Duxbury Reporter front page for March 26, 2010

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  • 8/9/2019 Duxbury Reporter front page for March 26, 2010

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    GateHouse Media www.wickedlocalduxbury.com FRIDAY, MARCH 26, 2010 44 Pages 4 Sections Vol. 23, No. 13 75

    SEE PAGE 7

    Business Profile

    Mike Gill

    SEE PAGE 4

    CandidatesQuestions

    Find out what they think

    DATELINE . . . . . .21

    FAITH . . . . . . . . .23

    FILM TIMES . . . . .21

    LIBRARY . . . . . . . .6

    OPINIONS . . . . . .10

    PUZZLES . . . . . . .22

    SENIORS . . . . . . . .9

    SCHOOLS . . . . . . .9

    SPORTS . . . . . . . .13

    INSIDE

    THIS WEEK

    Theresalwaysmoreonline

    www.wickedlocalduxbury.com

    Say noto Norwell

    SPORTS

    SEE PAGE 13

    Priced right

    SEE INSERT

    SEE INSIDE

    Progress 2010

    Tee oneup, tie

    one onGolf course operatorwants to serve

    drinks on the green

    By Matthew NadlerMNADLER@CNC.COM

    DUXBURY Golfers know whatthe 19th hole is; the managers oNorth Hill Golf Course are interestedin creating the 5-1/2th hole.

    Representatives of Johnson Golf,which manages the course, wants per-mission to have a drinks cart servingalcoholic beverages out on the courseduring some events.

    Johnson Golf has a license to serveliquor in the clubhouse.

    Steve Follansbee, attorney forJohnson Golf, said the cart would onlybe used for league matches and out-ings, which he defined as charitableevents.

    He explained that having on-coursedrink service would make North Hillmore attractive to groups planningsuch events.

    However, given concerns raised bytown counsel Bob Troy, and their ownworries, selectmen decided to hold ofmaking a decision.

    Selectman Jon Witten, who wasspending his last meeting as a select-men, was opposed to the idea.

    Troy warned that the town, which

    owns the course, does not have immu-nity from lawsuits if something hap-pens due to drinking on the course.

    He also noted that once the cart lefta particular location, no one would bethere to observe who was consumingthe alcohol.

    Johnson Golf, Follansbee said, pro-vides full coverage for liquor liabil-ity under its contract with the town.

    Follansbee said the cart operatorwould be TIPS certified. TIPS(Training for Intervention Procedures)is a program that trains bartenders andwait staff in spotting intoxicated andunderage drinkers.

    Its a public course, Witten said.Im dubious this is in the publicinterest.

    I could use a cold beer sometimeson the course, Selectman ChrisDonato noted, who questioned how

    Unionlabel

    School bus driversjoin the Teamsters

    By Matthew NadlerMNADLER@CNC.COM

    DUXBURY Feeling that they werelosing ground compared to their coun-terparts in neighboring communities,Duxbury school bus drivers decided todo something about.

    That something was joining a union.And not any union theyre

    Teamsters now.Driver and newly selected shop stew-

    ard John Gaffney said he and his fellowdrivers decided to organize after watch-ing promised raises evaporate and tradi-tional benefits, such as a Christmasturkey, disappear. They felt, he said,that the companys own financial chal-lenges were being hoisted on them.

    Maybe a Christmas turkey doesntsound like much, but it means a lot,Gaffney said. Were just trying to hold

    the line.Many bus drivers, Gaffney said, are

    working mothers.Weve been getting shorted for the

    while, he said. We can only take somuch.

    Besides, he said, while FirstStudent iscutting back what it provides its drivers,I dont think the town has cut back onwhat theyre paying FirstStudent.

    The Duxbury School Departmentspent $957,528 on transportation dur-ing the 2009 fiscal year. It budgeted$1,010,888 for fiscal year 2010 and$1,046,796 for the upcoming fiscalyear.

    The town charges $270 per student,with a $540 per family cap, to providebus service to any student in seventh

    grade or up, and younger students liv-ing more than two miles from theirschool.

    Duxbury has one more year in its con-tract with FirstStudent, according toSuperintendent Sue Skeiber.

    Meanwhile, drivers who are union-ized, from such places as EastBridgewater, are getting raises.

    The Teamsters have been involved ina national derive to organizeFirstStudent drivers, according to BrianMcElhinney, the vice president ofTeamsters local 653 in South Easton.

    Besides Duxbury, they recently orga-nized Silver Lake and Pembroke dri-vers. The three groups all work out ofthe same lot, according to McElhinney.

