puts them together and Jean cuts them out. I do all the big talkin’ or I go get them coffee.”

Far from it, though.

While Panarese, who will soon be 90, is full of jokes, she is also full of the ability to quilt at a rapid pace – like the other ladies in the quilting circle.

For the third straight year, Panarese has made a quilt by hand for the Chelsea Community Garden – a piece that will be auctioned off to help the group buy a new shade shelter.

"We’re going to have Angela’s quilt in our raffle that will happen during the Art Walk this weekend,” said Community Gardener Margaret Carsley. "We’ve made about $1,000 over the two years, which is going t pay for our new shade shelter. Angela has a plot in the garden and told us she wanted to do whatever she could to help. The quilt will more than help, I’m guessing.”

Panarese said she has lived on the same street for more than 80 years – and has found a nice place to do her sewing overlooking the Creek and the Boston skyline.

"I found that I love quilting,” she said. "It’s like putting a jigsaw puzzle together. I don’t use a pattern. I collect little scraps of material and put them all together. What I really love to do is sit by my window and work. I’m right across from where the Coast Guard Station used to be. I just watch the boats go by and sew away. I love that.”

The group began in order to make quilts for homeless children and for babies with AIDS in the hospital at Boston Medical Center. Since then, they’ve also made quilts for the Women’s Club, Rosie’s Place Shelter, the Chelsea Firefighters, Beverly School for the Deaf, TheatreZone/Appolinaire and St. Rose Church.

Panarese said that putting the scraps together into quilts is a testament to her true Chelsea rags to riches story.

"I really do have a true rags to riches story in Chelsea because I started working in rag shops here – Beacon Supply, which was a rag shop,” she said with a laugh. "My cousin got us up out of bed one day and said they were hiring at the rag shop and we had better get down there. That was the worst job I ever had – sorting out rags with rubbish in it and everything. I couldn’t wait to get out of there.”

And when she was 18, Panarese said she got out of there and got hired at her father’s work, TRW/United Carr in Cambridge’s Kendall Square. She helped build the framework of airplanes during World War II.

"My father worked there and that’s the only reason I got out of the rag shop and in there,” she said. "My dad had to bribe the guy who did the hiring. It took four Enrico Caruso opera records to get me in the door.”

Panarese said she still loves Chelsea and often recalls the days when Chelsea High School was predominantly Jewish – and Italians like herself could look forward to being the few students at school during Jewish holidays.

"My childhood in Chelsea was very good,” she said. "It was a wonderful place to live, and I still love my street after all these years.”


 
 

City of Everett Gathers to Honor Firefighters

6/12/2013

City of Everett Gathers to Honor Firefighters

June 12, 2013
By
The Everett Firefighter Honor Guard march to the Firefighters Memorial Monument.

The Everett Firefighter Honor Guard march to the Firefighters Memorial Monument.

This past Sunday, June 9th, the City of Everett gathered at the Firefighters Memorial Monument on the corner of Elm and Ferry Streets in memorial of firefighters Richard Colarusso, Joseph O’Hearn, and Angelo Giangregorio.  Members of the community, Fire Department Personnel and the EFD Honor Guard paid tribute to both this year’s honorees, as well as all of those firefighters who are no longer with us.

Speakers at the service included Mayor Carlo DeMaria, Matt Laidlaw, Director of Communications for State Senator Sal DiDomenico, State Representative Wayne Matewsky, and Chaplin of the Everett Fire Department Reverend Tom Coots.

The speakers expressed their appreciation and gratitude to both the fallen heroes and those who currently serve and protect the residents of Everett.

"It is important to always remember and acknowledge the sacrifice and dedication firefighters display each and everyday,” states Mayor DeMaria, "I am extremely proud and grateful not only as Mayor, but as a resident of Everett of the men and women whose goal is to always protect our City


 
 

Everett High Graduates

6/12/2013

Congratulations, Graduates: The Everett High Class of 2013 Has Left Its Mark

June 12, 2013
By

A high school graduation is a bittersweet time both for the graduates and their family members. Although it is the most joyous and significant event thus far for the grads in their young lives, it also signifies the end of a period during which they have been dependent upon their parents, teachers, community, and friends for guidance and direction.

Graduation marks the official transition from childhood to adulthood. The grads no longer will be referred to as boys and girls, but as young men and women. They have the right to vote, the ability to enter into contracts, and only they, not their parents, will have access to their personal medical, academic, and financial information.

The graduates also can decide whether to join the military, which in these times can  mean putting their life on the line for their country.

But these new-found rights also carry with them the serious duties and responsibilities of adulthood and citizenship. Among the most important is that the grads no longer will be treated as juveniles by the criminal justice system, but will face all of the penalties and punishments attendant to criminal acts if they stray from the straight and narrow. Much has been given and much is expected from our grads, who have been like so many boats sheltered in a harbor, but who now are casting off into an ocean that promises to be both thrilling and challenging with seas that will be both calm and stormy.

For the parents, graduation brings mixed emotions. The pride they feel swelling up in them as they watch their son or daughter approach the podium to receive their diploma is tempered by the knowledge that their lives have changed forever. As they recall how they first brought their child to kindergarten 13 years ago, no doubt every parent will be reminded of the words from  the song from Fiddler on the Roof:

Where is the little girl I carried?

Where is the little boy at play?

I don’t remember getting older,

When did they?

A high school graduation is perhaps the one event in which the entire community celebrates and partakes, even if only from a distance. All of us remember our own high school graduation and the combination of exuberance and trepidation that it brought. Regardless of whether we have a direct link to a graduation ceremony, all of us take pride in the knowledge that another generation of our young people is moving onward and upward.

This is especially true for the Everett High Class of 2013, which fully has utilized the resources made available to them by the community and administrators and staff at Everett High to attain outstanding achievements. Many of our grads will be attending terrific colleges thanks to the education they have received in the Everett school system.

Indeed, we know we join with all of our readers in offering our congratulations to the graduates of the great Class of 2013  and wish them the best in the years ahead. We know they will continue to make their family, friends, and community proud as they attain even greater heights in whatever path of life they choose.


 
 

Winthrop Beach Receives High Marks

6/12/2013

Winthrop Beach Receives High Marks for Water Quality

June 6, 2013
By

Memorial Day marked the unofficial start of summer and soon Winthrop residents will flock to area beaches to soak up the sun and take a dip in the ocean.

In a new report by the leading Boston Harbor environmental advocacy group ranked Winthrop Beach in the Top 10 on its water quality report card.

Save the Harbor / Save the Bay released the report on the region’s public beaches from Nahant to Nantasket and Winthrop Beach scored 100% in 2012.

The score was the result of assessed water quality conditions at the beach and the group looked at the percentage of tests exceeding the state swimming standard of 104 cfu/100ml.

The score means Winthrop Beach is one of the cleanest and safest to swim at during the summer months.

"2012 was  a good year for most of the Boston Harbor region’s public  beaches, with more than half earning either an A or an A plus,”  said Director of Strategy, Communications and  Programs at Save the Harbor/Save the Bay Bruce Berman. "It was also a dry year, which explains most of the  changes we saw from 2011. Bacterial pollution is often caused by  storm water discharges that accompany summer showers, squalls  and storms, so less rain means cleaner water.”

The results of Winthrop Beach’s water quality were made public at the initial meeting of Save the Harbor’s Beaches Science Advisory Committee Sunday. The committee was convened to conduct a systematic review of water quality and beach flagging accuracy on the region’s public beaches from Nahant to Nantasket.

Flagging  accuracy improved somewhat in 2012, as a direct result of Department of Conservation and Recreation’s  continuing efforts to develop more accurate models for beach  management on a beach-by-beach basis.

"While  specificity (blue flag accuracy) is fairly high on many beaches,  sensitivity (red flag accuracy) continues to be problematic,  with less than 50% of the red flags posted correctly on some  beaches in 2012.,” said Berman. "This issue needs to be  addressed if we are to protect both the public’s  health and their right to enjoy the benefits of our region’s  pubic investment in clean water and better beaches.”

In 2013,  Save the Harbor will continue to work with the Metropolitan  Beaches Commission (MBC), the DCR, MWRA, EPA, DEP, the  Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) and the Beaches  Science Advisory Committee to develop more accurate models to  better predict when to post or flag a beach.

"At Save  the Harbor/Save the Bay our goal is clean water and not simply  better models or faster and more accurate test results,” said Berman. "We are  working towards the day when there is no need for flags at all.”

You can  download the report card, see the data and learn more about the methodology on which the report card is based at www.savetheharbor.org/beachesreportcard.


 
 

Everett approves Budget

6/12/2013

Aldermen Protest, then Approve $146 Million City Budget: $14.5 Million for Water/Sewer Funds Also Approved

June 12, 2013
By

The Board of Aldermen Monday night approved a $146 million city budget for fiscal year 2014, and another $14.5 million in expenditures for the water and sewer enterprise funds. However, the vote to approve the city budget was not without some drama, as the board ended up taking two votes before passing the budget.

On the first vote to approve the budget, only Aldermen Michael Mangan, Joseph McGonagle and Aldermanic President Sal Sachetta voted in favor of the $146, 305,994 city operating budget.

However, the winning side immediately asked for reconsideration, which allowed Aldermen Charles DiPerri and Michael Marchese to switch their votes, pushing the budget through.

Aldermen Robert Van Campen and Rosemary Cardillo voted against the spending package.

Alderman Van Campen, who opened the debate about the city budget, noted that the city had previously held two public hearings on the budget, but that he remains "very concerned about the inequities in the salary adjustments we see in this budget.”

Van Campen also said that some salaried positions in the city budget had received double-digits percentage increase over the previous year’s salary, while other union and contract positions had received 1.5 percent increases or none at all.

As an example of this inequity Van Campen, who has announced his intentions to run against Mayor Carlo DeMaria in the fall, pointed out that the salary line item in the Mayor’s office had seen a 70 percent increase from the previous year. However, that figure includes a new constituent services position for the administration as well.

"I know that the administration says that the budget as a whole is stable, and that the city has seen a six-percent reduction in numbers of positions since 2008. . .but since 2012 we’ve also started adding people back again,” said Van Campen.

The board approved the $14.5 million budget for water and sewer on a unanimous 7-0 vote, with no debate on the matter.


 
 

Winthrop High graduates June 7th

6/12/2013

WHS Graduation Set for Friday Night

June 6, 2013
By
Joe Gobiel Class President

Joe Gobiel
Class President

One-hundred-and-twenty-four graduates will receive their diplomas during the Winthrop High School Class of 2013 commencement ceremonies Friday at 6 p.m. at Miller Field. In case of inclement weather, the ceremony will be held indoors at the school gymnasium.

Principal Gail Conlon will welcome the gathering to the ceremonies and present her remarks. Conlon is retiring as principal this year.

