News

This is where to find out what's going on here in Hawley, MA. CLICK for bulletins relating to Hawley Events, Meetings, Office Hours.
Gearing Up for a Great One on Fathers' Day . . .

WITH ONLY THIRTY DAYS TO GO, the Sons and Daughters of Hawley are busy doing the collecting, sorting, arranging and tagging that have been the hallmarks of every one of their Tag Sales since time began.  Event organizer Beth Thwing reports that she and her 'Tag Team' are accepting donations NOW for this important fund-raiser. 

If you have something to give, call Beth at 339-0124 to set a time that will work for the staff and for the Grove and to ensure a smooth hand-off.

"Last year we introduced a new system where we labeled tables so people could unpack their own contributions and place them at the appropriate locations," Beth comments. "This was a major help -- it reduced wear and tear for me and allowed our donors to participate in the aesthetics of the display."

Following that same basic theme, Beth indicated that "If ambitious people want to do their own tag sale, they can rent a 10 foot x10 foot space outside at the Grove building for $25 and piggyback on the Sons & Daughters' publicity.  Checks should be made payable to the Sons and Daughters of Hawley and sent to Serra Root."

Beth adds, "Lots of things can have a good second life in someone else's  possession, but what NOT to bring can probably stand repeating:  Please DO NOT contribute clothing or shoes, used computer components, small appliances that don't work, large appliances, or things that are broken, worn beyond use or grossly dirty."

Expanding further on this year's innovations, Beth reports that the event will be ". . . a Village Festival as much as a Tag Sale."  (More to follow on the 'Festival' side of things later.)

OK, so when is the Sons and Daughters of Hawley Tag Sale?  See the box below.

Sons and Daughters of Hawley Tag Sale
Father's Day, June 21, from 9AM to 4PM, at the
Grove.

TOWN MEETING ACCOMPLISHES THE SEEMINGLY IMPOSSIBLE (Monday evening, May 11) -- A combination of skillful management on the part of Interim Moderator Scott Purinton and last-minute motions changing the Town's approach to two potentially-controversial issues resulted in an Annual Town Meeting that successfully addressed some 50+ warrant articles in under 21/2 hours.  About 80 registered voters were in attendance, filling the Town Office to beyond capacity.  Scott Purinton was elected Interim Town Moderator so that Moderator Lark Thwing could address a number of issues regarding Town finances and WiredWest from the floor.

The Town Meeting's actions on the pivotal warrant items were as follows:

Article # 53:  The Home Rule Petition/Recall Vote Bylaw -- This was referred to a committee to be appointed by the Town Moderator.  The purpose of the committee will be to carefully review the Bylaw contents for possible revisions, enhancements and the need for further possible vetting by legal counsel and MA legislative staff before re-submitting it to Town Meeting for further action.  This decision came about as the result of a motion from the floor.

Articles # 54 and 55:  WiredWest -- These two items were replaced via an amendment that would allow the Town to remain affiliated with WiredWest, but to chart a much less expensive course than the one implicit in the current MBI/WiredWest model. The new motion serves, in effect, as ratification and reinforcement of actions taken by the Communications Committee and the Selectboard in the weeks leading up to the Town Meeting.

All other warrant articles were passed with minimal debate and opposition.  The meeting was adjourned and the chairs put away by 9:40 pm.  Special congratulations go to Scott Purinton for a job well done.

For reference, a .pdf of the warrant document can be downloaded HERE.
Of Compost Pails & Earth Machine Bins & 
Hazardous Waste & Next Clean Sweep . . .
THE FRANKLIN COUNTY SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT DISTRICT (FCSWMD) HAS issued a new bulletin addressing a number of topics and programs and containing some important dates for summer and fall.  Click to retrieve a copy HERE.
From Virginia Gabert . . .

NEW TRANSFER STATION STICKERS are in!  For Hawley residents, stickers are still $25 for the first one, and $1 for an additional sticker.  This year we have re-usable shopping bags at the Town Office!  1 free with a full-priced sticker for now.   If we still have some left over mid-summer, they will be available to anyone interested.

FEMA SNOW DISASTER RELIEF PROGRAM TO SKIP OVER FRANKLIN AND BERKSHIRE COUNTIES -- A recent bulletin by the Bureau of Local Services (BLS) of the Mass. Department of Revenue (DOR) indicates that the ten counties earmarked for relief from the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) do not include Franklin and Berkshire Counties.  Also excluded are Hampshire and Hamden.  This seems unfortunate in that FEMA's new, more flexible approach includes reimbursements for "costs for removing snow, undertaking emergency protective measures, and repairing damage to public facilities" that were caused during any 48-hour period "with a nexus to the disaster declaration of January 26-28, thereby increasing the potential overall reimbursement amount as long as it relates to the initial storm."

