Tech firm Jabra moving to Crosspoint – Crosspoint Improvements

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Some positive Economic Development News for Lowell, according to the Boston Business Journal Tech firm Jabra will relocate North American HQ to Lowell

Denmark-based wireless headphone and speaker maker Jabra will relocate its North American headquarters from Nashua, N.H. to Lowell next year. The company is relocating more than 90 employees to a 32,000-square-foot office at the redesigned Cross Point office complex in Lowell in April 2015. The company has 875 employees worldwide, according to Jabra’s website.

The article also sites how the new owners of Crosspoint are investing in improvements to the facility.

Anchor Line Partners and Farallon Capital Management acquired Cross Point for $100 million in June from San Francisco-based DivcoWest and began significant renovations in August. Once complete, the Cross Point campus will feature on-site amenities such as innovative meeting spaces, a new fitness center with yoga studio and an open recreational space for activities including a renovated cafeteria, planned full-service restaurant, bike storage and new on-site day care.

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Shop, Eat or Enjoy a show in Downtown Lowell -free parking this weekend.

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If you need to run into Edible Arrangements, pick up Gift Certificates at the Athenian, Wicked Irish or Cobblestones or just want to enjoy a night out, the City Administration wants to remind you of the free parking opportunities this weekend:

This weekend is scheduled to be a “free” weekend in the Downtown garages. Starting at 4:00 pm, the exit gates will be lifted at the Early Garage, the Joseph Downes Garage, and the Leo Roy Garage. Customers are asked to pull a ticket at each garage in order to enter and will be granted free exit until Monday morning.

At the Leo Roy Garage after 8:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, a Customer Service Representative will be available to assist all customers. Gates will be lowered on Monday morning.

Event parking will not be charged on Father Morissette Boulevard, Cabot Street, Hall Street or Suffolk Street for the Mixed Martial Arts event at the Tsongas Center on Friday evening.

Please adhere to the Residential Permit restriction on Perkins Street. Normal event rates will be charged at the Ayotte Garage and the Jeanne D’ Arc Lot. Standard operations and rates will be in effect for the Ayotte and Lower Locks Garage as well as on-street meters.

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Buy some fine Wine and help the Sun Santa Fund

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Last Saturday Sun Editor aka the Wine Novice Blogger, Jim Campanini helped the WCAP Radiothon by donating Autographed Bottles of wine which when auctioned resulted in $6,000 for the Salvation Army.

You can now bid on two more signed bottles and help the Sun Santa Fund.

Jim is donating a Silver Oak bottle signed by incoming Gov.Charlie Baker, Lt. Gov.Karyn Polito and another Mossback magnum signed by the Lowell City Council.

If interested, send your name and bid to Chris Tierney at ctierney@lowellsun.com or call him at 978-970-4699. The bidding closes on Friday night at 5 p.m. and the winners will be announced on The Sun’s Facebook page.

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Your Property Taxes are going up! How high depends on New Evaluations

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Tonight during the City Council Meeting, the Council has to “Officially” set the Tax Rate.

Guestesimated bills have been issued but they will be adjusted so the real (aka higher) bills go out in the last 2 quarters.

The motion on the Council Agenda reads: Vote – Adopting the Minimum Residential Factor for Fiscal Year 2015. It is accompanied by this letter from Susan Lemay the Chief Assessor.

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If I understand things correctly in making the recommendation that the shift stays with the businesses, she cites that the commercial/industrial valuation hasn’t changed much, but the single family and multi-unit residential home values have increased moderately.

That would mean that even without a tax rate increase if they decide your home is worth more today than last year than you will see a monetary increase on your home.

Adding in a tax rate increase will further increase the residential tax bills.

So while we hear over and over and over again about the need to attract business, the Council is smart enough to know that businesses don’t vote so by shifting the already higher rate Commercial Property Owners pay, by property values increasing, they can keep the tax rate lower than the 3.5% increase that was forecasted.

