Cambridge InsideOut - May 17, 2016

Guest: Will MacArthur, CRLS Senior

Will MacArthur

Topics du jour:
1) CRLS student government to use PR and IRV for student government elections [Register Forum]
2) Detracking, leveled classes vs. heterogeneous classrooms and differentiated instruction
3) Dress code at Rindge and other day-to-day stuff
4) Relative appreciation for sports and arts - especially in the context of a state basketball championship

5) More Budget Hearing highlights
6) Cambridgeport Neighborhood Association meeting at 7:00pm at Central Square Library - Bob Flack and Mass&Main update; oral history of C-Port with Ed Rice, Barbara Taggart, Elechi Kadete, and Laura Kershner (and Bill Cavallini)
7) Open Studios and Harvard Square MayFair highlights
8) Recycling Advisory Committee letter recommending changes to the Polystyrene Ordinance to cover expanded polystyrene (EPS or "Styrofoam") only
9) Upcoming events and opportunities
10) Presidential primary - the latest miserable updates

Thurs, May 12

9:00am   The City Council's Finance Committee will conduct a public hearing to discuss the FY2017 City Budget. This hearing to be televised.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Public Works
Community Development
Public Investment
Human Services
Cambridge Health Alliance     
Cable TV
Conservation Commission
Historical Commission
Peace Commission
Police Review & Advisory Board     
Women’s Commission
Human Rights Commission     
Veterans Services
Public Celebrations
Cherry Sheet
Debt Service
Summaries Section
Revenue Section
* Date changes for individual departments may occur. The public is invited to attend and be heard.
These hearings will be cablecast live on Municipal Television.

5:30pm   The City Council's Neighborhood and Long Term Planning, Public Facilities, Arts and Celebrations Committee and the Civic Unity Committee will conduct a joint public hearing to discuss all issues related to non-citizen representation and outreach in Cambridge.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Mon, May 16

4:00pm   2016 Scholarship Award Ceremony  (Sullivan Chamber)

5:30pm   City Council Roundtable/Working Meeting to receive an update on Envision Cambridge. No public comment. No votes will be taken. Roundtable/Working Meeting will be televised.  (Sullivan Chamber)

Wed, May 18

4:00pm   The City Council's Human Services and Veterans Committee will conduct a public hearing to discuss the opioid crisis in Cambridge with representatives from the Human Services Department and the Cambridge Police Department, as well as local providers.  (Sullivan Chamber)

6:30pm   The City Council's Housing Committee will conduct a public hearing to discuss the recently completed Inclusionary Housing Study and will focus on receiving feedback from the community.  (Citywide Senior Center)

Fri, May 20

10:30pm   The City Council's Government Operations, Rules and Claims Committee will conduct a public hearing to consider an extension to the current City Manager’s contract. This hearing to be televised.  (Sullivan Chamber)

City of Cambridge Citizens’ Committee on Civic Unity and the City of Cambridge Present
Cambridge: Who We Are and How We Got Here - May 26

City SealThe Citizens’ Committee on Civic Unity and the City of Cambridge invite you to the event Cambridge: Who We Are and How We Got Here on Thursday, May 26, 6:30-9:00pm, at Cambridge College, Room 152, 1000 Massachusetts Avenue. This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. Families are welcome!

Join us for a special presentation by Charles Sullivan, Executive Director of Cambridge Historical Commission and Clifford Cook, Planning Information Manager for the City of Cambridge, on the dynamic demographics of Cambridge and how the diverse community we love came to be.

The presentation will examine the diversity of the City, including when and how different groups of residents came to Cambridge, how the City’s demographics have evolved over time, and some of the conditions that have fostered changes in the community. The presentation will be followed by facilitated group discussions and an opportunity to share your thoughts and questions.

This community event, which helps connect the City’s past with the present, is intended to lay the foundation to better understand the context of the current demographics in Cambridge, as well as to help identify and explore new opportunities to build community connections and conversations.

The present day Citizens’ Committee on Civic Unity began meeting in early 2015 and builds on the history and work of Cambridge’s prior Civic Unity Committee, which existed until 1992 and was formed to address racial discrimination faced by returning World War II veterans.

