In Brief

By Phil Orlandella

Small Cell Towers Public Hearing

The Boston City Council has voted to set up a public hearing regarding the potential of installing small scale cell towers in the City’s neighborhoods.

The hearing sponsor At Large City Council Mike Flaherty noted, he has been hearing many complaints from all of the City’s neighborhoods because there is not a good deal of communications between the public utilities cell phone companies and the City in terms of placement for the small cell towers.

MBTA Invests Millions for Winter Service

More than $101 million dollars has been invested by the MBTA, in capital improvement projects in an effort to continue steps taken to make the transit system more resilient and severe weather.

Customers are being encouraged to prepare for the winter commute by staying connected: sign up for T-Alerts, follow @MBTA and @MBTA_CR on Twitter, use the Transit app or the MBTA commuter rail app, and visit the MBTA website to learn about service information.

Funding for Artists Doubles

A second round of applications for the Boston Cultural Council Opportunity Fund, as a result of the high demand from the first round, funding will double announced Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh. Applications are currently available.

Artists have the opportunity to secure a total of $200,000 in funding to support meaningful one-time chance to further develop the career and expanding the reach of art opportunities in communities.

“The Boston Creates cultural plan calls for growing support of local artists,” the Mayor said.

Initiatives Launched to Increase   Economic Mobility

Cities for Financial Empowerment (CFE) Coalition has met with Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh at a recent conference and launched two programs to increase economic mobility for residents. The initiatives will be aimed at increasing residents’ credit scores and providing access to reliable, non-predatory banking and financial products.

CFE is a coalition (non-profit) that works to improve the financial stability of low and moderate-income households through local government.

Boston was selected to become a member of the Coalition in 2015 as a result of the Mayor’s commitment to address the City’s income and inequity.

City Receives Reaccreditation

The City of Boston and the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) has received re-accreditation through the Emergency Management Accreditation Program (EMAP) a comprehensive program that evaluates the City’s program across 64 standards that address all aspects of Emergency Management.

“Receiving EMAP reaccreditation demonstrates the City of Boston’s continued emphasis on preparedness and our ability to respond to and recover from emergency situations,” said Mayor Martin J. Walsh.

Councilor Pressley Calls for Hearing

A hearing order has been filed by At-Large Boston City Councilor Ayanna Pressley to consider the impact of rising global temperatures on Bostonians particularly seniors living in large apartment buildings.

Currently, Massachusetts Housing Code requires landlords to begin heating apartment buildings on September 15, regardless of outside temperatures, and some buildings do not allow individual units to control their heating or cooling systems.

Landlords and tenants are wasting double the energy counteracting sometimes oppressive temperatures inside units, affecting the quality of life issues for seniors, putting their health and well-being at risk.

Ranked 4th        Most Bicycle Friendly State

According to the League of American Bicyclists bi-annual state report card, Massachusetts has been ranked the fourth most bicycle-friendly state in the nation.

In addition to retaining its top-five status nationwide from 2015, the Commonwealth was also ranked #1 overall in the eastern region of the United States.

The state was especially commended for its high score in the Infrastructure & Funding category of the report card evaluation.

Boston 311 Technology Launched

A new crowdsourcing effort to gather data that will power the City of Boston’s new 311 web interface has been launched.

The new interface will use a computer model that takes a description of the user’s issue and suggests case types that are most likely to fit the description.

            “We’re committed to using data to improve City services and make the lives of our residents easier,” Mayor Martin J. Walsh said. “The stronger dataset we have to power the 311 system, the more efficient the service will be.”

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