It would not be surprising that even these Councilors who talk and talk and talk about how vital economic development is realize that getting voters/taxpayers to re-elect them is even more important.

By taking this vote they may have a chance to say when running next year, that we only had to raise taxes 2.5% or 3% not the full 3.5% we expected.

Right now Lowell’s Residential Tax Rate is $15.14 and Commercial is $31.75.

What will they be if the council accepts the Assessors recommendation tonight and/ or where should it be to meet the approved June fiscal budget?

I asked the Manager that question but he stated he would address that tonight at the Council meeting , so to find out please watch (If I have to, you should too) and see if REAl Actual Numbers are provided or if they just talk % and vague numbers.

The people deserve to know EXACTLY what the tax rate is going to be, either maintaining the $15.14 posted on the City Website or what the increase will mean and they should be told tonight.

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Sunday Notes December 14th 2014

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A Hundred Thousand THANK YOU’s to everyone who donated any amount, auction item or helped us reach the goal in yesterday’s 980 WCAP Radiothon.

The work done by Sue Plunkett, Lynda Clarke, Tom Bomil, Shawn Ashe and the rest of the Executive Board in coordinating this event is amazing. Fred Simon and State Rep Tom Golden put in so many hours making so many phone calls to line-up items and donations and Sam Poulten and WCAP who turn over the station for 8 hours plus offer many auction items shows the importance and value of local radio.

The cooperation and support from the Lowell Sun and Editor Jim Campanni, Ken Wallace and the publisher in donating space for the Auction add and donations like the Column and autographed bottles and the stories by Dan Phelps and Chris Scott promoting the event is appreciated and again, highlights how beneficial a local newspaper is to the Community.

A Special THANK YOU to the Lowell Firefighters and to ALL OF YOU who donated over $7,000 between 10:00 am – Noon yesterday when they worked the intersections in a massive boot drive.

Finally, a big Thank YOU to Warren Shaw for being the ringleader. For months after month and weeks after weeks of coordinating meetings, endless hours of phone calls getting contributions and for 8 hours of keeping everyone focused on the goal. If you’ve done radio or TV you know filling 1-2 or 4 hours is hard enough, keeping things moving and focused for 8 hours and for many years hitting $100,000 to help the Salvation Army is nothing short of spectacular and even his toughest critics should realize the work, energy and time he gives.

The never ending Lawsuit between the city and the former Library worker is still ongoing and there is still a lot of buzz being generated because of it. It was suggested I keep my eye on things because:

“the city is officially in default on several issues in the case of the library asst. termination. Several defendants have failed to file the appropriate paperwork needed by Nov. 24th and the judge may have returned paperwork the city did submit.”

Not surprisingly that isn’t the reality of the situation. It seems the City filed a dismissal motion and while that is under advisement, usually the original case and dates for paperwork are placed on hold, it appears a clerical error resulted in the default notification (according to a well respected Lawyer I spoke with, this happens more than people realize). Be assured this case isn’t over but also that the City is in good legal standings and not in any default nor did they miss any deadlines.

I think City Hall looks great and so I have no sympathy for complainers who don’t like this Manager or Administration and are sayings things like: Dept. Heads were “forced” to stay for the open house and that the City spent $2,000 on Poinsettia.

To bad! The new Administration wanted City Hall to be festive and welcoming and I think it does. Kudos also to the Council for not getting upset about the elf pictures. It shows they can laugh at themselves. Loved one Facebook post that stated: I didn’t realize Milinazzo had a sense of humor!

Don’t you love how quickly people (especially the Democrats) have such short memories? State Rep. Dave Nangle was a HUGE supporter of Democratic Gov. candidate Steve Grossman and Democrat Attorney General-elect Maura Healey campaigning with BOTH of them in Lowell. Yet because he had the good sense to support Charlie Baker (WINNER) he’s still getting grief. Maybe if MORE elected politicians would work with instead of against each other this country would be in better shape and we would not have the ugly political climate in Washington.

