Open discussion thread: Ask questions, share opinions

by beth on October 17, 2019

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It’s time for another open thread.

What’s on your mind this week, Southborough?

For those of you new to the blog, the open discussion thread is your place to ask questions, sound off on town issues, or share information with other readers. Here are some suggestions to get you started:

  • Ask questions about programs in town or the town itself
  • Post a note about things that you’re selling or giving away, or things that you want
  • Share notices about upcoming events (Southborough or otherwise)
  • Register your thoughts on town issues or news stories
  • Point out interesting or helpful resources

You can add comments to the thread throughout the week. Check back often to see new comments. (If you read the blog via email or RSS, you might want to check the site from time to time for new comments.)

To view past open discussion threads, click here.

(October sunset in Southborough by Jennifer L. Mastrogiacomo)

1 Arborist October 20, 2019 at 7:46 AM

does anyone know if the fire department are going to sell Christmas trees this year.?

2 John Kendall October 23, 2019 at 1:18 PM

My understanding is that yes, the Firefighters Association will be selling trees this year. They will be set up in the golf course parking area behind the new public safety building.

3 beth November 26, 2019 at 12:10 PM

Sorry for the delayed response.

Yes, the Firefighters will be selling trees starting this Saturday, November 30th until they sell out. Hours are M-F 5pm – 9pm and Weekends 9am – 8pm. Trees will be in the golf course parking lot behind the public safety building at 32 Cordaville Road.

4 southsider October 22, 2019 at 9:12 AM

anyone else impressed that Sam Stiver would give up so many of his Saturdays to sit at Transfer Station and be available to chat with citizens? I think it’s a great idea.

5 Interested October 22, 2019 at 3:50 PM

I do not think it’s a great idea. One selectman should not be speaking alone or representing the Board of Selectman all on his own. How much of the information he is giving out is fact vs. opinion?

6 Frank Crowell October 23, 2019 at 10:11 AM

You got to be kidding me – a selectman spends his weekend time to talk to Southborough taxpayers and somehow this is construed into a bad thing – only in Southborough.

7 Interested October 23, 2019 at 10:47 AM

How any one person chooses to spend his free time is not the point. That one person, who happens to be an elected official of the town, is setting up shop at the dump is odd to me. Is this person representing the Board during the time there, or is he talking up his own ideas and points of view? How would someone know if his responses are his own personal opinions or the official and correct answers that would be given if even just one other Selectman was present? I am not questioning his integrity, but just wondering if the dialogue would have a different outcome if presented in a, umm, less causal location. The Board of Selectman do hold open meetings, held at the Town House with 2 or more Selectmen present, for the expressed purpose of chatting with town residents.

8 Matthew Brownell October 24, 2019 at 12:48 PM


I guess I’m not understanding the source or direction of your concern.

For Sam Stivers to volunteer several hours of his time on a Saturday to sit the Town Transfer Station can only ensure that he, and any other dedicated, sitting BOS members, can operate more effectively for the Town.

**Listening** to several dozen (or hundreds) of Southborough citizens who pass through the Transfer Station on any given Saturday can only help any BOS member operate from a more current set of viewpoints, fact sets, upcoming challenges , and chronic problem areas.

I applaud Sam, as his endeavor widens perspective far beyond warming a seat at a monthly BOS meeting.

If we could only get someone to drop off some picnic tables, Kegerator, and food cart with smoked Brat and BBQ victuals ….

9 southsider October 23, 2019 at 11:16 AM

I remain impressed that Sam makes himself available in a very public way. I don’t see this as any different than a congressional representative holding office hours. Nothing’s ‘decided’ during those conversations but Sam is making it easier for citizens to pass along thoughts or ideas or complaints or even compliments! He’s not dispensing policy or enforcing laws; he’s just making it easier for any of us to tell one Selectman whatever we wish.
Thanks, Sam…. I think it’s a great way for you to make yourself available.

10 John Kendall October 23, 2019 at 11:28 AM

I find absolutely nothing wrong with Sam willing to sit and listen. Maybe some of our other select persons could find time to do the same. Less pressure, more openness.

11 impressed! November 26, 2019 at 4:48 PM

I too am impressed that Sam spends some of his free time at the transfer station interacting with the citizens of the town. Consider the possibility he is actually there to listen to what his constituents have to say. Isn’t that a good thing”

I really do not see any downside to his presence at the transfer station.

12 impressed! November 26, 2019 at 4:57 PM

Route 9 Jersey Barrier Openings

Why, oh why do we have uncontrolled (stoplights, etc.) openings in the Jersey barrier at Woodland Road and Middle Road on route 9? These are so dangerous! Collisions at the Middle Road opening seem to be a regular occurrence and near hits/misses all too frequent.

People headed eastbound typically use the Middle Road opening to either U-turn or turn north onto Middle Road – entering Middle Road: in the center of the two Middle Road lanes, into the oncoming traffic of the Middle Road southbound lane, and rarely in the northbound Middle Road lane. The U-turn people usually disregard vehicles turning west onto route 9 from Middle Road.

A few weeks ago while traveling east on route 9 and approaching Woodland Road, a car drove out of Woodland Road and stopped across the left hand route 9 eastbound lane in order to wait for route 9 westbound traffic to clear, as the operator of said vehicle wanted to make a left hand turn onto route 9 westbound – which is prohibited.

The turn onto Woodland road from route 9 westbound is also problematic, with cars backing up into the route 9 westbound lane as they wait to make their left hand turns onto Woodland Road.


13 Arborist November 26, 2019 at 7:31 PM

Thanks Beth– john Kendall took care of it , he told me they were selling Christmas trees this year at the new fire station on rt 85

14 southsider November 27, 2019 at 12:44 PM

Years ago, a group of Woodland Road residents lobbied the Town and gthe State to close the Woodland Road barrier as some kind of pilot project. The use of Woodland Road as a cut thru for so many out of town commuters was dramatically reduced and, of course, the number of accidents around that break in the jersey barrier was reduced to zero. At the end of the pilot, public safety officials claimed permanently closing that barrier hampered their quick response efforts. A possibe “Emergency Vehicles Only” use was never strongly considered.
Last night, there was a terrible accident at the Route9/Middle Road jersey barrier. Not sure of the details but clearly significant damage and likely injuries.
These breaks to allow unregulated traffic to cross Route 9 invite trouble.
And to see tractor trailer trucks trying to make that Middle Road U-turn is beyond belief. It can’t be that difficult to – at least – prohibit trucks from that move. The Route 85 overpass is so close and so much safer.

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