"I will say a farewell in my own way,” said Conlon. "It’s been a great run.”

Conlon and Vice Principal Robin Kostegan, who is also retiring, will present the diplomas. There will also be a presentation of scholarships.

Superintendent of Schools John Macero will speak during the program. Speaker of the House Robert A. DeLeo and Town Council President Peter Gill will congratulate the graduates and join other dignitaries at the ceremonies.

Class Marshals John Dalton and Julia Wallace will lead the Pledge of Allegiance.

Michael Lessard, class valedictorian who will be attending Harvard, and Nicole O’Brien, class salutatorian who will be attending MIT, will deliver speeches.

Class president Joseph Gobiel will deliver his presidential address near the conclusion of the ceremony.


 
 

Markey visits East Boston Neighborhood Health Clinic

6/12/2013

U.S. Congressman Ed Markey Makes Campaign Stop at EBNHC

June 12, 2013
By
U.S. Congressman and Massachusetts Senatorial hopeful Ed Markey tours the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center with California Congressman Xavier Bacerra last Friday. Dr. Karin Leschly, medical director for family medicine at the Health Center provided the Congressmen with the tour.

U.S. Congressman and Massachusetts Senatorial hopeful Ed Markey tours the East Boston Neighborhood
Health Center with California Congressman Xavier Bacerra last Friday. Dr. Karin Leschly,
medical director for family medicine at the Health Center provided the Congressmen with the tour.

U.S. Congressman Ed Markey made a campaign stop in East Boston last Friday in his bid to win the Massachusetts Senate seat.

California Congressman Xavier Bacerra joined Markey for a tour of the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center facility in Maverick Square. The facility was built using federal stimulus money and Markey and Bacerra got a first hand look at how the federal dollars were well spent.

Markey, who helped announce the $12 million EBNHC got a few years back to build the Maverick Square facility said he wanted to show Bacerra how proud he and entire community is over the facility.

"For me it’s a great honor show Bacerra this incredible facility in East Boston and how proud I am of it and how proud the staff, physicians and entire community is of it,” said Markey. "Ralph Waldo Emerson said ‘health is the first wealth’ and what we have done here in East Boston and Massachusetts ensures every child has access to health care facilities and there is a pot (funds) to build facilities like this were health care is made available and people can receive quality health care in a dignified setting where the only thing that matters is the health and well being of families.”

Of the EBNHC facility, Markey said it doesn’t make any difference of someone’s income level or nationality the only thing that matters is health care of children and families.

"This has been out business plan because we believe the more educated and healthy our young people are the better future workforce we will have,” said Markey. "East Boston is a perfect example of what’s going on across the country now thanks to Affordable Care Act. You can see what happens when you invest in health care and you can see change that takes place in the relationship families have with health care.”

Markey pointed out that while Republicans voted against the Affordable Care Act he and Bacerra voted in favor because it makes facilities like EBNHC and the quality of health care inside possible.

"It’s an ongoing battle but it is the right thing to do,” said Markey. "You can see the impact a facility like this has on people and families and the community.”

EBNHC President Jack Cradock thanked Markey and said the facility is stimulus money alive and well.

"I tell the Congressman all the time that when someone criticize President Obama and what he did they should come to East Boston and look at out facility and out colleague health centers around the country,” said Cradock.

Latest polls have Markey up by 7 points over Republican challenger Gabriel Gomez.


 
 

East Boston' Neighborhood of Affordable housing has milestone anniversary

6/12/2013

NOAH Marks 25th Anniversary Milestone

June 12, 2013
By

East Boston’s Neighborhood of Affordable Housing (NOAH) began in the basement of Our Savior’s American Lutheran Church on Paris Street. It started in the basement of this church fighting slumlords in Eastie at a time when there was an influx of Vietnamese and Cambodian immigrants coming into the neighborhood.

At times these families wouldn’t have heat for two years. When buildings burnt down because the families were forced to use space heaters the landlords unfairly blamed the residents and began the rumors that these immigrants cooked on the floors of the apartments or in bathtubs.

"I remember NOAH’s first day. We got a call to assist a Vietnamese family which was being intimidated by an absentee owner over nasty conditions in an Eagle Hill apartment,” said NOAH’s Executive Director Phil Giffee. "The owner was also threatening them with eviction. East Boston has always been a welcoming community (and it should be proud of itself) but that event was a too-common experience in those days. If memory serves, we got the landlord to back off.”

With a goal to help these residents in Eastie because they had no one else to turn to NOAH was born.

"At the time the community needed two things,” explained Giffee. "East Boston needed an active enterprise that helped low income residents and a voice to resolve the housing crisis here.”

Giffee said there were to many absentee landlords taking advantage of the poor and having them live in substandard conditions. NOAH was there to take these immigrants complaints to the attorney general’s office and although it was hard at times it was these fights that helped NOAH emerged as a vital  neighborhood organization.

On June 20 NOAH will celebrate its 25th Anniversary with a summer bash at the Logan Hyatt Hotel. The event will honor Citizens Bank for the bank’s unique contributions and for its support to NOAH for over two decades. The event will be co-chaired by Robert Beal, President of The Beal Companies and Jerry Sargent, President of Citizens Bank and RBS Citizens.

John Jacobs, Chief Creative Optimist and co-founder of Life is Good, will be the evening’s keynote speaker.

While NOAH began as a way to improve housing conditions here it has blossomed into a respected organization that lends its name to community building, social and environmental justice and entrepreneurship for thousands of residents here.

In the early days NOAH ran on inspiration and spirit and today works on partnerships with local and area non-profits as well as community leaders and elected officials.

"And the many, many residents that do not have an official title with NOAH but were the backbone of the organization then and now,” said Giffee.

The misconception that NOAH somehow contributes to the demise of urban neighborhoods because it provides affordable housing has been disproved over the years as NOAH emerged as a stabilizing force in Eastie. Over the years NOAH has helped to drive out slumlords for the community, improved countless dilapidated buildings, improved Eastie’s housing stock and jumped on most environmental projects that added more green space to the neighborhood.

"I couldn’t be happier and I’m eternally grateful that I landed here landed here in East Boston 25 years ago,” said Giffee. "I met so many hardworking passionate dedicated people that have became close friends over the years.”

Giffee said from the beginning NOAH built on the human instinct to help other people move up in the world and year after year that original mission has been reaffirmed.

"Our role has always been to foster the human connection between people and help generations realize its not a South American and European divide in this neighborhood but that the people that come to East Boston now come here for the same reasons our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents did,” said Giffee.

So whether NOAH responds to seniors who need their homes repaired, a young family needing an affordable rental apartment, or yet another family facing a draining foreclosure - or to residents who need an advocate to help fix up a schoolyard, create open space or preserve our precious environment, Giffee said NOAH will continue to answer the call


 
 

East Boston to North End connection to be rehabbed

6/12/2013

Callahan Tunnel Rehab Project Scheduled

June 12, 2013
By

MassDOT has scheduled a meeting to discuss the proposed rehabilitation project to the Lieutenant William F. Callahan Tunnel that connects East Boston to the North End.

The meeting will be held on Wednesday, June 26 at 6:30 p.m. at the East Boston High School, 86 White St.

The project includes rehabilitation to the tunnel’s deck, curb line, gutters and replacement of the tunnel’s wall panels.

MassDOT project staff will present details including preliminary work schedule information and expected traffic impacts.

After removing 117 wall panels from the Callahan Tunnel in December 2013 and an additional two-dozen panels from the adjoining Sumner Tunnel last week, MassDOT decided to remove all 2,400 panels from the Callahan.

The removal of the panels came after a 100 lb. wall panel in the tunnel fell off the wall of the tunnel and landed in the road. The panels, which date back to the 1990s, are 9 ft. by 4 ft. and replaced older panels in order to give the tunnel a better look and reflect light for improved visibility in the tunnel for motorists.

After the panel fell, MassDOT was forced to shut down the Callahan so inspectors could perform a ‘pull test’ on the panels that line the tunnel.

After the inspections it was found that 117 panels did not pass the pull test and had to be removed. MassDOT officials said the framing holding the panels in place had corroded.

Inspectors took down every panel that showed some degree of looseness. The rest where firmly secured and MassDOT was confident they would not fall onto the road in the Callahan.

However, a week after performing the pull test in the Callahan, MassDOT inspectors moved over to the Sumner Tunnel where they performed the same testing.

They found that 26 panels needed to come down due to corrosion. MassDOT officials said any panel that moved even slightly was taken down in the Sumner.

Because the Callahan was up for an overhaul beginning this summer, MassDOT decided to take all panels down.

The overhaul of the tunnel will cost between $10 million and $12 million.

The Callahan Tunnel is one of three tunnels that connect East Boston to Boston via routes under the Boston Harbor, the others being the Sumner and Ted Williams Tunnels.  The tunnel was opened in 1961. It was named for the son of Turnpike chairman William F. Callahan, who was killed in Italy just days before the end of World War II.


 
 

Will the Casino Come to Revere or will it go to Everett

6/5/2013

The Waiting Game: Hurry Up Boston; Rizzo, Others Frustrated with Casino Delay

June 5, 2013
By

There’s a big donut hanging in the way of Boston and the completion of its long-awaited host community agreement, and despite that donut being across City Lines from Revere, it’s clogging a lot of arteries on both sides of the line.

Mayor Dan Rizzo has been very supportive of the efforts by Boston Mayor Tom Menino – and vice versa – for the duration of the host community negotiation process. In fact, the two mayors have worked so well together that they’ve forged a unique friendship. However, this week Rizzo said he is growing impatient with Boston – and he’s joining a long list of elected officials who have been grumbling privately for months.

"When I see how many people in Revere are in desperate need of a job, and as state aid continues to dry up – we have a net loss of close to $250,000 as compared to last year – it’s beginning to get frustrating to see this process drag on,” he said. "The Legislature had it right in keeping the tax rate at 25 percent because they recognize that businesses – regardless of whether they’re a manufacturer, a service organization, or a casino – still need to make a profit to be viable. It does no one any good to put them out of business before they open their doors by having unrealistic expectations or demands. This is about jobs, it’s about helping our local economy, and it’s about creating collateral investment opportunities. This will not happen if we can’t get to the point where an application can be submitted. If this were any other type of development, it would be hard for me to believe it would take this long to mitigate. Like I said, it’s extremely frustrating.”

And having that application submitted is becoming ever more critical every day that passes without a signed host community agreement.

Revere announced in late March that it had concluded negotiations with Suffolk Downs and was waiting to compare notes with Boston. Both, Rizzo said at the time, would sign their agreements at the same time after doing comparisons. At that time, it was believed Boston’s agreement would be hammered out quickly.

It wasn’t.

And a prepared City of Revere continues to wait.

