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October 29, 2021 Newsletter

Update from the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA)

Northgate's Special Permit Application was received on October 18, 2021.  Links to the Application and Architectural plans are provided below via the links.
 
From this point forward, all of the new and older Northgate Information will be available on this page of the Town's website: https://www.hinsdalemass.com/zba-northgate-info-page
 
ZBA's Review Process
The ZBA is planning to hold two meetings on Northgate's Special Permit Application (more if necessary).  The first meeting will be in November, prior to Thanksgiving.  The second meeting will be approximately three weeks later. Once the dates are set, we will share them via the Town's website and another Newsletter like this one.  These meetings need to be advertised and held in accordance with State Law, which is why they need to be held a few weeks apart.
 
The ZBA will explain more about the meetings when the dates are announced, and residents will be allowed to ask questions following the guidelines set by the Committee Chair.
 
In other news
 
Schnopp Project
 On Monday, October 11, 2021, we received a letter stating the Schnopp Project was denied in this year's Community One Stop for Growth/FY22 Mass Works funding round.  The rejection is disappointing.  Making that worse was the email received that same morning with a link to State Auditor Suzanne Bump's Report on the disparity of funding to western Mass Counties, particularly Berkshire County communities.  Attached is a copy of the Assistant Secretary for Communities and Programs letter and my response to that news. We will continue to pursue funding for Hinsdale's Road repairs and will resubmit next June.

Staffing Updates
At last night's meeting, the Select Board appointed two new staff members: 
 
  • Treasurer-Collector Jennifer Coscia – Jennifer brings a wealth of experience, having served as an Auditor, Credit Manager, Finance Director, and Chief Financial Officer of a large social service organization.  She also runs her own consulting business focused on helping area non-profit organizations succeed with various business challenges. She comes highly recommended by various Berkshire County agencies. Once she gets settled in, we will update the Treasurer-Collector's Office hours.
 
  • DPW Mechanic/Crew Member Mike PatonMike is relocating to the area from New Hampshire and also comes highly recommended.  Mike is currently the head caretaker of a 180-acre working farm, supervising a staff of five.  Prior to that, he was trained and worked as an auto mechanic and has several years of experience as a small engine repair technician.  We are delighted to have him joining the DPW.

Tax Bills
Tax bills will be out next week and will be due the first week of November.  The tax rate has gone down 67 cents.  However, property values have gone up about 10% over last year, so the average Hinsdale homeowner is likely to see an increase in their bill over the prior year.
 
Happy Halloween
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