WAKEFIELD – Town Meeting passed a Capital Outlay budget of $2,239,875 Monday, May 15 in the Galvin Middle School auditorium. Warrant Article 2 also included a transfer of $667,000 from the Water Retained Earnings Account to the Water Department Capital Outlay Account and a transfer of $447,000 from the Sewer Retained Earnings Account to the Sewer Department Capital Outlay Account.

The  $2,239,875 includes $300,000 for monument restoration the Upper Common; $240,000 for playground work at the Dolbeare School, including a rubber surface; $230,000 for a chiller replacement at the Woodville School; $212,500 for three new police cars; $130,000 for roof work at the Beebe Library; $80,000 for a sand plow; $70,000 for brick repointing at the Civic Center; $70,000 for roof work at Town Hall and smaller but still important items like $25,000 for windows at Town Hall; $20,000 for water bubblers in town and $14,000 for lockers for firefighters at the Greenwood Fire Department. “The roofs we felt we need right away,” Capital Outlay Committee chair Franklin Leone told the 97 people attending Town Meeting.

He also said having adequate lockers for the firefighters was important.

The $667,000 for capital outlays for the Water Department includes $500,000 for water mains and $100,000 for other system improvements.

The $447,000 for capital outlays for the Sewer Department includes $130,000 for a vac truck

and $70,000 for a pump rebuild on Farm Street.

All articles at Town Meeting this spring were approved, most of them unanimously.

Articles 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, and 12 were combined in a Consent Agenda. “We’ve been trying this for the last several meetings on issues no one speaks about,” Moderator William Carroll explained. “They come up every year.”

Procedurally a vote had to be taken to group the articles followed by a vote on passing them.

Article 3 was Debt Service of $4,337,400 for capital projects; 4 was $960,015 for payment in lieu of taxes from the Municipal Gas and Light Department; 5 was use of Free Cash, specifically $175,000 for the Fire Department to cover overtime, fuel and unexpected repairs and $100,000 for the Police Department for overtime and fuel; 6 was for $65,000 from Free Cash for Indemnification of Injuries by police and fire personnel; 7 was for $1 to allow the Town Council to take easements for minor projects by eminent domain; 9 was for $25,000 from Free Cash for participation in the UMass Medicaid Reimbursement Program;  and 10, 11 and 12 were to table police and fire union contracts that have not been settled.

Article 8 was for $2,370,747 for collection, disposal, recycling and composting of refuse.

Article 13 was to allow the town to receive and spend a grant of $1,310,000 from the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority.

Article 14 was to establish an Affordable Housing Trust Fund. “Every now and then we have an article which is truly exciting,” Town Administrator Steve Maio said. “This year it’s 14 for the benefit of low and moderate income households. It will allow us to participate in the development of affordable housing, include affordable units in new projects and support rental assistance.”

The article also outlines membership of a Board of Trustees including members of the Housing Authority, Town Council, Planning Board, Council on Aging, Finance Committee and Commission on Disabilities and members of the community at large.

Town Council chair Jonathan Chines called establishment of an Affordable Housing Trust Fund and Board of Trustees “a positive step.”

Articles 15, 16, 17 and 18 were to amend language in the General Bylaws. “The goal was to simplify the bylaws and eliminate unnecessary language to make them clearer so someone reading the bylaws will understand them,” Bylaw Review Committee chair Daniel Lieber explained. “It’s to make them more understandable for those of us who aren’t lawyers.”

Article 19 was a request to institute a bylaw to cover the issue of changing street names. “The goal was to make sure there was a process,” Planning Board member William Spaulding explained. The new bylaw includes provisions for notifying area residents and prohibits changes to street names that had been initially named or subject of a name change in the last 25 years, names honoring a living person or business entity and names so similar to other street names as to cause confusion.