Now, casino developer Steve Wynn’s proposal in Everett is putting major pressure on Suffolk Downs as the track’s proposal seems to be falling way behind in the backstretch – getting tangled up in Boston mayoral politics and stalemates over mitigation monies.

Everett signed its agreement with Wynn weeks ago and will have a community referendum vote on that package later this month. It is expected to pass overwhelmingly and has garnered support from all corners – including abutters to the project who live on the Rt. 99 corridor.

If host community agreements were completed this week, it would likely trigger a vote in early August. Anything later than the next few weeks would threaten to leak into September – dangerously close to a municipal election in Revere and a gigantic mayoral preliminary election in Boston. Likewise, it’s also dangerously close to the date that Phase II applications will begin to be accepted. Phase II applications will be accepted by the state Gaming Commission from October to January 2014. Most applicants are fighting to have those applications in at the earliest point possible.

One state official, speaking off the record, indicated that the hold up was how much money the track would have to pay Boston. It is said that Boston isn’t interested in compromising on that number and the track cannot reasonably afford what is being demanded.

On Monday, during a state Economic Development tour geared towards the press, Rizzo told State Secretary for Economic Development Greg Bialecki that he was frustrated with Boston and Mayor Menino on this issue.

"People come in to my office all the time asking me for a job at the new casino,” he said. "My pat answer is I tell them to fill out an application, but don’t give it to me, give it to Tom Menino because apparently he has plenty of jobs in Boston and can afford to wait on a casino


 
 

Revere Beach develpment for rental apartments

6/5/2013

Waterfront Square is Moving to the Development Fast Track

June 5, 2013
By

A major milestone in the Waterfront Square development on Revere Beach is about to unfold this week, and if developers have their way, the project will soon shift to warp speed.

Covington Realty Partners of St. Louis will appear before the Conservation Commission today, June 5th, to discuss plans for building two apartment buildings with 194 rental units on the North Lot at Wonderland.

It will be the first piece of the private development phase of the project. Up to now, only the public portion of the project has been under construction – including the new parking garage, pedestrian bridge and plaza deck.

Covington is one of the largest national multi-family apartment developers, having been in business since 1981 and having developed more than 16,000 units during their existence. They’re entrance into the East Coast follows a trend of western, Midwestern and southern development companies looking towards stronger rental markets in larger coastal cities like Boston and San Francisco.

Partner David Braswell told the Journal that Covington is preparing to buy the North Lot property development rights from EuroVest’s Joe DiGangi. Once that is done, it’s nothing but full speed ahead.

"By June 30th, we are predicting we’ll have everything we need from the City and I can start my construction documents,” said Braswell. "We would like to have a shovel in the ground by September and units available next April or May, 2014.

"It’s a great opportunity in Revere and Joe DiGangi has done a formidable job getting this done to this point,” he continued. "He’s spent seven years laying the groundwork. We’re acquiring the land from Joe and he has been a formidable asset to us because he knows this so well.”

According to documents filed with the Conservation Commission, Covington has proposed to build a seven-story apartment building and a five-story apartment building on the North Lot. Combined, those buildings will house 194 units of rental apartments. There will be two levels of parking under the seven-story building and one level of parking under the five-story building – amounting to 258 spaces for the buildings.

Most of the environmental and flood zone triggers in the development have been avoided, most likely, due to the fact that the buildings are being situated just outside of the boundaries, according to those same documents.

Braswell said they would commence the five-story building first – which will be located closest to Revere Street – and have it completed and ready for rental by April or May, 2014. They will continue on with building the seven-story building and have it finished by October.

He predicted they would be done with the entire project by December 2014.

DiGangi – who still holds the development rights to the rest of the project – said he is elated that a national company has come on board. He said having a company with the stature of Covington sends the rest of the development world a message about the stability of the market and the project.

"They’re a top rated company and they do about 2,500 or 3,000 units per year,” he said. "When you develop at that level, the entire United States is your territory. They’re a very reputable and old company.

"That I’m bringing in national development companies to develop the project with me is fabulous,” he continued. "Everyone should be applauding this. I’m delighted they’re coming in and it gives the project a national presence.”

Mayor Dan Rizzo said it’s a victory for Revere and the entire state.

"I am obviously excited to see the start and first phase of private investment,” he said. "Our entire Economic Development team has worked tirelessly showcasing all parcels that make up Waterfront Square. Now, it appears we’ll be reaping the fruits of their hard work and persistence. Obviously this is not only good news for the city, but also for Congressman Markey, Governor Patrick, Secretary Bialecki, and others who believe in Revere and provided close to $80 million to help create these development opportunities.”

Ward 5 Councillor John Powers said he does have concerns about the construction materials in the buildings, and hopes that they are of a high quality.

"I would hope whatever they put down there is made of a high quality material – concrete and steel,” he said. "I’d like to see high-end condos, some shops and quality restaurants. I’d like to see something to bring people in there – people who will support upscale restaurants and upscale shops.”

He did say he was a little put off by the fact that he had heard nothing of the project until this week.

"I feel like the City Council has not been privy to any of the negotiations on developments around here,” he said. "We seem to learn of everything by a late communication.”

Braswell said they learned of the Revere Beach project opportunity through Lou Minicucci Jr. of MINCO Corp. in North Andover. It just so happens that a partner at Covington is a friend of Minicucci’s, and they shared notes and came up on the Beach.

"We feel we are very fortunate to be a part of this project,” said Braswell. "We’re excited about the area and we hope to do more in the Massachusetts area.”

To date, most of the company’s projects have been in Texas, Missouri, Tennessee, Kansas and Oklahoma.

The Revere Beach project will be known as Vanguard at Waterfront Square.

Cutline –

There might be a carnival there now, but the North Lot could be home to new apartments by this time next year. A St. Louis developer is before the Conservation Commission this week and could kick off the Waterfront Square project by September.


 
 

Revere's Hill Park to be replaced

6/5/2013

Farewell to Hill Park

June 5, 2013
By

Hill Park on Park Avenue, named in memory of U.S. Sgt. James G. Hill, holds a special place in the hearts and minds of Revere residents.

For the Revere High School softball program, it has been the varsity’s home for decades. So many great friendships began on the softball diamond and continue today. There have been many memorable moments – from the phenomenal pitching performance of former RHS great Jen Wells, who helped the Lady Patriots upset a Bishop Fenwick team and program that would win the next seven Division 1 state championships – to last Thursday’s state tournament game when senior Aliza Anderson had a dramatic walk-off single in the bottom of the eighth to beat Lowell after freshman Ally Hinojosa had tripled to start the inning.

There have been men’s and women’s softball leagues at the park, basketball leagues on the adjacent courts, and tennis – and the park has served as the site of pre-game preparations for our Pop Warner teams before their games at Harry Della Russo Stadium next door. Revere Powder Puff teams have used the park for their practices as well.

But Hill Park is rounding third and heading for home – although there will be one final and fitting tribute called "The Last At Bat – A Farewell to Hill Park,” to be held June 22 at 10:30 a.m. Peter DiGiulio and Lenny Orlandello are running this wonderful event that is expected to attract many old-time and more recent softball players who enjoyed competition on the Hill Park diamond.

Hill Park will make way for a brand new Hill School that will replace the McKinley School. There will be no more softball games played at Hill Park, but the memories of this field and this focal point of Revere athletics and good times will live on for years to come.


 
 

Wall that heals comes to Revere on June 13-16th.

6/5/2013

Wall That Heals Comes to Revere on June 13-16

June 5, 2013
By

Revere will be transformed into a poignant Vietnam Memorial over the next week.

The ‘Wall That Heals’ – a travelling Vietnam Veterans Memorial and Museum – will be arriving in Revere to great fanfare on Tuesday, June 11th, and will be stationed for the public to view from June 13-16.

A welcoming processing has been planned on June 11th from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. The Wall will travel through Suffolk Downs and down Winthrop Avenue to Bennington Street.

The Revere Police Motorcycle Division, an Army truck and several other veterans will be the honorary accompaniment on the procession.

The Wall will be set up for the public to view in Frederick’s Park, just adjacent to the Beachmont VFW.

Opening ceremonies will take place at 5 p.m. on June 13th and the wall will be open 24 hours a day through Sunday, June 16th, at 5 p.m.

There will be ceremonies for Flag Day on June 14th, and Father’s Day, June 16th.

An entire committee made up of veterans and other community members has been led by Revere Veterans Agent Nick Bua for the last several months.

Bua indicated that they are excited to host the wall and he expects it to be a very powerful time for those who served in Vietnam, and even for those who did not.

As part of ‘The Wall That Heals’ program, the organization is putting out a call for photos. The organization believes that every name on the wall comes with a story, and they are trying to collect photos for the more than 58,000 names on the wall. Any photos collected will be put on display in the Museum and Education Center that accompanies the Wall across the United States. If anyone has a photo of a friend or loved one who is listed on the Wall, they can bring that photo to the event on any of the days it is in Revere for expert assistance.


 
 

Revere Beach amongst the cleanest beaches

6/5/2013

Good News for Local Beach Goers

May 29, 2013
By

The report card that came out Sunday by Save the Harbor/Save the Bay certainly comes as good news for local beach goers. Revere Beach was the cleanest beach in the metro Boston area. And for many residents, the only relief from the summer heat comes at cooling down at this beach.

A little more than two decades ago, relief from the heat at Revere Beach could not be counted on as red flags that prohibited swimming were posted on the shoreline.

Those days are a distant memory.

Due to a massive cleanup in the last 20 years, Boston Harbor went from the most polluted harbor to one of the cleanest in the nation. Of course, the cost of stopping the degradation of our water was billions of dollars and payment can still be seen every month in our water and sewer bills. However, even with all this money being spent, the reality remains of how fragile our environment is since a few of the area beaches like King’s Beach in the Lynn and Nahant area still have pollution issues that result in closing to bathers for days at a time.

Today, Revere Beach is being completely rehabbed.  From the sand replenishment to the new Markey pedestrian bridge, to activities like the Sandcastle competition, these improvements and events make this open space a true oasis for those seeking relief from the summer heat. On Thursday and possibly Friday, there will be record heat and humid temperatures.  We do not know what the water temperature will be, but some will venture a dip.  This report card on the quality at Revere Beach comes at the right time for residents.

Remember to watch out for those nesting areas of the piping plovers. And do not forget a slice at Bianchis or a visit to Kelly’s Roast Beef.


 
 

Revere High Soft Ball team wills dramatic game

5/31/2013
Dramatic Win in Last-ever Game at Hill Park; Will Play Lexington Away on Saturday
May 31, 2013
By
After hitting the game-winner, the girls softball team swarmed Aliza Anderson in celebration of their first-round tournament win.

After hitting the game-winner, the girls softball team swarmed Aliza Anderson in celebration of their first-round tournament win.

The Revere High School softball team made its final game at Hill Park a triumphant one, defeating Lowell, 3-2, in eight innings Thursday in a Division 1 North state tournament game.

