Several councilors spoke in favor of diagonal parking.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The proposal for diagonal parking on Main Street was referred to the Public Safety Committee on Tuesday night but not until after more than 20 minutes of debate at City Council.
The yearlong parking experiment planned for the north side of Main Street ran again into objections from Councilor John Barrett III, who described it as "the craziest idea I've seen come forward."
Barrett said previous attempts at diagonal parking had been sparked by downtown parking problems that no longer exist. Putting in diagonal parking without a study would cause "havoc," he said and doesn't take into account the desires of the public.
Councilors David Bond and Keith Bona said they have heard repeatedly from businesses in the downtown that there was a desire for more parking. Bond, who works for major property owner Scarafoni Associates, said there is a serious problem with safety because of the speed of traffic.
"We need traffic calming measures," said Bond, adding afterward, "If it doesn't work, we go back."
Bona, who owns a business that would not be included in the new parking plan, said he frequently hears from people about the difficulty of finding parking spots and parallel parking. "Customers want convenience," he said.
Barrett said diagonal parking had been looked at in 2007 when the streetscape project was being formulated but there was no desire to move it forward. The public's needs should be foremost, not the businesses, he said.
Councilor Lisa Blackmer countered that without the businesses, there's no reason to go downtown.
"I hope the public shows up [at the Public Safety Committee meeting] and says what they think," she said. "I have heard people complaining that it's too fast, that there aren't enough spots."
Mayor Richard Alcombright said a lot of thought had been put into the plan and pointed to its success in Lee, Northampton and Greenfield.
"It's never been a problem but it did create a slow traffic environment," he said, adding that while safety was the paramount issue, "we want people to stop and shop."
In other business:
► The council referred a report on delinquent taxes from the mayor's office to the Finance Committee. Administrative Officer Michael Canales said he is the process of distinguishing between the late payments to determine consistencies and will also provide the committee with state laws on collections.
► Approved a motion to have Scanlon & Associates attend the next council meeting, or the one after, to answer questions about the city's annual audit and management letter.
► The mayor read a letter from the city's bond counsel stating that the order to rescind $3.2 million in unissued bond debt two weeks was in order but suggesting the next time, they review it.
Barrett, who had opposed the order, said the information from the city's bond issuer, UniBank, was wrong and that the age of the bonds didn't matter and the funds would not be limited by time or rate.
"I just don't think I should have $3.2 million of open credit," said the mayor. "There's accountability ... If I need $500,000 for streets tomorrow, I will come to the council and ask for $500,000."
► The council renewed the secondhand licenses for Hudson's at 1112 Mass MoCA Way and MaryAnntiques at 615 Ashland St., and a license for Michael Girard of West Road, Clarksburg, to drive a taxi for Lori Smith, pending a signature from public safety.
► Also, Robert Cardimino was removed from the City Council chambers by police after refusing to put down a sign criticizing the council president and two members.
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Bender please give up the signs and stick to the important issues that the city is facing.
It is clear that the business community has taken over the government of this city and this is because 95 % of the residents have given up on it.
Thank you President Bloom for having Mr. Cardimino removed from the chamber - he continues to disrupt every Council meeting. I agree with the mayor and members of the council that diagonal parking would be great for those of us who frequent Main Street. Parallel parking is difficult for some of us and having close proximity to shops would be most helpful. JB3 lives in the past and is always ready to criticize everything the mayor brings up - if he can't have it his way he is apt to take his football and go home. Let those who want to move out city forward go ahead with their work.
This biweekly story is starting to get old. Councilor Barrett continuously reminding us of the differences between his style and Mayor Alcombright's and Robert Cardimino - the side show. Isn't this exactly what everyone expected John Barrett to do once he got on the City Council, oppose anything and everything put forward? How can anyone oppose eliminating unissued bond debt? Is this what he meant when he said his experience would help the City move forward?
Diagonal parking is a fantastic idea! It works in Northampton, Lee, Cape Cod, as well as many other cities and towns. Those towns have easily 10X the amount of traffic that North Adams has or more, and they don't have accidents. With 2 new eateries opening, as well as other possible additions to the downtown...the time has come again. This will definitely slow down the absolute "speedway" that downtown has become. If anyone is against this, they are either the speeders, don't care about pedestrian safety, don't want North Adams to have a nice downtown feel again, or are simply against anything the mayor puts forth. Why not try it at least and see how it works?
I understad the council must have rules but. If someone is sitting down and not moving or saying anything is a distrrbance , what about the person that was moving around taking photos ?? That is clearly against the Open Meeting Law. Sounds like the city council is only interested in harassing Mr.Cardimino.
Bob Cardimino and his 3 supporters really do not understand that it is their actions, not those of the council, that have become a pathetic display of immaturity. It is clear that this is akin to a 4 year old's tantrum. The issue is not the first amendment, but rather Bob himself.
