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Friday, January 5, 2024

2024 Report to the Community

Happy, healthy new year to you and yours!

Please join me for my annual “Representative’s Report to the Community”. I will share the work for constituents, our Towns of Needham, Dover, and Medfield, and the Commonwealth. Most importantly, I will listen and learn as we discuss your issues and concerns and plan for

the work of 2024.

See you soon!

District Updates

 

 

Needham

  • Attend a free seminar on injury prevention in the winter hosted by the Charles River YMCA and Elliott Physical Therapy on January 10th. The seminar will be held at the Charles River YMCA (863 Great Plain Ave) from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm. The seminar will teach ways to prevent risks of back injury and heart attack while shoveling. Shoveling snow is a common cause of back pain and can exacerbate an existing back injury, and it is also a common cause of a heart attack. For questions, contact charlesrivery@ymcaboston.org or call 781-444-6400.
  • Join a mindful discussion on navigating mental health resources for kids on Wednesday, January 10th from 7 to 8:30 pm. The free event will be held at Broadmeadow School. Hear from healthcare professionals how to identify warning signs that may indicate that it’s time to seek help and where and how to seek mental health resources for children and teens. For more information, click here. To register for the event, click here.
  • The Needham Free Library is seeking teen volunteers for its all-new Teen Library Group. This is a great way to serve community service hours. For questions on volunteering, contact Erin Bassett at neeya@minlib.net. Applications can be found at the Circulation and Reference Service Desks.
  • Needham Affordable Housing Trust’s Small Repair Grant Program is accepting applications. The program provides limited financial assistance to income-eligible senior and disabled households to help repair and rehabilitate existing owner-occupied housing units in Needham. Grants up to $5,000 per applicant are available. Completed applications must be received by Friday, January 12, 2024. To learn more about the program and how to apply, click here.

 

 

Dover

 

  • Persons over the age of 65 may qualify for tax relief exemption programs. Property Tax Exemption for Person Over 65 (Clause 41c) administered by the Assessor’s Office may qualify seniors for an exemption that discharges a taxpayer from the legal obligation to pay a part of the tax assessed for the fiscal year. Other property tax relief exemption programs are available. Applications are due April 1, 2024, for fiscal year 2024. Contact the Assessor’s office at 508-785-0032 ext. 241 for an application or additional information.
  • The Dover Recycling Committee encourages households to participate in the collection of food waste at the Transfer Station. This program is available to all residents with a RED transfer station sticker which is available at the Transfer Station or Town Garage. Help the Town achieve it’s goal of turning food waste into a renewable energy source. To learn more, click here.

 

 

Medfield

  • Medfield Outreach is thrilled to announce that over 90 children received holiday gifts thanks to generous community sponsors. Sponsors include Christmas Angels, Dan Goulet and the Clients of Fitness Together Medfield, Alyssa Valente and family, and the INVEST Program at Medfield High School. The Medfield Coalition for Suicide Prevention (MCSP) was created in 2017 with the mission to promote the mental health and emotional well-being of all community members, to raise awareness, reduce stigma, and educate our community to help end suicide. If you are interested in learning more about the coalition, please email medfieldoutreach@medfield.net.
  • Nomination papers for the Annual Town Election are now available at the Town Clerk’s office. Nomination papers are due back to the Town Clerk’s office by February 5th at 5 pm. The Annual Town Election will be held on Monday, March 25th. To view open positions, click here.
  • The Blue Moon Bagel Cafe and Medfield Lions Annual Coat Drive will continue through February! Bring your new or gently used coats to Blue Moon Cafe and drop them in the collection box located just inside the front door. Coat donations will continue to be accepted through February 28th. For more information, click here.

 

 

Statewide Updates

 

  • The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has drafted updated procedures as part of its continuous efforts to improve its system of General Supervision under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and is seeking public comment on these drafts. The draft procedures include school monitoring procedures and Problem Resolution System Office procedures. Links to the draft procedures are posted on DESE’s special education webpage. The public comment period will close on Friday, January 26th.

 

  • The Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) has opened an application with $4 million in total funding available for large-scale capital projects at early education and care programs. Center-based nonprofit child care and out-of-school time programs that serve low-income families can apply for $500,000 – $1,000,000 per project to acquire property or renovate a facility, expanding capacity and promoting quality learning environments for young children. These grants will improve program facilities, add classrooms, and aim to increase the number of state-subsidized childcare spots across Massachusetts. To learn more, click here.

 

  • The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) is allocating $50 million to support the state’s mandated emissions reduction requirements, including, as outlined in the Clean Energy and Climate Plan, conserving 40 percent of the Commonwealth’s natural and working lands by 2050. EEA will invest this funding in forest conservation and incentives that encourage municipal and private landowners to adopt climate-oriented management approaches. To learn more, click here.

 

  • The Massachusetts Department of Public Health urges residents to get vaccinated before the holiday season. Getting vaccinated (flu, COVID, and RSV) will maximize protection against respiratory illnesses. Protect yourself and the people you’ll gather with, especially older adults, people who are immunocompromised, and pregnant people, who are at a higher risk for severe complications. To learn more, click here.
  • The Biden administration continues to offer up to four free tests per household in anticipation of a potential increase in COVID cases during the fall and winter months. At-home testing is essential to slow the spread of the virus and reduce the number of new cases across the Commonwealth as the weather gets colder and more events move indoors, increasing the risk of transmission. To place an order, visit COVIDTests.gov.
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