Senior Aliza Anderson singled with two outs to bring home the winning run. Freshman Ally Hinojosa had a clutch triple to right centerfield and junior Stephanie Gregorio had an infield single down the third base line (Hinojosa wisely stayed at third on the play) to set the stage for Anderson’s winning hit.

Sophomore third baseman Kristina Stella was a defensive standout, turning in several outstanding plays while making strong, accurate throws across the diamond to Hinojosa at first base. Stella ended a Lowell threat by fielding the ball, stepping on third, and then firing a strike to complete an inning-ending double play.

After the game, the RHS Softball team paused for their last photo on the old field, which will be replaced by an elementary school.

After the game, the RHS Softball team paused for their last photo on the old field, which will be replaced by an elementary school.

Freshman Victoria Russo made a superb running catch in left field to deny Lowell an extra basehit. Junior shortstop Logan DiCarlo showed her excellent range by fielding a grounder heading to centerfield and turning it into an out on a fielder’s choice. Junior rightfielder Cassandra DiBella and junior second baseman Noel MacDonald also contributed to Revere’s outstanding overall defensive effort.

Senior Jacqui Noel drew a walk and used her fine speed to steal a base before freshman Juliana Cecere had an RBI single in the first inning. Stella (double) scored Revere’s second run on a passed ball in the third.

Sophomore pitcher Sabrina Palermo was very effective in a complete game performance.

Hill Park, the long-time home field of the Revere High softball program and local youth and adult softball leagues, will be the site of a new elementary school.

Revere will travel to Lexington Saturday for a 7 p.m. state tournament game.


 
 

Revere High Camera Club wins $1,000.00 award

5/29/2013

Lights, Camera Action at RHS

May 29, 2013
By

The halls of Revere High School (RHS) have become a movie set.

And more often than not, the culprits behind what has become a filming frenzy at the high school is the new Media Club – which just last week learned it won a statewide award for its submission highlighting the state’s school breakfast program.

Gathering in the Media Center of the new RHS Learning Commons (formerly known as the Library) last Friday, Club members and Sponsor Paul Amato accepted an award from Project Bread and the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE).

It wasn’t a Grammy, but rather a $1,000 check.

And the subject matter wasn’t a windswept drama, but rather a promotional video produced by the club about school lunch.

All the same, it was a feather in the cap for the club – a club that is only in its first year of existence.

Julie Wayman of Project Bread explained that 39 districts from all over the state had answered the call earlier this year to make a promotional video about the nutritional benefits of school breakfast. Instead of making their own stale production, the organization put it on the students of the state to come up with the most entertaining and creative video to highlight a sometimes dry subject matter – cafeteria food.

The RHS entry ended up taking first place statewide, being produced by Freshmen Lyba Khan, Denis Ortiz Martinez and Dennis Mejia.

"I came up with the idea and directed the film,” said Khan, who has flourished in the new club. "A lot of the students were excited to participate in our film. I thought they would be indifferent, but they wanted to do it and were very supportive.”

By no means, however, is this the first outstanding film effort conceived and produced at RHS. Even before the club came into existence, a movie-making culture had begun to develop with the ‘LipDub’ movie that was filmed two years ago using every member of the student body and faculty. Lip-synched to the song ‘Don’t Stop Believin’ by 1980s rockers Journey, the movie showcased the talents and school building for a visiting team of school district evaluators.

That gave way to a spoof of the 1980s classic ‘The Breakfast Club’ that was meant to highlight the new Freshman Academy for incoming eighth graders – and do so in a much more creative way than a simple "video tour.”

"We were charged with making a video about the new Freshman Academy and some of the students wanted to do something a little more creative than the standard informational video,” said Amato. "We thought about it, and the next thing you know, we were introducing the Academy on video through a very creative spoof of ‘The Breakfast Club.’ We called it ‘The Academy Club,’ and it went over really well.”

That was followed up by a similar video introducing the public and the students to the new Learning Commons. That video was a mock-up of the Mac vs. PC commercials that were popular a few years ago. The concept was the same, but the name was ‘Library vs. Learning Commons.’

"What’s very unique here is it’s not just a few students playing around with video, but they’re actually very good at this,” Amato said. "I’m shocked at some of the talent we have and the stuff that is produced here.”

Literature teacher Mary Ellen Dakin said new educational standards are pushing students and teachers to expand into things like movie making. She said reading and understanding literature, especially, requires a new step.

"Reading is not just reading images on a page,” she said. "I’ve used several movie posters in my classroom and had kids analyze the posters before reading a book or play like ‘Hamlet.’ I think it’s an amazing way back to the text. It’s not easy stuff, but always made the students better consumers of the books. Young people are going to be expected to merge film and writing and reading into one seamless presentation.”

Added Humanities Director Christina Porter, "I think the technology is such a focus in this district that it leads to things like this Club flourishing.”

The Media Club is already hot on another project, producing a promotional video for the school’s summer reading initiative. Next fall, they plan on making another lip-synch video.

And there may even be a few more surprises coming soon.

"We do have a full-length feature in the works for next year,” said Amato. "We’ll see where that goes, but there are some pretty good ideas already.”

The full promotional school breakfast video produced by the RHS Media Club can be seen at www.meals4kids.org.

MediaClub1 –

The Revere High School Media Club is only in its first year, but has a long history already of putting together creative films for the school. That history includes a video from last year promoting the Freshman Academy that operated on a spoof of the 1980s classic, ‘The Breakfast Club.’

MediaClub2 –

Accepting the $1,000 award check last Friday were Principal Lourenco Garcia, Freshman club members Lyba Khan, Denis Ortiz-Martinez, Dennis Mejia and Humanities Director Christina Porter.


 
 

Revere High Basekett ball coach replaced

5/29/2013
 
 
AD Hart Addresses Concerns over RHS Basketball Coach
May 29, 2013
By

It’s rare that a coaching change at Revere High School (RHS) spills its way into the local political scene, but recently when popular Mail Carrier Rick Hayes was replaced as the head coach of the boy’s basketball team after six years, the controversy moved beyond the walls of the high school.

So much so that it has even been mentioned in political campaigns for City Council and School Committee – despite neither of those offices having any control over the issue.

Recently, Hayes ran a ‘Thank You’ advertisement in the Journal concerning his view of how he was treated before being replaced.

"After two months of being in limbo, (Athletic Director Shaun) Hart informed me that Revere High basketball was going in a different direction and wouldn’t be needing my services as head coach,” read the letter. "When I asked what direction that was, I was not given a definitive answer. My only question is if the boy’s basketball job went out to the (statewide) MIAA, why doesn’t every other coaching position do the same?”

This week, Athletic Director Shaun Hart addressed the many concerns around the coaching change and highlighted the new path for the basketball program that he said was decided upon by more voices than just his own.

Coaching positions in Revere are mandated to be advertised every three years – something that has been in place for a long time. When the high school followed that rule this spring for Hayes’s job, Hart said they were surprised to get 25 applicants for the position, and some were very intriguing.

He said he put together a committee of six local people connected to the high school, and who possessed good basketball knowledge.

That committee is not public, and Hart was not inclined to name them, but he did say they interviewed nine candidates.

Hayes was one of those candidates, but so also was Freshman Coach Adam Rizzo and Middle School basketball coach Chris Miller. There were six candidates from out of the district.

In the end, Hart said the committee unanimously chose to hire Clarzell Pearl, who is currently an assistant boy’s basketball coach at Charlestown High School.

It was not a decision that Hart made alone, he said.

"Of all the people who came in, everyone did well,” said Hart. "Rick is a great guy and he interviewed well. There is no ill will or bad intentions. I just think basketball had run its course. Had the committee been deadlocked at 3-3 and I was the deciding vote, it would be different. However, it was unanimous and technically, I didn’t even need to vote on this. It was a decision made by the committee – made up of local people – that was best for the students and the business of RHS. Everyone out there, though, wants to make it something else.”

Hart went on to say that he won’t defend himself at the expense of Hayes, despite the public criticism going against him.

"I’m not going to put Rick down to bring myself up,” he said. "I don’t need to be the good guy. No matter what I do or say, there will just be people out there who think I did this and that I did it because Rick didn’t win or didn’t do something right. There will be people who think this happened because I’m not a hometown guy and wanted to bring in another guy who also wasn’t a hometown guy. There are people who want to make this a him vs. him thing and that just isn’t the case.”

Hart said he did feel it was unfair to compare the basketball position to other coaching positions, such as football.

"There is that misconception out there,” he said. "People are thinking also it’s one sport vs. another sport. They’re different animals. You can’t treat every sport the same.”

Hart said the committee was very excited to hire Freshman Basketball Coach Adam Rizzo as the new Junior Varsity coach – and Pearl’s greatest asset in getting acclimated to the city and the players.

"We’re super excited to have Adam there,” said Hart. "He had applied for the head coach job and was very excited about getting more experience first at the JV level. He realized the competition level and he knew jumping from the Freshman Team to the Varsity was a big jump. Adam knows every basketball kid in this community and we felt it rather important to bring him on to cement the program.”

Pearl, who is a middle school teacher in Brighton, stuck out to the committee due to his experience as a player and a coach, Hart said. Pearl went to Boston English High School, where he was a two-sport star in football and basketball. He eventually earned a scholarship for both sports at Boston College. However, during his collegiate career, he transferred to Northeastern University, where he was a two-year starter on the basketball team and the quarterback of the football team. He also had a stint in professional football and basketball leagues in Germany.

He coached girl’s basketball at Dorchester High School from 2003 to 2009, and has been the assistant boy’s coach at Charlestown until hired in Revere.

"Clarzell grew up the same way as our kids do,” he said. "He was adamant about getting our kids opportunities to be seen by people. He believes there are so many kids that are out of these small urban schools like Revere that never get an opportunity to be seen by a college coach. He hopes to change that here


 
 

Who will be Revere's Biggest Loser?

5/22/2013

Who Will Be Revere’s Biggest Loser?

May 22, 2013
By

R1Lines formed around the Planet Fitness with contestants in hopes that they would be picked for
this season’s Biggest Loser.


 
 

Revere city council considering Elderly Housing at Fenno's corner

5/22/2013

Councillors in Favor of Elderly Housing at Fenno’s Corner

May 22, 2013
By

A new project to demolish the old, historic Reardon’s Pub building on Fenno’s Corner and replace it with a five-story elderly housing building was greeted with enthusiasm and relief by city councillors and several area seniors.

"This is a long time coming,” said well-known senior advocate Rose Napolitano. "If you come up and down Broadway you’ll never see any developments for seniors. There are some senior complexes in the outlying areas of the city, but they are far from doctors, drug stores and coffee shops. This is an ideal location and a great spot for it and should have been done a long time ago.”

