Aldermen Notes: MaxPac labor hearing set

by Tom Nash on February 1, 2011

The Board of Aldermen met Jan. 27, discussing the possibility of a local hiring amendment and MaxPac, among other issues. The full video is available here.

Desmond calls for local hiring amendment

In the wake of the controversy surrounding the lack of union hiring at the MaxPac development, Alderman-at-Large Bruce Desmond has put forward an order that would amend the city’s employer ordinance to increase local hiring on job sites.

“My hope in offering this amendment is that Somerville workers … have the opportunity to work on these projects, and not be cut out by workers being brought in from Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island or anywhere outside of Somerville.”

The amendment would call for any project funded in whole by the city to use 50 percent union labor, with 25 percent of the jobs being available to minorities and women.

“We as a Board of Aldermen need to address unemployment issues in this city, and people who are losing their jobs,” Ward 2 Alderman Maryann Heuston said. “It’s very important that we take this step and try to do right by the people of this city.”

The proposed changes are available here.

MaxPac labor hearing set for Feb. 17

A Legislative Matters Committee of the Whole will host a public hearing on the labor issues surrounding the MaxPac development Feb. 17 at 6 p.m.

Alderman-at-Large Dennis Sullivan has asked for the meeting to be televised.

Housing director retires

Director of Housing Phil Ercolini received a citation for his service both to the mayor and for 33 years of service to the community, having served under seven mayors and five governors.

Ercolini said he was proud that the city had gained nearly $36 million in funding for affordable housing and other projects during his tenure as director of housing.

“Phil is the type of guy that everyone wants in their neighborhood,” Ward 1 Alderman Bill Roche said. “The City of Somerville is losing a great employee.”

Mayor Joseph Curtatone noted Ercolini’s family has played a part in activism in Somerville, recalling when I-93 came through the city.

“Going back to the days when I-93 was bulldozing homes, and displacing hundreds of people in the city, they stood in front of the bulldozers,” Curtatone said.

Boston Burger Company wins Rachel Ray competition

Aldermen commended Davis Square-based Boston Burger recently won a national “best burger” competition hosted by TV chef Rachel Ray.

The restaurant will be competing against other celebrity chefs this month in Florida.

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