Lowell City Council Agenda: Jan 14, 2020

Here are the City Council motions and a report on the 75 Arcand Drive eminent domain taking from the agenda for Tuesday’s Lowell City Council meeting:

CITY COUNCIL – MOTIONS

  1. Nuon – Req. City Mgr. provide update regarding review of inspection and enforcement procedures within Developmental Services to determine if better efficiency can be achieved through transfer of data via tablets or other electronic means with the aim of improving turnaround time without adding personnel.
  2. Nuon – Req. City Mgr. have Parking Director instruct staff to check pay stations during daily routes and report any malfunctioning meters each day.
  3. Nuon – Req. City Mgr. have proper departments (Law, Human Relations) provide a report on feasibility of residential requirement for public employees in City of Lowell.
  4. Nuon – Req. City Mgr. provide a report regarding status update on the Smith-Baker building.
  5. Elliott – Req. City Council vote to establish a subcommittee on Election Redistricting.
  6. Elliott – Req. City Mgr. provide an update regarding bridge construction on VFW highway at Beaver Brook.
  7. Conway – Req. City Mgr. meet with Police Superintendent and Fire Chief to provide a report and update regarding “Wellness Programs” for our first responders.

REPORTS

75 Arcand Drive eminent domain taking (from City Solicitor’s response):

Dear Manager Donoghue, Mayor Leahy and Members of the City Council:

I write in response to a request that “the Manager provide the Council with a report regarding the negotiations and relocation and other charges concerning 75 Arcand Drive.

Following the City’s taking of 75 Arcand Drive, the owners were paid $2.6 Million for the value of the property, otherwise known as the pro tanto payment. The City’s payment of $2.6 Million was based on an appraisal of the property prior to the taking. Pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws owners may seek compensation beyond the pro tanto payment, in essence asserting that the property had a value greater than the pro tanto payment. In the present case, the former owners of75 Arcand Drive have filed suit in Superior Court challenging the amount paid by the City. The case is in the discovery stage, and the City is currently awaiting responses to its discovery requests. To date no evidence, such as an additional appraisal report, has been presented indicating that the City’s pro tanto award was insufficient. Once discovery is complete, the law department can provide the Council with an additional status report.

With respect to relocation efforts, progress continues to be made pursuant to the State-approved relocation plan. The City of Lowell’s approved relocation plan defines the time period in which occupants are to be relocated, and requires that all compensation for relocation costs in excess of$50,000 must be approved by the State. To date, two of the Doctors have agreed to relocation figures and, in turn, the State’s Bureau of Relocation has approved the relocation amounts agreed to by the parties. Specifically, the Bureau has approved a relocation payment to Dr. Montminy in the amount of $129,820.00, and a relocation payment to Dr. Ross in the amount of $745,792.78.The approval letters are attached. At this point, all of the doctors have now identified new locations, and the City’s relocation expert will continue to work with the Doctors’ relocation expert in reaching settlements as to the remaining relocation claims.

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