By Keith Regan, Contributing Writer
Westborough—The Board of Selectmen April 26 voted to pass on the town’s option to purchase a small parcel of land being taken out of the 61A agricultural tax exemption program, but also made plans to revisit how they review such options in the future.
The board voted unanimously not to exercise the town’s right to buy a 2,500-square-foot parcel off Spring Road that the owner plans to lease to Verizon for a cellular tower. The rest of the 24-acre parcel—located adjacent to the Massachusetts Turnpike – will remain protected, Town Manager Jim Malloy said.
Before the vote, selectmen heard from two members of the town’s Open Space Committee, who said they were not aware the option was being offered to the town. Other boards, including the Planning Board and Board of Assessors, must be consulted under state law before the option is disposed.
“We don’t have these often, but I have heard rumblings that there are other properties under 61A that are in various states of potentially coming up before us,” said Chair Ian Johnson. The board plans to discuss its process going forward at its next meeting in May.
In other business, selectmen approved a liquor license change for Bertucci’s Restaurant on Route 9 that will allow the construction of a full bar and create outdoor patio seating. Officials from the restaurant said patrons want a restaurant with a full-service bar. The number of seats at the restaurant will remain unchanged, with the 15 seats lost by building a bar replaced in an outdoor seating area.
The board also approved a site plan for a 1-megawatt solar project installation on unused properties at the town’s wastewater treatment plant. The 3,000-panel array will provide about one-fourth of the power the plant uses annually.