That being said, the current relief sought before the Council for the project is only a preliminary zoning change so that part of the property can move from a Residential B District to a General Business District. Monday’s discussion was only a public hearing on that matter, and so no vote was taken to change the zoning so as to allow the project to move forward to the permitting stage.

Nevertheless, that didn’t stop everyone from talking about what is to come.

The project is being proposed by The Neighborhood Developers (TND), a non-profit out of Chelsea that has been doing a lot of work in the Shirley Avenue area. TND Attorney Gerry D’Ambrosio said that the project would entail demolishing the historic (but vacant) pub and building a five-story building with 48 residential apartments deeded strictly for senior housing (55 years and older). Of those 48 units, some 70 percent would be give preference to Revere senior citizens.

Responding to rumors that the complex might eventually turn out to be subsidized family housing, D’Ambrosio refuted any such claims.

"This is not 250 Broadway,” he said, referring to the subsidized housing complex just a stone’s throw from Fenno’s Corner. "I’ve heard that from a number of people. It’s nothing like it. Not the same development or project…This is elderly housing with a preference for Revere elders. That’s the project and we’ll stand on that.”

He said that the financing has been gained from state grants in part that are specifically designated for senior housing, and that goal cannot be amended.

There is also slated to be three commercial business units on the ground floor.

Ward 1 Councillor Richard Penta said it was a no-brainer and a win all around for a corner that has been blighted and vacant for several years now.

Councillor Stephen Reardon – a former owner of Reardon’s – said it was with mixed emotions that he viewed the project, but he was glad it was finally being developed.

"It is bittersweet for me,” he said. "As a former minority owner of the property and one who worked in there for years, my family’s business, it is sad to see it go. I am glad to see it will be used for the elderly and I want to make sure it stays elderly housing.”

Mayor Dan Rizzo said he supports the plan.

"It’s hard to be against additional senior housing and if you’re familiar with TND and the work they’ve done in Chelsea at the Box District and the Walden House on Shirley Avenue and now here on Broadway – it’s high-quality work,” he said. "It really should not be a hard vote for the Council to make. We’re taking a building that for years has served its purpose, but has been vacant now for the last few years.”


 
 

Revere High Girls softball team wins to reach State tourney

5/22/2013

Softball Team Wins Three Games to Reach State Tourney

May 22, 2013
By

The Revere High softball team enjoyed a highly-successful week, winning three of its four contests to qualify for the post- season state tournament for the second year in a row.

"The girls are playing very well in all aspects of the game,” said RHS head coach Joe Ciccarello of his squad, which now stands at 10-7 on the season. "Our goals this season were to make the tourney and to improve on our 10-10 record of last year. We’ve accomplished the first one and now have three games left to achieve the second.’

Sabrina Palermo continued to do an outstanding job for the Lady Patriots in the pitching department. In a 5-1 win over Lynn English last Monday, Sabrina fanned 12 enemy batters. She also picked up a pair of "Ws” in triumphs over Beverly of 15-3 last Wednesday and 5-3 on Sunday in a make-up game.

Hitting stars for Revere in the victories were Julianna Cecere and Christina Stella in the English contest; Stephanie Gregorio in the first Beverly game with two hits and three RBI to earn the game ball; and Stella (3-for-4 with two ribbies) and Jacqui Noel (three hits) in the second Beverly tilt.

The lone setback for the Revere girls was a 6-5 defeat to Waltham on Senior Night in a contest that took a very bizarre twist. After spotting Waltham early leads of 3-0 and 6-2, the Lady Patriots battled back to get within 6-5 in the sixth frame. Revere had runners on base and the heart of their order (3-4-5 hitters) coming up,

However, the umpire then abruptly decided that the game could not go on because of the lack of lights in right field, which had not come on all night because of a malfunction.

"We came out flat to start the game,” said Ciccarello, noting that it was Revere’s second straight game and third in four days. "But we finally got our bats on the ball and had the momentum on our side when the ump decided to end it.”

Cecere and Stella produced the RBIs for the Lady Patriots.

Ciccarello and his crew were set to conclude their regular season this week, starting Monday night at Salem. They play tomorrow (Thursday) at Peabody and host Medford Saturday morning at 10:00.

They then will await word of their seeding and first round opponent in the Division 1 North Sectional of the MIAA tournament which is expected to be announced in the middle of next week.


 
 

Proposed Pay Raises Causes Concerns for City Council

5/15/2013

Proposed Pay Raises Causes Concerns

May 15, 2013
By

"Blindsided” was the word most commonly used by City Councillors Monday evening when describing a last-minute communication from Mayor Dan Rizzo that sought to change the City’s salary ordinance so four non-union department heads could gain significant salary increases.

In fact, when the matter was brought up at the end of the meeting, councillors were nearly speechless and weren’t sure how to even handle the request.

Many reported they had only seen the communication five minutes prior to it being brought up.

"I was surprised,” said Council President Ira Novoselsky. "I couldn’t even immediately remember our procedures I was so shocked, and I put it in committee instead of calling for a public hearing. They [the employees] were all sitting there and I’m not sure if they expected us to pass it right there. We ended up having to just go to a public hearing. A lot of the councillors were surprised.”

The ordinance change calls for four non-union department heads to get salary increases by ordinance – effectively changing the City’s salary ordinance for the Superintendent of Public Works, the City Director of Finance, the City Clerk and the City Solicitor. The ordinance was prompted by a union contract negotiation with City Hall employees. The four department heads listed above, though, are statutorily barred from belonging to a municipal union.

While the ordinance calls for an expansion of the duties of the Director of Finance – making that position in charge of things such as Worker’s Compensation and performance-based budgeting – most every other job gets the salary increase without an increase in duties.

The salary increases are as follows:

•City Clerk Ashley Melnik, $98,427 (made $85,508 in 2012)

•DPW Superintendent Don Goodwin, $99,990 (2012 = $95,466)

•Director of Finance George Anzuoni, $150,000 (2012 = $130,410)

•City Solicitor Paul Capizzi, $82,468 (2012 = $80,021)

If the measure were approved, the pay raises would be retroactive to July 1, 2012, and the employees would get the same contractual pay increases going forward that were negotiated by the City Hall bargaining units. Those increases were 2 percent each year through 2014.

Mayor Rizzo said the request came due to a salary study done for those four non-union employees while in the course of negotiating with the City Hall unions.

He said all four appeared to be below that of their peers in surrounding cities. However, he did not immediately produce that study for councillors or the public.

"We conducted our own salary study for people not part of collective bargaining,” said the mayor. "There were some people not completely in line with surrounding cities and towns, particularly with our workload…I’ve been here 18 months and I’ve seen the workload the four people in question have had to handle in very, very difficult circumstances. I’m only asking the City Council to bring them up to parity with our sister cities of similar size.”

Councillors, however, were not immediately interested in such justice.

Councillor John Correggio said he couldn’t support the matter, as he had some concerns about giving out such an increase to at least one of the employees.

Councillor John Powers said it was an awkward time to ask for an ordinance change to increase salaries.

Councillor Bob Haas was beside himself, saying it was unprecedented to lay such a request at the last minute on the laps of city councillors.

Novoselsky said the matter will be brought to a public hearing rather quickly due to scheduling conflicts – with that hearing taking place next Monday on May 20th.

The matter will be discussed in the Council Ways and Means Committee on June 6th, and will likely come up for a vote on June 10th.

"There are some who have said that maybe we can phase it in over time,” said Novoselsky. "We just saw it five minutes before. This is an ordinance that will also set precedence for people coming in after the current employees.”

Ways and Means Chair Brian Arrigo said he was surprised by the move, and he hopes the salary study will back up the request.

"It was a little surprising, but it was good to hear from the mayor that they had something to back up why they were making the request,” he said. "I look forward to talking about that. It was a little surprising they didn’t do it in the budget. It will be interesting to see where the money is coming from to pay for this and what the comparisons are that they used.”

Arrigo said he might like to explore an amendment to the measure, perhaps tying the salary increases to the cost of living index.

"Rather than come back every 10 years to amend the salary amounts with a large pay raise, it might be better to tie it to the Consumer Price Index so there is a smaller increase every few years rather than a big jump every 10 years,” he said


 
 

Revere Candidates pullnomination papers

5/15/2013

Candidates Pull Nomination Papers

May 15, 2013
By

As people began to pull papers this week for the City Election season, two seasoned challengers have emerged in the Councillor-at-large race, and a Ward 5 primary election looks to be all but certain.

Nomination papers became available at City Hall last Wednesday, May 8th, for the offices of Ward Councillor (six seats), Councillor-at-large (five seats) and School Committee (five seats), and already some interesting races are emerging. Nomination papers are due in July, and candidates will only appear on the ballot if they return those papers to the Election Department with the proper amount of qualifying signatures.

For councillor-at-large, challengers George Rotondo and Steven Morabito appear to have jumped into a race full of political veterans, and so far, and devoid of any new faces on the scene.

Rotondo is a former councillor-at-large who ran for mayor two years ago and was defeated. Prior to being an at-large councillor, he held the Ward 4 seat for several years.

He is now a resident of Hawes Street.

Also in the race is Morabito, who was actually elected two years ago, but had his seat stripped away after a recount.

Naturally, all incumbents in the at-large race are expected to take out papers. Already, Councillors John Correggio, Jessica Giannino, Bob Haas, and Tony Zambuto have taken out their papers.

Correggio has already turned in his papers in proper order and is certified for the ballot.

At-large Councillor Brian Arrigo is expected to take out papers very soon.

Meanwhile, in that same race, one development that is noteworthy among the know-it-alls was the observation that Ward 4 Councillor Stephen Reardon did not take out papers for at-large, but stayed at home in Ward 4.

With two successful terms under his belt, and an important chairmanship of the Zoning Committee, many expected Reardon might try to step up – as he has been talked about as a potential candidate for mayor against Mayor Dan Rizzo in 2015.

The other development is that three candidates have taken out papers in Ward 5, which means that if all turn in their papers and make the ballot, there will be a primary in the ward for the first time in more than a decade.

Taking out papers this week were incumbent John Powers and challengers Al Terminiello Jr. and Billy Bell.

In the School Committee race, there looks to be several new faces challenging for a seat.

All incumbents are expected to seek re-election, but so far only Donna Wood Pruitt has pulled papers.

Newcomers Susan Gravellese and Juan Jaramillo have also pulled papers.

Kilburn Street resident Patrick Keefe, also a newcomer to the scene, is expected to take out papers shortly.

It will leave a crowded field of good candidates for the five seats, and there is also an expectation that there could be a surprise candidate coming along later.

In Ward 1, Councillor Richard Penta has taken out papers, and challenger Gregg LaCedra – who is active in the City’s Republican Committee – will challenge Penta once more.

In Ward 2, Council President Ira Novoselsky took out papers. In Ward 3 Councillor Arthur Guinasso took out papers and Ward 6 Councillor Charlie Patch is expected to pull papers very soon.


