Monday, July 22, 2024

These are just some of the municipal meetings and civic events for the coming week. More are on the City Calendar and in the city’s Open Meetings Portal.


Volunteers clean the perimeter of Jerry’s Pond and the east side of Yates Pond in North Cambridge during the May 7 PondFest. (Photo: Neheet Trivedi)

Updates on student supports

School Committee Special Education & Student Supports Subcommittee, 5 p.m. Monday. This hearing chaired by Ayesha Wilson will get updates about the Office of Student Services and talk about planning for the spring. Watchable online.

Changes in police procedure

City Council, 5:30 p.m. Monday. The sole policy order councillors may consider was also on the agenda a week ago but withdrawn temporarily by its author, departing councillor Quinton Zondervan. It’s back with suggestions for police around averting “violence and death” – such as having fewer firearms and avoiding foot pursuits, as recommended by a university think tank – because the city’s police department hasn’t acted on big changes since the Jan. 4 killing of Arif Sayed Faisal in Cambridgeport. There are also city staff reports on rat control measures; a request from the Charter Review Committee for a little more time to finish work reviewing the city’s 80-year-old governing document; a Law Department analysis of how to carry over unfinished work from this year to January’s new council; and word from the city manager about updating the city’s agreement with Harvard University on the payments it makes in lieu of taxes. The agreement was set in 1990, renewed in 2004 with a 20-year term that ends June 30 and is subject to 10-year extensions through June 30, 2054. “To provide space to have these conversations, Cambridge and Harvard are working to extend the current agreement through Dec. 31, 2024,” Huang said, though completion of the work is expected within just a couple of weeks, by Dec. 20.

The council meets at City Hall, 795 Massachusetts Ave., Central Square. Televised and watchable by Zoom videoconferencing.

Deciding on public investments

Finance Committee, 1 to 3 p.m. Tuesday. This committee run by city councillors Dennis Carlone and Patty Nolan looks at public investment planning and how it fits in with projects such as municipal broadband over the next few fiscal years – if the city can’t afford everything, how does it prioritize? The committee meets at City Hall, 795 Massachusetts Ave., Central Square. Televised and watchable by Zoom videoconferencing.

Best and worst for Cambridge

Cambridge Day end-of-year drop-in, 4 to 5 p.m. Tuesday. Stop by and say what you think was the best thing to happen in (or to) Cambridge in the past year, and what was the worst. The opinions will help shape end-of-year articles looking back at 2023. In the lobby of Cambridge Community Television, 438 Massachusetts Ave., Central Square. (Can’t make it? Send your best and worst to [email protected].)

Changes on Cambridge Street

Safety Improvement Project on Cambridge Street open house, 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday. The third of three public events this year on separated bike lines between Inman Square and Second Street, during which staff will gather feedback on safety concerns and answer questions. Watchable by Zoom videoconferencing.

The future of Jerry’s Pond

Neighborhood & Long Term Planning, Public Facilities, Arts & Celebration Committee, 3 to 5 p.m. Wednesday. This committee run by city councillor Dennis Carlone continues a discussion from Sept. 27 on the future of Jerry’s Pond, the fenced-off former swimming hole soon to be returned to use as a public space (though still not for swimming). The talk is focused on the Rindge Avenue side, where thousands of lower-income residents live. The committee meets at City Hall, 795 Massachusetts Ave., Central Square. Televised and watchable by Zoom videoconferencing.

Examining the Faisal inquest

Public Safety Committee, 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday. This committee run by city councillor Quinton Zondervan discuss the results of an inquest about the fatal Jan. 4. police shooting of Arif Sayed Faisal in Cambridgeport. The inquest, released Oct. 5, found the shooting was justified. The committee meets at City Hall, 795 Massachusetts Ave., Central Square. Televised and watchable by Zoom videoconferencing.

Foundry lease for Lemelson-MIT

Cambridge Redevelopment Authority, 4 to 9 p.m. Wednesday. The agency overseeing Kendall Square and related development looks at authorizing $285,000 in renovations to prepare 4,030 square feet of third-floor space in the Foundry community building to become offices for The Lemelson-MIT Program, which awards invention. Lease negotiations would be authorized as well. Watchable by Zoom videoconferencing.

School district communications

School Committee Communications & Community Relations Subcommittee, 6 p.m. Wednesday. This hearing co-chaired by Fred Fantini and David Weinstein reviews the school district’s communications plan and hears a website update from Information, Communication & Technology Services. Watchable online.

Parents’ school climate survey

School Committee School Climate Subcommittee, 6 p.m. Thursday. This hearing chaired by Caroline Hunter plans to discuss school climate surveys distributed recently to parents and other caregivers via the online Parent Square platform – with a focus on the construction and parameters of the survey, since results won’t be available. Watchable online. (Update on Dec. 11, 2023: This meeting has been canceled.)

Central Square city lots study

Central Square Advisory Committee, 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday. An inventory of city-owned property showed so much of it in and around Central Square – a baker’s dozen of unused, overused and empty lots and buildings – that a separate Central Square Municipal Property Needs Assessment and Planning Study has been done. Five of the sites are parking lots where city councillors have called repeatedly for affordable housing to be built. A community engagement stage on figuring out uses is underway; all work on the city-owned property project is to be done in December. Watchable by Zoom videoconferencing.