Power Outage Caused by Tree Growth

power poleThe power outage in Hamilton on Monday night was caused by a feeder lock out at National Grid’s east Beverly substation.

In all, about 4,500 customers were affected, according to a community manager at National Grid. Town officials received several inquiries about the cause of the outage.

Tree growth into primary lines on Foster Street in Beverly was the culprit and many customers got their power back pretty quickly by switching to another source. The remaining electric customers were restored once the tree growth was removed by National Grid’s forestry group, according to the company.

Recreational Marijuana Ban to Go Before Planning Board Tuesday Night

Foliage Nature Lush Plants Cannabis MarijuanaA proposed town bylaw that would ban the sale or distribution of recreational marijuana in Hamilton will go before the Planning Board for the first time on Tuesday night.

If later approved by Town Meeting voters, it would mean that a marijuana cultivator, marijuana testing facility, marijuana product manufacturer, marijuana retailer or any other type of marijuana-related business would not be allowed in Hamilton.

The proposed bylaw would not apply to medical marijuana facilities. It has been reviewed by Town Counsel Donna Brewer.

If the proposal moves forward, the Planning Board will hold a public hearing and then later vote on whether to support the bylaw change or not. It would then go to Town Meeting, where it would take a two-third vote to approve.

“We would be effectively zoning it out of the community to the extent that zoning can control such things,” said Planning Director Patrick Reffett.

Police Chief Russell Stevens is scheduled to appear before the Planning Board to discuss the proposed bylaw. The meeting starts at 7 p.m. in the Memorial Room at Town Hall on Tuesday, July 25.

Driver Alert: Weekend Road Closures Planned at Railroad Crossings

IMG_20170719_120517The two railroad crossings in downtown Hamilton will be separately closed to vehicles during the next two weekends for track work.

During the closures, the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority will repair and replace the train tracks at the crossings.

The work will start at the Asbury Street crossing near Bay Road, which will be closed to vehicles at 9 p.m. on Friday, July 21. The closure will continue through Saturday, July 22 at 9 p.m.

The work will then shift to the crossing at Bay and Walnut roads the following weekend. Work will start at 9 p.m. on Friday, July 28 and will continue through Saturday, July 29 and is scheduled to be complete by 9 p.m.

The work is required in order to maintain the safe travel of trains and pedestrians through the area and to re-establish full service as soon as possible, according to the T.

Each street will be closed in both directions at the railroad crossings in order to complete the work, but access to all businesses will be maintained during the work. The municipal parking lot on Asbury Street will also be accessible from the Bay Road end of Asbury Street.

Hamilton police officers will be posted throughout the detour to assist with traffic flow and message boards have been put up to alert commuters.

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Hamilton Senior Honored at Fenway, Forgoes Red Sox-Yankees Event at Senior Center

fenway veteransA Vietnam War veteran from Hamilton was among 1,300 veterans recently recognized at a Red Sox game at Fenway Park.

Thomas Hever, former chairman of the Hamilton Council on Aging, was one of 1,300 veterans recognized before the Yankee-Red Sox game on Saturday, July 15.

He was invited to attend in the spring and decided to bring his daughter. Red Sox officials said it was the largest recognition ceremony of its’ kind ever held in the United States.

Gov. Charlie Baker joined veterans at the ceremony, which included a flyover by four F-15 fighter jets and the display of a display outside Fenway Park of a half-size replica of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, DC.

Fans at the game were asked to stand and hold up placards that said “I salute” to recognize loved ones who are veterans.

After getting the invitation to Fenway Park, Hever had to cancel a Red Sox-Yankees game get-together at the Hamilton Senior Center, according to Hamilton Council on Aging Director Mary Beth Lawton.

“I know he wanted to be at the Senior Center hosting our seniors, cooking hot dogs and making hot fudge sundaes for this game, but getting that call from the Red Sox was a once-in-a-lifetime event,” Lawton said, adding that the COA is proud of his service to the United States.

Four Straight Weeks of Replacement Shuttle Bus Service Starts for Commuter Rail on Saturday

IMG_20170714_145451A four week long complete shutdown of MBTA commuter rail service to Hamilton-Wenham station starts on Saturday, July 15.

There will be replacement shuttle bus service for every day that the train isn’t running and the T has set up temporary shuttle bus stops along Route 1A (Bay Road) near the intersection of Railroad Avenue.

During weekdays, train service north of Salem station will be halted until Aug. 13 for work on the Beverly drawbridge across the Danvers River.

The weekday shuttle bus service will be free. A zone 3 monthly pass will be accepted at all stations north of Salem for the months of July and August. The shuttle buses will be ADA accessible with Wi-Fi service and restrooms. Bicycles, including folding bikes, will be prohibited on all shuttle buses.

Parking will be free at Hamilton-Wenham station during the weekday shutdown. Commuter rail riders are encouraged to not drive to Salem station and park because parking there is very constrained. Parking regulations will be strictly enforced in downtown Salem and neighborhood areas to the station, according to the T.

The weekday shutdown for commuter rail service north of Salem is scheduled to run from Monday, July 17 through Sunday, Aug. 13.

Separate from the drawbridge work that will shut down train service north of Salem, weekend replacement shuttle bus service will last into September for the entire length of the Newburyport train line. The weekend shut down is for a safety improvement project.

The closure will allow the MBTA to install a federally mandated Positive Train Control (PTC) system along the tracks. PTC will improve safety by reducing train collisions and derailments.

A shuttle bus will stop at Hamilton-Wenham station on weekends until Sunday, Sept. 30. Just as is the case during the weekday shutdown, the weekend replacement shuttle bus service is ADA accessible with Wi-Fi service and restrooms.

The special weekend fare for the shuttle bus service is $10 roundtrip to North Station in Boston. Zone 3 or higher monthly passes will also be accepted and parking will be free at Hamilton-Wenham station during the weekend shutdown.

Detailed shuttle bus times and schedules are available on the MBTA website.

Town in Search of T Representative

mbta symbolThe town of Hamilton is in search of a liaison to the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.

The volunteer position acts as a general liaison to the MBTA and attends the control board meetings as one part of the job, according to Town Manager Michael Lombardo.

“It’s an important position because it keeps an ear to the ground, so to speak, having someone attend the meetings and be able to keep track of what is going on and how it may affect the town,” Lombardo said.

It is especially important now, he said, because of a proposal to install two 70-foot monopoles along the railroad tracks in Hamilton as part of a project to put in new wifi service for train passengers.

While Hamilton needs someone to fill the MBTA liaison role to represent the town’s interests, in general, it is also important to have the position filled as the MBTA rethinks the monopole project.

Anyone interested in the position is encouraged to contact Lombardo directly at mlombardo@hamiltonma.gov to get more information or also contact any member of the Board of Selectmen.

Patton Homestead to Host Military History Day

military history day Wenham Museum’s Military History Day is happening this weekend at the Patton Homestead and Archives, which is owned by the town of Hamilton.

The event is free and open to all. It will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., rain or shine, at the Patton Homestead, owned and operated by the town of Hamilton at 650 Asbury St. It is the former home of Gen. George S. Patton and Major Gen. George S. Patton III.

The event will include a running 1943 M4A Sherman tank, a black hawk helicopter, military re-enactments, equipment displays and demonstrations of military vehicles including half-tracks, heavy trucks, artillery, support equipment and memorabilia.

There will be food from Kim’s Pure Pastry, Fancy’s Snoballs and Joe’s on a Roll.

There will also be tours of the Patton Family Archive for $10. Tours will be first come, first serve, and signups will be taken online.