    They came to us, he said.

    Silver Lake and Pembroke driversearn more than Duxbury drivers,according to Gaffney.

    The process of organizing was pret-ty quick, McElhinney said, noting ittook about three months.

    Go watch fishBay Farm students study Duxburys waterways

    By Matthew NadlerMNADLER@CNC.COM

    Second of two partsDUXBURY The smelt are running,

    but they arent getting very far.Not that they mind.Like their cousins, the herring, smelt

    leave the ocean to spawn, workingtheir way upstream into fresh water.Unlike herring, they arent com-

    pelled to fight their way upstream tothe ancestral breeding ground. For asmelt, any spot will do.

    One of those spots is at the bottom ofthe Indian Creek fish ladder.

    Which is why Bay Farm MontessoriAcademy middle school studentsfound themselves there as part of theirongoing study of Duxburys water-ways.

    They carefully balanced on the rocksand searched for good spots to watchthe fish from both sides of the creek.

    Counting the smelt is really a damprun for when the herring show up inthe next few weeks, John Brawley

    explained. Brawley is a Bay Farmtrustee, oysterman and president ofenvironmental consulting firmSaquish Scientific.

    Herring have returned to Duxburyrecently, Brawley said. After the con-struction of the fish ladder runningunderneath Tremont Street into Mill

    Pond, the state stocked Island Creekpond with herring in the hopes the fishwould spawn. Last year was the first

    time those fish returned to Duxbury.Armed with their eyes and equipmentpurchased through a grant from WoodsHole Oceanographic Institute, the stu-dents are learning about their commu-nitys connection to the water.

    Theyre learning it, teacher MeaghanHathaway explained, by using, in the

    words of Maria Montessori, founder othe educational movement that bearsher name, Their hands and minds, by

    examining Duxburys waterways andbuilding a pair of rowboats.The day began in the classroom as the

    students, led by Brawley, reviewed thelatest readings from their monitors. Thewater temperature has risen in recentweeks. And reasons are considered.

    SEE DRINKS, PAGE

    Out of the frying panBenefits restored to cafeteria workers, butprivatized food service being considered

    Matthew NadlerMNADLER@CNC.COM

    DUXBURY The lunch ladies gottheir health insurance back, for now.

    Cafeteria workers signed a new con-tract with the School Department thatrestored the hours they lost in October.

    That reduction in hours meant a lose of

    health benefits for them.The hours as a cost savings measure

    after the department lost $128,000 in itsfood services budget last year, which issupposed to be self-sufficient.

    However, the new contract runs out atthe end of the current school year, andthe health benefits are only beingrestored going forward. The workers arestill on the hook for their health carecosts dating back to October, accordingto Mary Critch, shop steward for theDuxbury cafeteria workers.

    And then things get complicated.Duxbury schools are exploring the

    possibility of turning the operation oftheir food services to a private vendor.

    According to Superintendent SueSkeiber, requests for proposals were sent

    out and three bidders responded.They were Aramark, Chartwells and

    Whitsons Culinary Group. All threecompanies are major players in the

    institutional food business, Skeiber said.There are only so many companies thatdo this, she noted.

    Chartwells provides food services forthe Rockland Public Schools. Aramarkprovides East Bridgewaters food ser-vices.

    The possibility of food services beingprivatized worried Critch, who called ita double whammy.

    After having their hours cut and losingtheir benefits, many of the cafeteriaworkers went on COBRA, which allowspeople to purchase, for full cost, whatev-er health insurance plan they had previ-ously.

    Under the towns health insurance

    plan, according to Critch, the town pays75 percent of the employees healthinsurance costs.

    PHOTO/DAVE MACCAFERRI

    God Squad community team member, Father Sean Maher of Holy Family Parish, demonstrates the miracle of spinning a hula hoopwithout moving a muscle at last weeks Are You Smarter than a Duxbury Fifth Grader? event at the Performing Arts Center.

    You can find more photos at www.wickedlocalduxbury.com.

    HOLY HOOPS!

    SEE TEAMSTERS, PAGE 3

    Some of these girlshave put their hard-

    earned lives into this

    job. Its a blow.Mary Critch

    SEE BENEFITS, PAGE3

    PHOTO/DAVE MACCAFERRI

    At a local fish ladder, Bay Farm Montessori Academy students look on as the data

    logger is pulled from the water.

    SEE WATERWAYS, PAGE

    Town ElectionSaturday,March 26

    8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

    At DuxburyMiddle School