Bottom line?  There is more money, but not for the Hilltowns.  Click HERE to download the full set of bulletins from DLS. 

THREE MORE DAYS TO APPLY FOR A GRANT FROM THE STATE TO UPGRADE OLDER WOODSTOVES -- If you have an older woodstove you’d like to replace with a newer, more efficient unit, you may want to look into the Commonwealth’s Woodstove Change-Out Program which is offering grants of up to $2,250 for homeowners who install more efficient EPA-certified wood or pellet stoves.

The Commonwealth Woodstove Change-Out Program, a partnership between the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, the Department of Energy Resources and the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, offers rebates to assist Massachusetts residents in replacing non-EPA-certified woodstoves with cleaner, more efficient EPA-certified wood or pellet stoves.

The program is now accepting applications, offering standard rebates of between $1,250 and $2,250 for woodstove replacement.  Applications will be accepted until May 22, 2015.  For information about the program, go to www.masscec.com/programs/commonwealth-woodstove-change- out.

All qualifying applications submitted between April 10 and May 22 will receive a rebate.  The application period may be extended is sufficient funding remains.

IT'S BEEN A TOUGH WINTER AND YOUR HOUSE MAY NEED SOME CRITICAL REPAIRS -- If you meet certain criteria and your house is in need of repair, you may qualify for a housing rehab loan that you may never have to pay back until you sell the house, and then at only fifty cents on the dollar. 

Want to learn more?  Click HERE or on the image at left (updated material).

TOWN NURSE SCHEDULES ADDITIONAL LOCAL WALK-IN CLINICS FOR 2015 -- Lisa White, BS, RN, Regional Public Health Nurse, has scheduled the three more (free) clinics for the Hawley area for 2015:

♦  Tuesday, April 14;
♦  Tuesday, May 12; and,
♦  Tuesday, June 9.

♦ All three clinics will be held from 10:30 am to 12:00 noon at the Charlemont Federated Church on Route 2 in Charlemont.

♦ Click HERE to download a flier with more information.

CPHS, OPOID TASK FORCE COLLABORATE ON NEW DRUG-DROP LOCATION -- The Town of Buckland Police Station is the latest location where unwanted drugs, both prescription and otherwise, can be dropped off for disposal with no questions asked.  The Buckland drug-drop-point will be open as of Monday, February 9.

Jointly funded by the Cooperative Public Health Service and the Ophoid Task Force, the drop-off consists of a specially- designed "MEDRETURNBOX" that allows for multiple "deposits" but no "withdrawals."  The new Buckland location is one of seventeen located throughout the area.  Here is the full list:  

♦ Amherst
Athol
Belchertown
Buckland
Erivine
Easthampton
Deerfield
Granby
Greenfield
Hadley
Montague
Northampton
Orange
South Hadley
Sunderland
Ware
Williamsburg

REMINDER:  TOWN EMAIL ADDRESSES HAVE CHANGED -- Now that the Town's broadband internet connection has been tested and found viable, the Hawley Communications Committee is working on changing all official email addresses over to to the same format as the website.  Email addresses will be issued for all officers using the following format:

. . . . @townofhawley.com.  

The purpose of this change is to tie the addresses to the town domain name instead of to Internet Service Providers (HughesNet, Crocker, CornerStone, etc.), thus giving the Town more flexibility in the future and eliminating duplicate fees.

The following five email addresses have been created and/or changed:

Name Function(s) Email Address
Virginia Gabert ♦ Admin Assistant
♦ Assistant Treasurer
♦ Board of Assessors
♦ General Inquiries
info@townofhawley.com
Pamela Shrimpton ♦ Town Clerk townclerk@townofhawley.com
Stephen Deane ♦ Chief of Police policechief@townofhawley.com

Elizabeth (Betty) Nichols ♦ Treasurer
♦ Tax Collector
treasurer@townofhawley.com
collector@townofhawley.com

When changing these addresses, remember to change them in your mobile devices as well as your computer.  If you are using an email "client" like MS Outlook to handle your mail, remember as well that any lists you have created there may also have to be updated.

If you use the former addresses for these three people/functions after August 31, the messages you send will "bounce back" to you.  To recover, forward your original message (it will be in your "sent messages" folder) to the correct address.

You'll always be able to find the email addresses for the Town on this website.