Tuesday, April 19, 2011


Handicapped Placard Application Processing

Well in advance of my leaving the hospital after my recent illness, which included a high amputation of my left leg, we made arrangements to have the medical staff sign the required documents for me to apply for a handicapped placard to make parking more accessible when we were home from the hospital. My wife brought the signed application to the Mass RMV office at the Liberty Tree Mall where she was advised that the application was now processed at a Quincy RMV location, and that they would forward the application to that office and we would receive a placard in three weeks time. After waiting for five weeks and having several difficult experiences having to park a long way from an intended location, and since five weeks had passed since we were advised that our application would be processed in three weeks, we decided to try to contact the RMV to learn of our status. I tried calling and never was able to make a contact with a live person, as I was put on hold for what seemed like a longer than normal wait time. After disconnecting the phone, I considered an e-mail contact, but I found the RMV web site difficult to navigate with a lot of advertising clutter on the web site. I abandoned that idea as well and decided to seek help from my local State Representative. I called Representative Ted Speliotis and his office responded immediately. I was connected to Representative Speliotis Legislative Assistant Bill Bates who immediately took control of my issue, which included a visit to my home to pick up a copy of my application to the RMV. Bill made contact with the proper people at RMV and in a matter of days my credentials were in my hand. I am particularly indebted to Representative Speliotis and Bill Bates, who also serves on our local Danvers School Committee, for their prompt and efficient service, We are pleased that the RMV was able to accommodate my request. My case should not have been a difficult one to process as my medical condition with an amputated leg should have been easy to process. It would seem to me that handicapped placard processing should take some priority at the RMV, and be processed promptly as those credentials can be critical to someone with a disability and could make their entering back into the world on non handicapped individuals that much more seamless. Thanks again to Representative Speliotis and Bill Bates for their attention to my request.

Quality of Life Survey

Essex Heritage is pleased that our partner, Salem State University has organized phase 2 of the Quality of Life Survey that they agreed to implement for the benefit of Essex Heritage. The survey is anonymous and we would certainly appreciate it if you would consider providing us with your opinions. The survey can be found by accessing the joint quality of life survey at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/qualityoflife2 thanks

Essex Heritage Hero Awards Dinner

Plans are shaping up for our 2011 Heritage Hero Award Dinner - an event you do not want to miss! Join us as we celebrate the achievements of our inspiring 2011 Essex Heritage Heroes: Dr. Wayne Burton, Mayor Kimberley Driscoll and Mr. Wayne Marquis. Brian Cranney will serve as Master of Ceremonies for this fun-filled evening. 

All proceeds will benefit Essex Heritage programs that preserve and promote the historical, cultural, and natural resources in the 34 cities and towns of Essex County. Tickets are now available online! There is still time to sponsor! The advertising deadline is April 22! Find out more about sponsorship opportunities here (pdf).

Thanks to our Presenting Sponsor: Danversbank; Banner Sponsors: Eastern Bank, Salem Five, and Saugusbank; Lead Sponsor: North Shore Community College, as well as our table sponsors: The Hawthorne Hotel, Hunts Photo & Video, Peabody Essex Museum and The Provident Bank.

Superintendent Trap Recognized!

Patricia Trap, Superintendent of the Salem Maritime and Saugus Iron Works National Historic Sites, was selected as the 2011 Northeast Region's Superintendent of the Year for Natural Resource Stewardship. Her role in integrating natural resource stewardship and science into the planning and operations of Salem Maritime National Historic Site and Saugus Iron Works National Historic Site reflects her ability to include others in efforts to protect park resources, and her talent for instilling a shared vision amongst her National Park Service staff. Her leadership was instrumental in the Saugus Iron Works Turning Basin waterfront and tidal marsh restoration project, which was completed in 2010.

Danvers council on Aging Reception for Volunteers

On Sunday morning, April 17, 2011, the management of the DCOA hosted a reception at the Senior Center for volunteers who have provided service throughout the last year. The event billed as a Champagne Jazz Brunch was a wonderful success and was very well attended as over 140 seniors were in attendance. The food was wonderful, the entertainment was pleasant and the conversations interesting. Thank you to the Town for their thoughtfulness that will likely be rewarded by another year of committed volunteerism that will help keep the Danvers Senior Center, one of the most vibrant and active centers in the region. The level of volunteerism is high in the Town of Danvers, and the recognition of that commitment is part of the reason why support is so high.


It is too early to speak in detail about an event that is being planned by the St. Richard’s Church Parish Council. We do want those folks, who attend that church, to save the date of December 11, 2011 for a special one of a kind event that is being planned to help celebrate the Year of the Family. More information will follow in the future.

More Good News for County Seaport Communities

Last week, the Seaport Advisory Council chaired by Lt. Governor Murray met in Gloucester to consider applications from four coastal communities and the four applications were all approved. The city of Newburyport received $1.98 million in funding to complete repairs to the seawall that is such an important feature of the waterfront. Salem received a grant of $632, 654 that will help complete the new pier that will continue to be the location of the Salem ferry, will also receive cruise ships and will host fishing vessels. Gloucester received a grant of $700,000 to help complete the 1.2-mile harbor walk along the City’s working waterfront. The round of grants were completed with a $1.39 million to improve infrastructure on the waterfront project east of the Veterans Bridge. The periodic grants that this year totaled $4.7 million has been a boon to the economy of this region. The region is indebted to the state for this economic stimulus.

Big Sports day in Boston

A world-class marathon with record breaking times, the Red Sox starting to find their way, and the Bruins possibly getting back into the series.

Tax Day in MA

Today is the final day to pay state taxes in Massachusetts. In light of that fact, I saw an interesting story yesterday that so clearly points out the need for tax reform legislation. The story noted that the top 400 earners in this country are now only paying a average of 17% on their earnings rather than an average of 36% paid a couple of decades ago. The story also pointed out that at this time nearly half of all us citizens pay no taxes at all.

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