If I were a parent, I would never let my child act the way that Bob does. Evidently he thinks that by making a scene he will get what he wants (which at this point I have no idea what that is. Maybe an ice cream cone?). Petulant 78 year old child.
Great job by the council Pres. It's about time something was done and disruptions to the meetings were dealt with. It's bad enough as it is with one councilor seemingly intent on hijacking the govt to suit his own agendas along with treating it like some grammer school civics class in need of his tutoring.
How can diagonal parking be a safer way than what we have now? Imagine trying to back out of a space into on coming traffic. For older people it would be a problem as it would take forever for on coming traffic to open up so one could back out. Also i think there would be a visabilaty issue in backing up. I agree somewhat with Mr. Barrett in leaving well enough alone.
thank you for allowing me to give my opinion.
while watching the disruption, why wouldn't the city have an officer at the meeting anyway?
seems like every meeting, certain people get a kick out of disrupting the mtg.
It's his right to attend. but he has no right to be disruptive while the council is trying to make this place a better community.
We all can't agree on everything. But everyone is trying to make this a better community.
My vote is for a full time police officer to be present and therefore, councelors can focus on the topics. not some attention seeking pain in the ^%$^
Mr. Cardimino constantly cries about his 'rights'. He had the right to put down the sign, he refused, he had the right to 'withdraw from the meeting when asked', under the open meeting law, he refused. So he was granted his 'rights' under the open meeting law to be removed by the police.....moral of the story, be careful what you ask for.
just how many times to we have to try this parking thing ,we have tryed it many times before to all you newbies to the city and it never realy took off ,besides northhamton main street is much wider and we have a center island to deal with and greenfield has also much wider main street as well .why don,t we try somthing differnt like opening up new stores before we change parking.
For or against diagonal parking: how can people argue that roadways should be designed for old people because... what? because they can't drive? How-about you hand in your license if you are unable to look behind/ around you to back up... or go forward for that matter.
Barrett is a pain in the A**!!!! He did enough damage in 26 years and he's only on the city council because 3 other people got a few less votes than he did. He definitely isn't there because he's popular and honestly, his shenanigans as city council member are making him even less likable than he ever was before. We need to TRY diagonal parking, which is all Mayor Alcombright is asking for (along with downtown businesses and apparently their customers). If it doesn't work, we go back to what we have now. I'm guessing the whiners complaining about the possibility of diagonal parking visit downtown businesses once a year as it is (if that). Let's keep putting JBIII in his place and find a few great candidates for the next election so we don't have to hear from this clown anymore (at least not until he's an old man sitting in the front row of council meetings holding a sign--then the police can deal with him).
Its clearer and clearer after each and every council meeting that the majority of the councilors are there for their own interests, NOT THE BEST INTEREST of the residents for whom they are SUPPOSED to be there to represent. What a joke!
This argument is ludicrous! Why does our tiny little main street need 5 lanes, and 30-40 MPH? Take the lane right behind the parking spaces, and make that the "backing out lane". The only way accidents happen with diagonal parking, is when
A. People are speeding and can't stop in time for "backing" vehicles.
B. People don't know how to properly back their cars up.
C. Overall poor driving skills.
The speed limit for main street should be 20MPH, and if you can't back your car out of a diagonal parking space...you shouldn't be driving.
Do those that can't back out of a diagonal parking space just avoid Northampton, Greenfield, Lee, Cape Cod, Lake George, and all other places with diagonal parking...if so, go back to driving school please because you are a driving hazard.
Traffic calming measures? What about the Council asking the Mayor to request the Police presents "Daily" on main st.
"Criticizing the Council President AND Two members? is that now called "Connotations" because nothing in open forum says anything about Criticizing. only to "Shall Avoid Personalities"
note the words SHALL. what a joke to watch on TV, makes fora good evening every other tuesday night.
I know the Council has Rules of Order , but nothing is better then it was before, just maybe they should go back to the old rules and play fair with the public and not try to be "Big Brother",
Editor, since you chose not to call Bloom on this I will....or perhaps he should start to be called "Mr. Clinton".
Last night Bob Cardimino said he owed liens at 91-94 Blackington St. Bloom with a big smirk on his face said he didnt own any property on Blackington St. He does. Go to masslandrecords.com. It's 14-16 Blackington.
Reaks of arrogance. And I am sure Bloom's response will be "he got the numbers wrong". Punk.
So if at the next city council meeting, another member of the gallery sits there quietly while holding a sign that criticizes Mr. Cardimino for his disruptive and nonsensical behavior, he will applaud that person for exercising his/her first amendment rights??? I think not! He needs to become a man of his word: when he lost the election, he said he would not be attending city council meetings going forward. Please keep that promise and stay at home!
yes mr Editor ,it has been done before go back and look if your that young and don,t remeber i,ve lived here for 59 years i should know this .it was done in front of the hub building and was done from the now "local" to the pizzia place on the corner moultons was pizza house back then .it was on a trying bases,anyone thats been here for some time can tell you that once in the barret years was one time.never said nothing more about till this week now they want to do it again .go back and look in the papers
Under Massachusetts Open Meeting Law,or State or Federal Law,their is nothing regarding a "Sign"
or does the North Adams Rules of Order say anything about disruption/distubance, the 9th circuit court of appeals has stated last year that one must have in the Rules of Decorum, and North Adams does not.