Funny how a Senator whose personal net worth is $14 Million shells tee-shirts for a campaign donation that say “Best Senator Money can’t buy”…what a total FRAUD! Real man of the people isn’t she.

Here’s an interesting fact found in the School Committee Agenda this week: If a petition to Home School is granted, the number of families approved by the Lowell School Committee to home school will total 31 and the total number of children will be 45.

The Sun has a story in today’s paper that sums up the Supt. search pretty well when it in parts states: The city’s next school superintendent will face an array of challenges, from contracts to a middle-school space crunch to a potential new or renovated high school.

But the School Committee, which will select the school chief, will have a challenge of its own: How to find the right person amid a possibly small field of candidates.

With the way this School Committee has treated this and the last Superintendent, my guess is a small and inexperienced amount of applicants that haven’t managed a School District this large. They have only themselves to blame.

Not surprising the Council has will canceled the final two meetings of the Month – Vote – Cancel Council Meeting of December 23 and 30, 2014.

I understand the need for Security and the importance of gathering information and that maybe if we had this program in place, the Idiot at the Bailey School may not have shown, up but doesn’t this have an air of BIG Brother Watching?

C. Rourke – Req. City Mgr. have LPD explore feasibility and possible use of Social Sentinel Software as a social media monitoring tool.

Here are the full list of Motions for this final 2014 Lowell City Council Meeting:

10.1. C. Martin – Req. City Mgr. have proper department make presentation to Transportation SC about
planned improvements for Lord Overpass.

10.2. C. Martin – Req. City Mgr. report on efforts undertaken or underway to address the collapsed wall at
Prospect/Crosby Streets.

10.3. C. Rourke – Req. City Mgr. have LPD explore feasibility and possible use of Social Sentinel Software as a
social media monitoring tool.

10.4. M. Elliott – Req. City Mgr. explore the feasibility of establishing a Veterans Commission.

10.5. M. Elliott – Req. City Mgr./Mayor appoint Steering Committee of Cambodian activists to work with City
officials for development of monument for Cambodian immigrants.

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Don’t miss the 980 WCAP Radiothon for the Salvation Army

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It’s almost here! PLEASE, join us tomorrow from 6:00 am – 2:00 pm (Longer if needed) for our Annual 980 WCAP Radiothon to benefit the Lowell Salvation Army. Call in a pledge at 978 454 4980 on air,or call in off air at 978 454 0404.

Come down to our PARTY at Cappy’s Copper Kettle where you will listen to music from One Flight Up, Gentleman Songsters, and Vintage Party. Get a caricature done by local legend Bill Bradbury , Buy an autographed copy of LEGENDARY LOCALS OF DRACUT by Dracut Award Winning Teacher Rebecca A. Duda, with a Foreword by the former leader of the Lowell Salvation Army, Major Everett Henry.

Or meet Boston Herald Columnist / Radio talk show host Howie Carr who will sign copies of his books for a donation to the Salvation Army. Meet and get some Poker tips from World Class Poker player Lowell native Billy Pappas , congratulate and meet and greet Incoming Gov Charlie Baker and Lt Gov Karen Polito and of course The Champ, Lowell’s own Mickey Ward will join us around Noon.

If you can’t make it to Cappy’s look for our friends the Lowell Firefighters who will be holding a boot drive all over the city at various intersections from 10:00 am – Noon to benefit the Radiothon and Salvation Army.

List to 980 WCAP in your house, car, on Tune IN on your phone or IPAD, or streaming on-line, catch us on LTC and hear all of the people I mentioned above along with local State, City and Town Officials and your neighbors who will be stopping by with donations.

Don’t forget to bid on any of the spectacular gifts we have each hour or the SUPER gifts we Auction all day long. Call in to bid at 978 454 4980 on air, 978 454 0404 off air.

It’s the 980 WCAP 2014 Radiation hosted by Warren Shaw and a cast of hundreds to benefit the Lowell Salvation Army .

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Shop with us on 980 WCAP and help the Salvation Army

Download or open this PDF for a clearer view: Christmas Goods List

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