The mission of the Citizens’ Committee on Civic Unity is to foster fairness, equity, unity, appreciation, and mutual understanding across all people and entities in Cambridge. The group aims to do this through recognition and awareness of historic, existing, and potential civic issues; providing opportunities for honest dialogue and engagement; and by building bridges across different communities.

Please visit for additional information and to RSVP for this event. [Flyer for event]

event flyer

Cambridge Commission for Persons with Disabilities Vacancies

Cambridge City Manager Richard C. Rossi is seeking persons interested in serving on the Cambridge Commission for Persons with Disabilities (CCPD) advisory board. Made up of 11 Members who serve three-year terms in a volunteer capacity, the CCPD board meets on the second Thursday of every month at 5:30pm.

CCPD seeks to build a membership that reflects the cultural and racial diversity of the City, is cross-disability in nature and representative of the different geographical areas of the community. Members must be current residents of Cambridge.

CCPD works dynamically to maximize access to all aspects of Cambridge community life for individuals with disabilities, and strives to raise awareness of disability matters, to eliminate discrimination, and to promote equal opportunity for people with all types of disabilities – physical, mental and sensory. CCPD members are expected to work with other members and CCPD staff to fulfill the goals and objectives of the CCPD Ordinance (CMC Chapter 2.96). CCPD members are expected to attend monthly meetings, participate in subcommittees, and work on various short and/or long-term projects, as needed.

City SealFor more information, contact Kate Thurman, Cambridge Commission for Persons with Disabilities at or 617-349-4692 (voice) or 617-492-0235 (TTY). Interested persons should submit a letter by Friday, June 17, 2016 describing their relevant experience and the kinds of disability-related issues or projects that interest them (along with a résumé if possible) to:
Richard C. Rossi, City Manager
City of Cambridge
795 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139
Fax: 617-349-4307

Rep. Tim Toomey Kicks Off Re-Election Campaign

Tim ToomeyState Representative Tim Toomey announced today that he has officially qualified for the Democratic Primary ballot on Thursday, September 8th for re-election to the 26th Middlesex District seat representing parts of Somerville & Cambridge. Toomey submitted nearly three times the required 150 certified signatures.

Rep. Toomey is hosting a Campaign Kick Off meeting at Atwood’s Tavern, 877 Cambridge St, Cambridge on Thursday, May 19th at 7 pm and has invited everyone interested in helping in the campaign to attend. Refreshments will be served.

“I’m grateful to all of the Somerville and Cambridge residents who have again placed their faith in me to serve as their State Representative,” said Toomey. “I’m very excited to be running this year and plan to continue to lead the way in our community for better public transit options, sustainable development, fair wages and equal pay for working families, and expanded affordable housing options.”

“I look forward to continuing my work at the State House because our neighborhoods deserve a progressive State Representative who also provides outstanding constituent services to the residents of Somerville and Cambridge,” said Toomey, a lifelong resident of the district.

During his time in office, Rep. Toomey has become a well-known progressive advocate and has consistently been a voice for progressive causes at the State House. In the past year, Toomey has been an outspoken leader for single payer health care, promoting solar energy and other renewable energy sources, instituting smart criminal justice reforms, and providing rental assistance programs to help struggling low income families and people with disabilities find long-term housing solutions. He has also worked to strengthen protections for survivors of domestic violence and rape, and has been a leading voice behind efforts to expand access to drug treatment and rein in the opioid crisis.

“A lot of important work is still ahead of us,” said Toomey. “I will continue to fight for passing the Fair Share Tax Amendment, making insurance coverage mandatory for a wider variety of contraceptives, passing the Equal Pay Act, adding protections for gender identity in public accommodations and increasing funding for low income and affordable housing.”

For more information about Representative Toomey’s re-election campaign, residents are encouraged to visit or contact Tim’s Campaign Manager, Jefferson Smith, at (978) 376-2143.

City Manager Seeks Members for a new Commission on Immigrant Rights and Citizenship

City SealMay 9, 2016 – Cambridge City Manager Richard C. Rossi is seeking persons interested in serving on a Cambridge Commission on Immigrant Rights and Citizenship. The Commission will consist of 11 volunteer members to be appointed by the City Manager. Commissioners are expected to be knowledgeable about immigrant rights and citizenship and must be residents of Cambridge. It is desirable for this Commission to be fully representative of the diverse Cambridge community.

