The Massachusetts Constitution lets citizens verbally confront public officials, even to the point of calling them Hitlers, and officials can't just kill the microphones to shut up angry people up at public meetings, the Supreme Judicial Court ruled today, throwing out a Southborough town bylaw that required "civility" at Town Hall meetings. Read more.
Sam Adams was hardly civil to authorities and Massachusetts residents today don't have to be, either, court rules
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Selectmen in Southborough have agreed to postpone that most hallowed of small-town New England traditions - the annual town meeting - from March until sometime warmer due to Covid-19 concerns, mysouthborugh.com reports.
The board will decide on a new date, at which townsfolk gather to discuss and vote on the town budget, at a meeting Jan. 18.
MySouthborough.com reports on an incident serious enough for Southborough schools to notify police and parents, involving a teacher who mistakenly let somebody IDing as just "iPhone" into a class about to start, only to have the person display "an inappropriate profile image" to the three students who had already logged in.
Transit Police report an outbound Worcester Line train was delayed Saturday night so police could deal with a man clad in a sombrero and poncho discovered clinging to the top of one of the cars.
According to a police report, the 28-year-old Worcester resident had a bit too much too drink on a pub crawl in Boston:
MySouthborough.com reports a black bear was spotted romping through downtown Southborough this morning (cut it out - of course Southborough has a downtown). With photo.
MySouthborough.com reports a school in Southborough has banned Silly Bandz, those shaped rubber bands that stores can't stock fast enough:
... "The bracelets are distracting, they are being traded, and children are having conflicts because of them," [the principal] wrote in the letter. ...
Southborough selectmen decide what town employees say on their own time at dinner is their own business
My Southborough reports selectmen have dropped their investigation into allegedly bitchy comments some department heads allegedly made about another department head while eating dinner at a Pizzeria Uno:
With the exception of Brian Ballantine, all of the named employees attended the executive session, many with their lawyers in tow. Police Chief Jane Moran — the reported subject of the comments made at Pizzeria Uno on the night in question — also attended the session.
The MetroWest Daily News reports selectmen are pissed about some comments about the selection process for a new police chief on My Southborough. They want to know who really wrote the comments.
My Southborough blogger Susan Fitzgerald responds, says she's not giving up the names of her commenters, even if she doesn't agree with them:
My Southborough reports the U, whose medical school runs a primate lab in town, has pledged $50,000 over three years for a new ladder truck the town is buying. The New England Center for Children pledged $120,000 over ten years; St. Mark's and the Fay School both committed to $100,000 over ten years. As in Boston, the non-profits pay no taxes in Southborough.
Cool photo of a pickup truck on fire in Southborough this morning (well, the owner, who got out safely, probably doesn't think so).
My Southborough reports Town Meeting last night approved a $300 fine for spliff sucking - and gave the police chief the power to bring criminal charges against local pot fiends, even though she told Town Meeting she has no intention of re-criminalizing pot possession in the town.
Blue Mass. Group reminds us that today's the anniversary of the deadly Worcester Tornado of 1953.
The name's actually a bit of a misnomer, since the tornado continued down Rte. 9 to almost the Framingham line - one of its last spasms was to flatten the Fayville post office in Southborough.
Co-worker Jason Meserve went into the woods along White Bagley Road and the Sudbury Reservoir in Southborough today in search of our local bald eagle. He found him.
This photo doesn't really do justice to the bizarre thing those of us on the Rte. 9 side of our office building saw around 4 p.m. - hundreds of seagulls or terns pinwheeling above the Sudbury Reservoir. Sure, seagulls aren't that uncommon out in Southborough, but not so many, and not so many all flying in circles together. Gah, is it: DEATH FROM ABOVE? I just looked out my window: There aren't as many of them now, but the ones that are there are still flying round and round, just waiting for me to try to get to my car ...
You may have heard about the LNG tanker that overturned on the turnpike out by 495 this morning.
My office building is on the eastbound side of Rte. 9, between 495 and the Framingham turnpike entrance. Guess which road they've diverted all eastbound turnpike traffic onto? Guess which road is the ONLY way out of my office park? Gah! Somebody send over a blimp! And nobody set anything on fire here, m'kay?
The scene out my office window a few minutes ago.
Somewhere in Southborough, a transformer caught fire about 20 minutes ago. So no more rushing air from the heating system, no hum from the fluourescent lights or the refrigerators. If I get close enough to our main lunchroom, though, I first feel, then hear the throbbing from our emergency diesel generator, which is keeping all our network systems and servers up. A pity it can't be connected to our emergency lights, since every fourth one seems to be out, including the one in what was a pitchblack stairwell (until somebody propped open the fire door).
Some nice lightning displays this afternoon, although nothing approaching the storm the other night, at least, not out in Southborough, where I took the above shot around 5:20 p.m. from my office off Rte. 9.
The commute home down Rte. 9 east was kind of weird. To the left (i.e., north), a beautiful sky with plenty of blue and these wispy, high clouds. To the right (south), dark, menacing thunderclouds, with plenty of lightning (the scene above would have been on the right had I been passing my office building at the time) and rain.