 
 

Maureen Celata from Celata Real Estate Quoted Boston Globe Magazine

5/15/2013
Maureen Celata from M.Celata Real Estate has been quoted in the Boston Globe Sunday Magazine section about the increase in sales in Revere. Time to make a decision to get off the fence about buying or not was also a topic because the interest rates are at an all time low. 
 
The inventories are low too and if you can find a home without getting into a bidding war, you will be fortunate and should jump at the chance.
 
 
 

 
 

Revere Housing Marking Heating up Again

5/9/2013

Revere Market Heating Up Again

May 9, 2013
By

The perception of Revere being a city on the move has provided a great new branding for the City, but now some believe that the local real estate market is providing some positive new numbers to back up that new brand.

Real Estate professionals in the City are reporting that the market is very different and difficult to predict, but really on the upswing for those who are selling their homes. That comes after years of double-digit declines in housing prices and a market that had a glut of bank-owned and foreclosed properties that only moved through short sales. At one time, Revere had become the poster child for everything that was wrong with the once-booming Greater Boston housing market.

Now, though, there are nearly no rental units on the market, and any that are on the market are very high priced.

Agents are seeing people from other areas of the state making buy offers on Beach properties and properties in the neighborhoods.

Short sales are on the decline, and the small inventory of properties for sale is moving quickly and at good prices.

Even the Boston Globe – which has historically loved to pound Revere’s image – recently named the City as one of 13 hot and up-and-coming communities in the state.

"Right now we have no inventories on the rental side and very small inventories on the for sale side,” said Realtor Maureen Celata of M. Celata Real Estate. "It’s really a nutty market…We definitely aren’t doing as many short sales, which is positive. In 2007 and 2008 probably 80 percent of our business was short sales because a lot of people just couldn’t break out even. To get out from under homes that were worth less than what was owed, they had to do short sales. Now, we’re only doing about 15 percent of our business on short sales. That’s a marked improvement…I see that there are a lot of ethnic groups moving in. The face of Revere – like all other cities and towns – is changing. There are just a lot more people out there who are buying.”

Laura D’Amico of Century 21 D’Amico on Pleasant Street said it was about time that Revere got its due.

"Our housing market is really very, very attractive right now,” she said. "We’re seeing multiple offers on all properties – both single-families and multi-families. I just had an open house for a property on Winthrop Parkway last weekend and got an offer before the open house. We’re looking at that potentially being sold in one day and for a price in the high $500,000s. We’re really seeing a lot of fabulous activity and I’m extremely excited.”

She said that Revere’s market has become popular to all types of people in all stages of life – whether immigrants with young families or empty nesters who grew up in Revere and moved away.

"I think people are finally realizing Revere is a very, very wonderful place to live in,” she said. "With the high test scores in the schools, the beauty of the Beach and the new economic development coming along, there is a desire to come here. There are young families, older people who are moving back to the community after moving away to raise children in the suburbs – they all want to locate in Revere. I’ve even got people relocating here from western Massachusetts.”

One of the big reasons that the City is on the rebound is the positive message that has been trumpeted to those outside the city by the new administration. Specifically, events such as last year’s Economic Development Summit have drawn bigger developers to the area, which in turn drives individual interest in local real estate as the perception of Revere as a "diamond in the rough” gains momentum.

Such perceptions were validated by the recent Globe article, which reported that the median price of a single-family home in Revere has increased by 9.6 percent since 2011. Even better than that was the fact that condos in Revere have increase by 19 percent since 2011.

"The positive story in the Boston Globe validates my belief that Revere truly is a city on the rise and will soon become one of the North Shore’s most desirable places to live and work in,” said Mayor Dan Rizzo. "With all we have to offer, proximity to downtown Boston and Logan Airport, our 2 1/2 miles crescent shaped beach, and aggressive reinvestment into our aging infrastructure, Revere is and continues to be a city on the move.”

Revere Economic Development Director Joe Festa said the City’s efforts to invest on Broadway and to spread the message to out-of-town developers about specific properties "ripe for development” has generated a lot of talk about Revere. That has created the idea that Revere will be the next sleeping giant to awaken in the Greater Boston real estate market.

"I think it’s a combination of things happening,” said Festa. "We’re prepared to spend $2 million to revitalize the infrastructure on Broadway and there are a lot of developers who are looking to change Revere Beach…Between Broadway, the gaming facility that might be coming, the Revere Beach development and now a positive real estate market, I really believe Revere is on the radar screen for development. We’re very clear with developers when the come in and we make sure they have a good experience. In the next 10 years, Revere is going to change in such a positive way that there will be a major transition.”

So far, the City’s investment and positive image campaign has resulted in some modest gains in the local housing market – so that what was a dismal investors-only market has turned into a true sellers market.

"I just don’t want to see things get over inflated like years ago,” said Celata. "My only message right now is for people sitting on the fence about selling their home. Now is a good time to sell because interest rates for mortgages are way down and we don’t know how long that’s going to last. If someone is sitting on the fence, now’s the time to jump off.”


 
 

Revere Market heating up again.

5/8/2013

Revere Market Heating Up Again

May 9, 2013
By

The perception of Revere being a city on the move has provided a great new branding for the City, but now some believe that the local real estate market is providing some positive new numbers to back up that new brand.

Real Estate professionals in the City are reporting that the market is very different and difficult to predict, but really on the upswing for those who are selling their homes. That comes after years of double-digit declines in housing prices and a market that had a glut of bank-owned and foreclosed properties that only moved through short sales. At one time, Revere had become the poster child for everything that was wrong with the once-booming Greater Boston housing market.

Now, though, there are nearly no rental units on the market, and any that are on the market are very high priced.

Agents are seeing people from other areas of the state making buy offers on Beach properties and properties in the neighborhoods.

Short sales are on the decline, and the small inventory of properties for sale is moving quickly and at good prices.

Even the Boston Globe – which has historically loved to pound Revere’s image – recently named the City as one of 13 hot and up-and-coming communities in the state.

"Right now we have no inventories on the rental side and very small inventories on the for sale side,” said Realtor Maureen Celata of M. Celata Real Estate. "It’s really a nutty market…We definitely aren’t doing as many short sales, which is positive. In 2007 and 2008 probably 80 percent of our business was short sales because a lot of people just couldn’t break out even. To get out from under homes that were worth less than what was owed, they had to do short sales. Now, we’re only doing about 15 percent of our business on short sales. That’s a marked improvement…I see that there are a lot of ethnic groups moving in. The face of Revere – like all other cities and towns – is changing. There are just a lot more people out there who are buying.”

Laura D’Amico of Century 21 D’Amico on Pleasant Street said it was about time that Revere got its due.

"Our housing market is really very, very attractive right now,” she said. "We’re seeing multiple offers on all properties – both single-families and multi-families. I just had an open house for a property on Winthrop Parkway last weekend and got an offer before the open house. We’re looking at that potentially being sold in one day and for a price in the high $500,000s. We’re really seeing a lot of fabulous activity and I’m extremely excited.”

She said that Revere’s market has become popular to all types of people in all stages of life – whether immigrants with young families or empty nesters who grew up in Revere and moved away.

"I think people are finally realizing Revere is a very, very wonderful place to live in,” she said. "With the high test scores in the schools, the beauty of the Beach and the new economic development coming along, there is a desire to come here. There are young families, older people who are moving back to the community after moving away to raise children in the suburbs – they all want to locate in Revere. I’ve even got people relocating here from western Massachusetts.”

One of the big reasons that the City is on the rebound is the positive message that has been trumpeted to those outside the city by the new administration. Specifically, events such as last year’s Economic Development Summit have drawn bigger developers to the area, which in turn drives individual interest in local real estate as the perception of Revere as a "diamond in the rough” gains momentum.

Such perceptions were validated by the recent Globe article, which reported that the median price of a single-family home in Revere has increased by 9.6 percent since 2011. Even better than that was the fact that condos in Revere have increase by 19 percent since 2011.

"The positive story in the Boston Globe validates my belief that Revere truly is a city on the rise and will soon become one of the North Shore’s most desirable places to live and work in,” said Mayor Dan Rizzo. "With all we have to offer, proximity to downtown Boston and Logan Airport, our 2 1/2 miles crescent shaped beach, and aggressive reinvestment into our aging infrastructure, Revere is and continues to be a city on the move.”

Revere Economic Development Director Joe Festa said the City’s efforts to invest on Broadway and to spread the message to out-of-town developers about specific properties "ripe for development” has generated a lot of talk about Revere. That has created the idea that Revere will be the next sleeping giant to awaken in the Greater Boston real estate market.

"I think it’s a combination of things happening,” said Festa. "We’re prepared to spend $2 million to revitalize the infrastructure on Broadway and there are a lot of developers who are looking to change Revere Beach…Between Broadway, the gaming facility that might be coming, the Revere Beach development and now a positive real estate market, I really believe Revere is on the radar screen for development. We’re very clear with developers when the come in and we make sure they have a good experience. In the next 10 years, Revere is going to change in such a positive way that there will be a major transition.”

So far, the City’s investment and positive image campaign has resulted in some modest gains in the local housing market – so that what was a dismal investors-only market has turned into a true sellers market.

"I just don’t want to see things get over inflated like years ago,” said Celata. "My only message right now is for people sitting on the fence about selling their home. Now is a good time to sell because interest rates for mortgages are way down and we don’t know how long that’s going to last. If someone is sitting on the fence, now’s the time to jump off.”


 
 

Rever Shines

5/1/2013

Revere Shines

May 1, 2013
By

We would like to thank the hundreds of volunteers who took time on Saturday to participate in the third annual " Revere Shines” neighborhood cleanup.

The weather was perfect, which led to more people helping out this year.

Coming from every ward in the City, volunteer residents spent most of the morning cleaning parks, public facilities, and the other areas around the neighborhoods that needed a little spring-cleaning.

This year’s event was made possible with the help of Revere’s community groups and organizations spearheaded by our city leaders who led by example with their sleeves rolled up.

Mayor Dan Rizzo invited all volunteers to enjoy a fantastic post clean-up barbecue at the American Legion front lawn where a great time was had by all

It was a superb job.


 
 

Revere: New hotel planned at Wonderland

4/25/2013

New Hotel Planned at Wonderland

April 25, 2013
By

A development team has proposed putting a 12-story, 200-room hotel – dubbed preliminarily as the Ballroom Hotel – on the current site of the Wonderland Ballroom.

Attorney Gerry D’Ambrosio said the proposal is in the very early stages, and the development team is still not being identified publicly.

Other sources indicated that the team was based out of Newton.