Cambridge welcomes immigrants and wants to encourage their success and access to opportunity and advancement in this country. It will be a goal of this Commission to get the message of welcome out, through collaboration with organizations that already provide services and outreach to our immigrant community. The Commission will act as a centralizing organization in Cambridge, to address immigrant rights and citizenship issues. Through collaboration with other Commissions and service providers, outreach efforts to different cultural and language communities, and identification of existing resources, both in Cambridge and regionally, the Immigrant Rights and Citizenship Commission can assist in finding ways that existing services can better meet the identified needs of our immigrant population.

Commissioners are expected to work with other members of the Commission and staff to fulfill the goals and objectives of the Cambridge Commission on Immigrant Rights and Citizenship Ordinance (CMC Chapter 2.123).

Resumes and letters of interest should be sent by June 10 via email to or by mail to:
Richard C. Rossi, City Manager
City of Cambridge
795 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139
Ph. 617-349-4300; Fax 617-349-4307

May Programs at Fresh Pond Reservation

These events are FREE and open to the public. Children are welcome in the company of an adult.

Dates: Thursdays 10am to noon
Place: Meets at the volunteer trailer in the front parking lot.
    Join our weed-warrior crew! We are Fresh Pond citizens dedicated to keeping invasive plants at bay for the benefit of wildlife, water and humans alike. No experience or long-term commitment necessary! All tools are provided; sturdy shoes, pants, long-sleeves and a water bottle are strongly recommended. Please contact Martine at 617-349-6489 or for any RSVPs or questions!
Dates: Fridays 9 to 10am
Place: Register for parking and meeting information
    Join us for casual nature explorations, designed for young kids and their parents/caretakers, and play in our urban wild! Please come dressed ready for the weather (and in clothes that are OK to get a bit dirty). Register with Catherine Pedemonti at
Date: Monday, May 16th, 6:00pm to 7:30pm
Meeting Place: Front door, 250 Fresh Pond Parkway
    Find out how water that falls as rain in the suburbs 10 miles west of Cambridge is transported to Fresh Pond, and then tested, treated, and delivered to the City’s residents and businesses! You’ll have the chance to speak with water treatment staff, see the equipment in action, and check out our water quality lab. Advance notice is appreciated if coming with a large group. For more information or to RSVP, please contact Martine at (617) 349-6489 or
Date: Saturday, May 21st from 1:00 to 3:00pm
Meeting Place: Maynard Ecology Center, lower level of Neville Place, 650 Concord Ave.
    Mr. Higgins, a Professional Geologist and Steering Committee Member of the Massachusetts Geologic Society will be presenting an afternoon talk on the geology of Fresh Pond. Did you know that Fresh Pond rests on top of a buried bedrock valley? Or that deposits of clay were once mined in the area? Please join Mr. Higgins to learn firsthand about the geology of the Fresh Pond area. The goal of this presentation is to help people understand the geologic processes that formed the Fresh Pond landscape of today.
Date: Sunday, May 29, 8 to 10am
Place: Register for meeting location and parking information
    By the end of May our avian summer residents have returned. We may see tree swallows, catbirds, grackles, red-winged blackbirds, phoebes, vireos, warblers and orioles. At this time many will be nesting, so we may also hear baby birds, and see their parents bringing them food. Beginners are welcome. We have binoculars to lend and will show you how to use them. Led by Nancy Guppy. To register and for important meeting and parking information, email Catherine Pedemonti at

Unless otherwise specified, please contact Martine at 617-349-6489 or for any RSVPs or questions!

Would you like to join Friends of Fresh Pond Reservation? Membership in Friends of Fresh Pond Reservation costs only $10 per year ($5 for seniors and students, $15 for families). To join, fill out a membership form available in the Ranger Station information racks, e-mail, call 617-349-6489, or visit our website at to download a form.

Keep up to date on events at the Pond. Visit the Friends group website at to learn more about Friends group activities and the reservation and its inhabitants. Upcoming Programs