Police officer promoted and new officer sworn in
Six-year police department veteran Karen Catlow was promoted to sergeant and probationary offi- cer Scott Sullivan was sworn in at a ceremony preceding Monday's Town Council meeting.
According to Police Chief Thomas Tighe, Catlow assured her promotion by scoring highest on the sergeant's exam last month. The chief praised Catlow for her accomplishments since she has been with the department and made particular mention of "her exemplary performance as the school liaison officer."
Catlow's parents attended the ceremony and her husband Greg, an officer with the Smithfield Police Department, pinned on her new sergeant's badge.
Scott Sullivan, a new officer with the department was sworn in by Town Council President Julio DiGiando, and Sullivan's brother, a lieutenant with the Portsmouth Police Department, pinned on his badge. Sullivan recently graduated from the Rhode Island Police Academy near the top of his class and is now engaged in field training with the department.
Dutch Harbor Boat Yard
The Town Council reviewed a letter from Dutch Harbor Boat Yard Attorney Mark E. Liberati requesting the council's consent to extend the lease for an additional ten years under the same terms and in the same rental amount as currently exists. The letter also asked for an option for an additional ten years at the base rental amount, plus an increase calculated using the Consumer Price Index.
Town Administrator Bruce Keiser said he would work with Town Solicitor Peter Ruggiero to draft appropriate proposals and response to the request. Councilman Michael White suggested that Keiser take the lead as Town Council liaison to handle the matter. The council agreed with White's suggestion.
Clancy Designs update
Councilman Robert Sutton asked the council to update David and Jennifer Clancy's appeal to the Rhode Island Superior Court for a reversal of a zoning board decision to prevent the glass blowing studio on North Main Road from engaging in retail sales.
Solicitor Ruggiero said he looked into the matter and reported that the Superior Court was short one judge and the court calendar was full. He said that the judge would address the case when he had time, but would not commit to a date.
The Town Council voted unanimously in January to support Clancy's effort to reverse the zoning board decision, but its support carries no legal weight. The zoning board was divided on the matter and the motion to grant the Clancy's request failed with a vote of 3-2. The zoning board requires a 4-1 vote to pass.
Nonetheless, the Clancy's felt that a unanimous show of support from the Town Council and a majority vote from the zoning board would carry enough weight to sway the judge's decision when he had the opportunity to review the case. David Clancy said that he saw the brief that former town solicitor Lauriston Parks sent to the judge and it did not contain any documents showing support of their case.
Ruggerio said that he had no idea what was in the brief, but that it was not Park's responsibility to include evidence of supporting documents. He suggested that Clancy could make the documents available to the judge in many other ways, one being through his own attorney.
Sutton suggested making the matter an agenda item so the council could again vote on the matter to possibly make a show of continued support.
A request from John G. Plowden to re-establish the Jamestown Golf Course Advisory Committee was met with opposition from the council. Council President Julio DiGiando said that the Town Administrator and golf course management could handle any problems that might arise.
Councilman Robert Sutton said, "We don't need an oversight committee to manage a private business that as far as I can see is well-run. I'm not aware of any problems that require the services of another committee." The other councilmen agreed with DiGiando and Sutton.
Bike path design committee At a meeting with the state Department of Transportation (DOT) attended by the town administrator, Town Planner Lisa Bryer, and Councilmen Michael White and Robert Sutton, it was decided that the town would establish a Bike Path Committee.
The committee would develop a plan for the bike path from the Jamestown Bridge to Arnold Avenue where it would connect with the bike path being developed by Rolling Agenda. The design plan would provide a blueprint for moving the bike path planning from the concept stage to awarding a bid for engineering design and cost estimation.
DiGiando suggested that Sutton chair the committee. Sutton accepted the assignment and the council unanimously agreed.