"It’s in the early stages right now, but they’re making a lot of progress,” said D’Ambrosio. "The potential is for a 12-story structure just a little under 200 rooms with an attached garage. The attached garage is about seven floors. It’s definitely early on and the renditions speak to the potential of the site…They’re putting their money where their mouth is. They’re spending a lot of money to do the plans and to bring this all to fruition. If a casino comes in, that makes it all the better.

"It really is the perfect location,” he continued. "It’s on the ocean. It’s right on a highway. There’s a T stop. Hopefully it will also service a local casino. There’s a lot of promise here.”

The current ballroom, in the plan, would be demolished.

D’Ambrosio said the City has been excellent to work with so far – especially given that the site falls within the Wonderland Transit Oriented Development zone, qualifying it for expedited zoning and permitting.

"It’s been great working with the Mayor’s Office,” he said. "Developers really love to hear that the community and the Mayor’s Office is willing to work with them. It’s always good when the community realizes where development potential is and is willing to accommodate it.”

Ward 5 Councillor John Powers said he had been apprised of the proposal and supports it 100 percent.

"I’ve always been supportive of hotels,” he said. "The traffic is intermittent. We don’t pick up their trash. They don’t have kids that will go to the schools. They provide construction jobs and, after construction, permanent jobs for local residents. Hotels are a win-win for the City. I’m 100 percent for it.”

Right now, D’Ambrosio said they are working with the MBTA to secure easements, as access to the hotel would require travelling over T property.

"The Wonderland Ballroom goes from lot line to lot line and some egresses involve going over T property,” he said. " We’re in discussion on that now.”

He said they are now working on the architecture, engineering, traffic studies and parking requirements.

As for a new ballroom, he said it’s still too early to tell.

"I guess that’s still up in the air,” he said. "It really comes down to the final determinations and we’re not there yet.”


 
 

New Hotel planned for Wonderland

4/25/2013
New Hotel Planned at Wonderland
April 25, 2013
By

A development team has proposed putting a 12-story, 200-room hotel – dubbed preliminarily as the Ballroom Hotel – on the current site of the Wonderland Ballroom.

Attorney Gerry D’Ambrosio said the proposal is in the very early stages, and the development team is still not being identified publicly.

Other sources indicated that the team was based out of Newton.

"It’s in the early stages right now, but they’re making a lot of progress,” said D’Ambrosio. "The potential is for a 12-story structure just a little under 200 rooms with an attached garage. The attached garage is about seven floors. It’s definitely early on and the renditions speak to the potential of the site…They’re putting their money where their mouth is. They’re spending a lot of money to do the plans and to bring this all to fruition. If a casino comes in, that makes it all the better.

"It really is the perfect location,” he continued. "It’s on the ocean. It’s right on a highway. There’s a T stop. Hopefully it will also service a local casino. There’s a lot of promise here.”

The current ballroom, in the plan, would be demolished.

D’Ambrosio said the City has been excellent to work with so far – especially given that the site falls within the Wonderland Transit Oriented Development zone, qualifying it for expedited zoning and permitting.

"It’s been great working with the Mayor’s Office,” he said. "Developers really love to hear that the community and the Mayor’s Office is willing to work with them. It’s always good when the community realizes where development potential is and is willing to accommodate it.”

Ward 5 Councillor John Powers said he had been apprised of the proposal and supports it 100 percent.

"I’ve always been supportive of hotels,” he said. "The traffic is intermittent. We don’t pick up their trash. They don’t have kids that will go to the schools. They provide construction jobs and, after construction, permanent jobs for local residents. Hotels are a win-win for the City. I’m 100 percent for it.”

Right now, D’Ambrosio said they are working with the MBTA to secure easements, as access to the hotel would require travelling over T property.

"The Wonderland Ballroom goes from lot line to lot line and some egresses involve going over T property,” he said. " We’re in discussion on that now.”

He said they are now working on the architecture, engineering, traffic studies and parking requirements.

As for a new ballroom, he said it’s still too early to tell.

"I guess that’s still up in the air,” he said. "It really comes down to the final determinations and we’re not there yet.”


 
 

Revere High School Sophomore Erroneously fingeres as Marathon Bomber!

4/17/2013

RHS Sophomore Erroneously Fingered as Marathon Bomber by National Media

April 19, 2013
By

Locally, the news media has been pretty friendly to Beachmont’s Salaheddin Barhoum.
His track and field results are dutifully reported just about every week in this paper, as he seems to do better in the two-mile run every week that goes by.
However, when it comes to the national and international media, they haven’t done so good by the 17-year-old Moroccan immigrant.
Very early Thursday morning, Barhoum and his family were shocked to see the front page of the New York Post, which showed Barhoum and a friend in the crowd at Monday’s tragic running of the Boston Marathon. The problem was that the front-page headline blared ‘Bag Men: Feds Seek These Two Pictured at Boston Marathon.’
Talk about having a target on your back.
Clear as day, Barhoum was pictured standing and watching the Marathon with a headline fingering him as the Marathon Bomber – all this in an international publication from New York City.
The front-page newspaper faux pas followed a report on CNN the night before that basically outed Barhoum as the bomber – with a reporter describing him from the same picture, a picture that had already been circulating on the Internet for two days.
Before he knew it, Internet sleuths had searched the young Revere man out and he had hundreds of threats and violent rants on his Facebook page.
He was scared.
He was confused.
He was angry.
"This is real. I did not do this. I am going straight to the courts now to tell them I didn’t have anything to do with this,” he wrote on his Facebook page Thursday before shutting it down.
Revere Police and the Revere Public Schools got involved immediately after Barhoum reached out to them via his track coach.
Superintendent Paul Dakin said it was hard to figure out what to do in such a situation.
The young man’s life was in danger, as angry onlookers and members of the media began showing up at the family’s Beachmont home, and officials had no idea if someone might try to enact vigilante justice upon the innocent RHS student.
"He was scared and his family was scared,” said Dakin. "They reached out to us for advice, but it was hard to know exactly what to do in that kind of situation. We thought about putting some police cars near the home to protect him, but we also thought that bringing in police cars to the scene might make people think he was actually guilty. It’s hard to know exactly what the right response would be.”
Around Revere, Barhoum’s friends from around the City and his teachers were floored to see him at the forefront of national media reports. Virtually no one believed it to be true.
By the end of the day, most media reports began to trickle out indicating that Barhoum and his friend had been wrongly identified by the Post and CNN.
Barhoum reached out to several media outlets, both local and national, to try and figure out how to clear his name.
Eventually, he spoke to ABC News to tell the story of how he was just a simple Revere High School student who works at Subway and runs the two-mile race and had an interest in watching the Marathon.
"This is terrible what they did to him,” said one teacher who chose to remain anonymous. "This could have had some really bad repercussions. We have to remember he is just a kid, a sophomore in high school, and he had the weight of the world bearing down on him for most of the day. It’s despicable.”
By 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, once FBI investigators released official photos and videos of the newest ‘persons of interest,’ Barhoum and his friend and their terrible Thursday had been all but forgotten.
The Post has since backtracked on its story.


 
 

Search at local Revere apartment complex for Bomber

4/17/2013
Could End Up Being Nothing
April 17, 2013
By
The apartment building at 364 Ocean Ave. was rather quiet on Monday morning aside from a Revere Police cruiser stationed along the street. However, Monday night the building was at the center of a major raid by all levels of law enforcement.

The apartment building at 364 Ocean Ave. was rather quiet on Monday morning aside from a Revere Police cruiser stationed along the street. However, Monday night the building was at the center of a major raid by all levels of law enforcement.

The feelings of what had happened at the Boston Marathon on Monday had not yet begun to sink in before the full force of the investigation visited Revere Monday night and into Tuesday morning.

Around 8 p.m. on Monday night, a full cadre of federal investigators descended upon 364 Ocean Ave. to pursue a piece of the investigation into the Boston Marathon bombing.

Apparently, a young Saudi Arabian man who was at the bomb scene had been tackled by a witness to the bombing. That witness turned the man – a Saudi national about 22-years-old – over to Boston Police and indicated the man had been acting suspiciously before the bomb went off. There was no definite proof the man had any connection to the bombing, though.

Later, it was reported nationally that the same Saudi national was being questioned and was a ‘person of interest.’ Several sources were strongly indicating on Tuesday the Saudi man tackled at the bomb scene was the same Saudi man who lived at 364 Ocean Ave.

That is apparently what led investigators to the apartment – though the Saudi man was said to have been cleared by authorities late on Tuesday.

Getting cleared by the feds didn’t come, though, until after an extensive investigation at the Revere Beach high-rise.

During the raid, scores of police vehicles from the feds to the State Police to the Boston Police and to Revere Police and Revere Fire clogged the circular driveway for several hours as the work in the building unfolded, which included the use of all sorts of technical equipment – including X-ray machines – alongside bomb-sniffing dogs.

Revere Police Lt. Amy O’Hara confirmed on Tuesday that they were on standby and assisted several federal agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), in looking into a part of the ongoing Marathon investigation.

Fire Chief Gene Doherty said they were called to the scene around 8:54 p.m. by the State Police Bomb Unit for an operational standby. He said that is a procedure used when the Bomb Unit is checking out a package or something similar and wants the Fire Department to be on scene in case something goes wrong.

The investigation centered on the fifth floor of the building at 364 Ocean Ave.

Reports indicated that those on the scene were State Police, FBI, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) agents, Boston Police, bomb technicians, and State Police detectives.

Agencies employed an x-ray machine to scan for any suspicious materials in one particular apartment on the fifth floor. Apparently, there was something that caught their eye, and the entire 4th, 5th and 6th floors of the building were evacuated.

Doherty said they were told to station firefighters on the fifth floor near the fire standpipe system and with fire extinguishers. Paramedics were also told to be there as well.

After some time, nothing had happened and the tense situation seemed to slow down a bit. Doherty said it didn’t appear that they had found any major breaks in the case.

Doherty said the State Police released Revere Fire shortly afterward.

However, there were no explanations or debriefings for local first responders.

"Everything was very tight-lipped,” said Doherty. "Even the State Police were out of the loop. It was pretty intense.”

Investigators, however, continued to search the apartment and left with three bags full of unidentified items.

Investigators cleared the scene around 2 a.m. Tuesday morning.

There were no discussions about the raid on the Beach by FBI officials.

The only allusion they would make to the early morning actions were that they were pursuing leads that would take them to a variety of places around the region.

All day Tuesday, it wasn’t clear if the Saudi man from Ocean Avenue was a suspect or whether he was just an innocent bystander who mistakenly had gotten caught up in the flurry of activity.

All signs late on Tuesday seemed to point to the fact that the Saudi man was simply watching the race, and happened to be the first possible lead that investigators tracked down.

The man had apparently come to the United States to study English – that according to a Boston Herald interview on Tuesday with the man’s roommate.

The two men lived with a third roommate, who is out of the state right now.

