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Adams Cemetery Commission Gets Engineering Bill

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
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ADAMS, Mass. — Some members of the Cemetery Commission aren't happy about the cost of a $20,000 engineering study.
The commissioners had some concerns at their recent meeting after being hit with a $10,000 bill for a structural analysis of the Bellevue Cemetery garage and a $9,500 bill for a systems analysis from EDM Services for a report that they have yet to see. 
"We have to see the report because right now we are in limbo," Chairman Jim Taylor said. "Let's get the report and go from there. That's all we can do."
For the past few months, the commission has pursued a resolution for storage issues at Bellevue Cemetery. With one shed on the verge of falling down, all the town has to rely on for storage is an old cement-block garage.
Former Town Administrator Tony Mazzucco contracted EDM before he left his post to survey the current garage and look at different options such as updating the structure, adding on to it or building an entirely new structure.
However, some commissioners did not recall issuing permission to the town administrator and Commissioner Fred Hobart did not recollect giving Mazzucco permission to go ahead.
"I never voted to have this analysis done. Tony brought that to us, He did it on his own," Hobart said. "I'm not taking this money out of our funds it should come out of the general fund ... Tony left us hanging."
Commissioner Bruce Shepley said the commission did give Mazzucco permission to begin the study and although they should have asked him where the money would come from to fund the study, it is still part of the project.
"Let me put a different spin on it. We didn't ask where the money would come from, but nobody objected," he said. "This is related to the project and we have been discussing this for three or four months. Whether it is engineering or a feasibility study, it's part of the overall cost."
He added that Mazzucco attended meetings in the past and did tell the committee he was still waiting on the report and the commission never questioned him.
Taylor agreed that the commission did give the town the go-ahead but thought the reports would contain costs analysis and options instead of engineering.
Department of Public Works Director David Nuvallie said all projects legally need engineering and the report itself may have these different options in it. He said the report is probably complete.
"I am sure a report was generated for both those bills there has to be a report," he said. "We just don't know where they are. Probably somewhere in the building."
Interim Town Administrator Donna Cesan informed the commission that she had a copy of the report and was unaware that the commission did not receive one.
"I think we need to make sure you all have that information and I would be happy to come to your next meeting because I need your input," she said. "Again, I am sorry I did not know that you did not get that information."
In other business, the commission said cremation burials will cease until April because of frost.

Tags: cemetery commission,   

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