#3. of the Court Ruling:
A presiding officer of a public meeting may eject an attendee for disturbing or impeding a meeting, so long as the government body has rules of decorum that define "disturbance in a manner that includes "Actual" disturbances.
Reality and Cardimino are idiots. The Certificate of Municipal Liens for 14-16 Blanckington is a document provided by the city to a lender to demonstrate that NO LIENS ARE OWED!!! And chances are good that that document was prepared to facilitate the sale of the building to somebody else. (Hence Bloom's claim that he does not own property there.)
This is the same crap they pulled on Dave Bond (and with someone else, but I can't remember who) in these comments over the last couple years.
Those comments are absolutely defamatory. Luckily Bloom understands the level of intelligence he is dealing with, otherwise these geniuses would end up with a letter from his attorney and end up being publicly humiliated with a forced retraction and apology.
to "Reality": Mr. Bloom sold the property 14-16 Blackinton Street, North Adams on February 15, 2007. See the Deed in Northern Berkshire Registry of Deeds in Book 1280 Page 1115....get your facts straight before you make accusations.
Ever watch "Slingshot" on NBCTV? Mr. Cardimino is a regular there. Why? I don't know. He's allowed to spew his venom for an hr each week with no controls on him. But do check it out to get an idea of what his version of "free speech" is. If you call in and don't agree with him, first he pretends he can't hear you (no doubt to give time for the gears to grind and allow him to formulate a response), then he starts on a rant. The caller can in no way get a word in and might even be called a "coward", "stupid", "idiot"... you get the idea. Terms Mr. Cardimino is familiar with. Seems to me those callers are being denied their "Freedom of Speech".
Editor Disruption ? What disruption ? The man was just sitting , he did not say a word. You were more of a disruption that he was. You shouold have been asked to leave not him. He did not stand up and move around the room with a camera like a fool .
The only people that thinks that it takes 3 well armed men for 1 , 87 year old are decendents of concentration camp guards.
The thing I have to say about Mr Cardimino claming that President Bloom owns property at 41-43 Blackinton Street is a bold outright lie! I live on Blackinton Street and for anyone who wants to drive by and see.......41 is in one building and 43 is in a different building. As a matter of fact number 35, 37, 39 and 41 are all in one building and number 43 and 45 are in a different building. Mr. Cardimino needs to get his facts straight because I know the landlord personally and it isn't President Bloom!
Diagonal parking is just a diversion to eliminate parking meters in the downtown area to benefit the merchants. And, when will the proper decorum happen in regards to video taping and photos being taken at the meetings as it is a disturbance to the visitors in the gallery.
I sometimes watch Slingshot on thursdays and it is time to get someone on there other than Cardimino..he doesn't let the caller finish stating why they called before he starts in with his opinion and name calling. he does not listen!
As far as diagnol parking on Main St, if it's just to control speed of traffic, maybe it's time to have a police cruiser/officer on the street and start ticketing the speeders/violators.
Let me see. The city council let people put up art for sale in the chambers. The city council let someone advertise a book at a council meeting. Oh. And the person selling the book was asked to read some of it during the meeting. The council allowed someone to advertise for a benefit dinner many times during a council meeting. The city council lets someone record personal conversations and jump up and down during the meetings to take photos . Both are aginst the law. Now one man sits and says nothing , holding a sign was a Disturbance ?? I want to be in court the day you and the mayor try to convince a judge of that . L.O.L.
Editor: Only $4,400.00 heck the Mayor has already spent over $3,500.00 didn't he? the meter loss on 29 spots would have to be around $7,000.00 alone
and what is the cost for the lines ? to me it would be maybe around $10, 000.00 or better when its over? Whats you total take?
It is hilarious to get on here and see all the people from the town that have a hissy fit over trying out diagonal parking. People make it out to be this big huge disaster. That is why the city can never grow and prosper because everyone crabs and moans about a minuscule change like the way you park on a street.
And then we make a big deal about a guy holding a sign and people taking pictures of a meeting. It's called the press and they are everywhere and are a lot worse in other places than NA. It's like the big juicy gossip that some guy had a sign and got thrown out of the meeting and it's worse because somebody is doing there job and in involves new technology that baffles people who still use record albums. I can't wait until the next generation of people get into the council and start focusing on making real changes instead of worrying about some guy with a sign. The guy obviously has no life and he gets everyone to pay attention to him for his 15 minutes of fame a week.