The building at 364 Ocean Ave. has had its share of problems over the last few years, mostly due to the fact that there is a high-turnover rate for residents. That’s because many of the units are apparently sublet to International students who are studying at universities in Boston and Cambridge.

In October 2011, Revere Police arrested a North Korean man who got drunk and couldn’t speak English – in the process breaking into the 10th floor apartment of men who were sleeping and punching them in the face. The man was a student at a local college and had come to a party in the building, but after smoking a cigarette outside, was too drunk to remember how to get back to the right apartment.

In May 2012, police arrested a Moroccan man living in the building for alleged sexual assaults that took place in and around the building. When police responded to arrest the man, he retreated into his apartment and tried to set the building on fire.

Elderly residents of the building – who have lived there for many years – have phoned the Journal repeatedly over the last two years to say they are fearful and scared of the people who now live there.


 
 

Broadway Revere Gets a New Look

4/17/2013

Street Lights Giving Broadway a New Look

April 17, 2013
By

Antique light fixtures this past week have added a touch of the past to a Broadway corridor that has seen better days, and will hopefully have much brighter days ahead.

After laying the electrical groundwork for the project last summer, crews moved in quickly last week and began installing the black, antique streetlights late last week.

Mayor Dan Rizzo and City Planner Frank Stringi said it is Phase I of what they hope to be a complete new era for the Broadway corridor.

"This is the first part of our overall plan to revitalize Broadway, the city’s Central Business District,” said Rizzo. "Our goal is to completely transform the look and feel to create a warm and inviting destination where business would like to locate and residents and guests to dine and shop. We believe that a vibrant and relevant downtown will portray a positive image of a city that is on the move, and over time, present more options for people to gravitate towards.”

Stringi said that for a short period of time, the old lights and the new lights would be in place. In about four weeks though, the old lights will come down, leaving only the historic lighting in place.

"Right now, we’ve done the central stretch from Hyde Street to Central Avenue on Broadway,” he said. "We’d like to extend it so it goes all the way from Beach Street to Mountain Avenue. This, however, is just the first phase for the lighting.”

Economic Development Director John Festa told the Journal that in two weeks, the City would have a meeting with the Broadway Advisory Committee. That meeting would focus on parking.

"We want to look at the parking issues in the area,” he said. "We’re going to have some really nice drawings for ideas at the Municipal Parking lot and Aucella Court, as well as the demolition of the old Police Station area.”

Beyond that, Stringi said this summer they would begin working on streetscape improvements in the Broadway area, including new crosswalks, curb ramps, new trash receptacles and new tree planters.

"As we go along in the program, we’ll do a full design of the Central Business District with things in place like bump outs and plaza areas,” he said.

The third part of the program will focus on storefronts, and includes a program to help storeowners fund such improvements to their façade or signage.

In fact, Stringi said the plan is to pay 100 percent of a signage upgrade for storeowners – up to $5,000 – provided that the signage and lighting conforms to the new district standards.

"We want to pay 100 percent for signage and lighting as a real incentive to get this going,” he said. "We’re looking for things like the gooseneck lighting and signs such as you see on the rehabilitated building across from City Hall.”

For the façade program, he said storeowners would be eligible for a 50 percent matching program that could provide as much as $25,000 in assistance.

"That will be a 50 percent match program,” he said. "If a storeowner has a $50,000 project, we can fund them up to $25,000. I think that’s the only way to complete the program and get such investments. It’s not really encouraging uniformity. We want every property to be different and unique, but also to meet guidelines and keep things attractive – accentuating the architectural design of some of the older buildings.”


 
 

Harley Davidson coming to Linden Property in Revere

4/10/2013

Harley Dealer Coming to Linden Sq. Property

April 10, 2013
By

A major change is afoot in Linden Square as a vacant supermarket and broken down health club is in line to be replaced with shiny silver tailpipes and a Northeast headquarters for the squeals of Harley-Davidson "hawgs.”

The Boston Harley dealer – long a fixture on Revere Beach Parkway in Everett – has filed plans with the City that would clear the path to build a huge, new Harley complex on the current retail site that, admittedly, has seen better days.

The plan includes gutting and rehabilitating the existing buildings and putting up a new facade. However, before any of that can happen, the company must get a zoning change and a special permit from the City Council. The zoning change will be heard on April 22nd.

Attorney Gerry D’Ambrosio said the company will purchase the property for $12 million and put another $3 million into completely refurbishing the existing buildings – a grand total of $15 million in new investment.

"They envision this being a dealership in Massachusetts that will be a home base and which will be one of the largest franchises in the United States,” he said. "The City has been very receptive to this new development. They want this to be their flagship headquarters for the Northeast. It’s a marquee name these day – Harley-Davidson. They’re not cheap bikes. They’re the Rolls Royce of motorcycles. Their target audience is yuppie professionals.”

For the record, the zoning change includes adding Class I and II motor vehicle sales to the Industrial Park Zone. Currently, that use is not allowed in that zone. If that change is approved, the company would pursue a special permit before the Council, perhaps as soon as late May.

City Councillors said on Monday they had some initial concerns about having loud motorcycles relocating to Revere, but after seeing preliminary plans, most indicated that it looked like a good use.

Councillor Charlie Patch said he had very little reservations about it at the moment.

"I’ve seen some of the drawings and I think people will be pleased with what they want to do on the site,” he said. "It’s a dead area right now and you hate to see those areas stay dead too long. To me, it sounds like a good thing. I hate empty buildings and we don’t need another food market there…Even with the name Harley-Davidson coming to Revere, that’s a big name a little plus for Revere.”

Councillor Stephen Reardon said a new Harley dealership would likely bring a new kind of customer to that area of the city.

"Really, if you think about it, these are expensive motorcycles and their clientele are doctors and lawyers and other professionals who have the money to spend on these bikes,” said Councillor Stephen Reardon, who is the chair of the Zoning Committee.

Councillor Tony Zambuto was also favorable to the plan – at least at first glance.

Boston Harley specializes in new and used Harley-Davidson motorcycle sales, and they also have a pretty active service department. They are listed as the premiere dealer in the Boston area, and also sell a good deal of accessories.

They are currently located at 1760 Revere Beach Parkway, Everett, and their parent corporation – Black Marble Motorcycles LLC – is based out of North Hampton, NH, where they own all of the New Hampshire franchises. The partners in the company – all of North Hampton – are Daniel Stay, John McGonagle, Shawn Lillie, and Alan Contois.

The current owners of the property are Squire LLC and Wesley LLC, both based in Belmont. A storage building on the Malden side of the property is also reportedly included in the land acquisition.

D’Ambrosio added that the new administration has been key in attracting businesses like Harley.

"Mayor Rizzo and Economic Development Director John Festa have really done a marvelous job at reinventing the City’s reputation of being extremely friendly to new business,” he said. "I think that has served as a facilitator for a lot of the newfound interest in Revere…Harley-Davidson is a perfect example of that.”


 
 

Waugh's of Revere Closes its doors.

4/10/2013

Waugh Auto Repair Closes Its Doors

April 4, 2013
By

Another legendary Broadway family business is heading to the history books.

Waugh’s Automotive on the corner of Broadway and Fenno Street will close its doors for the last time on Saturday, April 6th, and Dick and Terry Waugh will enter into retirement.

It will be the first time that a Waugh hasn’t reported to work on that corner since the 1930s.

"I came here when I was in high school and worked here while I was in high school,” said Dick on Monday, after announcing the shop’s closure. "When I was still in high school I used to run errands for my father into Boston to get parts. I enjoyed that and all the other work and really fell in love with the business. I worked my way into it and took it over 51 years ago from my father. That was March 25, 1962.”

While Dick Waugh runs the shop, his brothers are also corporate partners in the family company. They include, Samuel of New Hampshire, and twins Harvey (of Lynnfield) and Roger (of Revere Beach). Dick was also a 1954 graduate of Revere High School, finishing up before taking over for his father.

Terry said the business began, however, long before Dick Waugh took the reins from his father, Samuel Waugh.

"We think the building was built in the 1930s,” she said. "His Dad started as a Ford associate dealer before World War II and then it turned into a Chrysler Plymouth dealership. After he died, Chrysler had a hard time and we just sold used cars and did automotive repairs.”

Added Dick, "We think we are the oldest existing business on Broadway. We can’t think of anything that’s been on Broadway longer than us. (other than Broadway Motors that has been there for 65 years.) So, we believe we are the oldest.”

They also added that they expanded into parts distribution, and became an official distributorship of Mopar auto parts – a business that was brisk for years.

The shop also enjoyed a prime location on one of the busiest corners of the city, and the Waugh’s took advantage of that location in recent years to make drivers do a double-take at the display in their showroom.

Often one would see a hot rod car, seasonal decorations on the cars, or dolls placed "creatively” on Dick’s refurbished Rolls Royce.

"We went to a flea market once and found these dolls that go on the cars and started by putting one of them out there,” said Terry. "Then it seemed like every season it grew and grew. We actually had one doll dressed in a leather suit – a bikey – and someone broke in and stole it. They found the guy with the doll sitting at a bus stop on Broadway and we got it back.”

Beyond the good years and good feelings amongst customers, employees and business colleagues – there is a deeper sense of loss with the closing of Waugh’s. Like so many before it, long-time businesses like Stearn’s Hardware, Maggio’s Restaurant and others have seen long runs come to an end over the last 10 years. For many who have lived in Revere for generations – or even for 10 years or so – the closing seems to feel like another sign of the end of an era.

"It is the end of an era here,” said Terry. "Big business doesn’t care as much. You’re not a face or a person or a friend. You lose that individuality that smaller shops had.”

Dick agreed, "The personal touch is gone in a lot of businesses. Individual attention in business is gone – at least the way we did it – and it’s sad, but life moves on.”

Dick reminisced about doing repairs for people on credit, letting them pay when they could; about giving major discounts to elderly customers who could never have paid full price; and about people who had been taken advantage of by less reputable shops.

"I had to be honest,” he said. "That was just my way. The horror stories we got. People would come in and be so upset about what had happened to them. We would look at it and find a simple fix and they were always so relieved. That’s why we leave with mixed emotions. The people of Revere and the surrounding areas are just fantastic.”

Added Terry, "They’re not only good customers, but also they’ve come to be friends over the years. People here have been so loyal to Dick over the years.”

Nevertheless, looking over their shop, both Waughs – who are in their 70s – said they are ready to retire so they can spend more time with their three children and three granddaughters. A sale of the building is pending, and Joe Green of Century 21 D’Amico is representing the family. While they could not release specifics, they said it would be a similar business and wouldn’t be apartments or condos.

They said they wished to thank former employees Tommy Gallant, Kenny Wilson, Robert Carbone, Mary Gates and John Stewart – among many others.

As the discussion came to a close on Monday, Terry asked Dick if it was a good time to retire.

He leaned back in his chair, thought about it, and said, "Yea, it sure is.”