Amazon brings trucks, but also potential support to Northborough businesses

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NorthboroughBy Liz Nolan, Contributing Writer

Northborough – The Northborough Board of Selectmen met on Feb. 8. Vaccinations, Amazon, and the state’s draft of the Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2030 highlighted the agenda.

Amazon can bring benefits to the town

Residents in the Bartlett Street area have been advocating to keep their neighborhood free of increased truck traffic for months. Industrial facilities have agreed to encourage their drivers to use alternate routes to the highways. Amazon and Federal Express have signage up.

As requested by residents and supported by Selectmen Julianne Hirsh, an Amazon representative will attend the next Board meeting on Monday, Feb. 22.

Selectmen Tim Kaelin wants residents to consider the benefits the Amazon facility will bring–new jobs and 600 plus employees to support Northborough businesses.

“Obviously traffic is a concern; we need to continue to monitor that,” he said. “It is up to us and the Master Plan Implementation Committee to be creative and extract as much value as we can out of the Amazon facility being in our town so that value can be spread across the community.”

Vaccinations continue as priority

Northborough Health Agent Kristin Black is looking at all avenues to secure vaccines for residents.

The first clinic on Feb. 5 was a huge success. The town is prepared to vaccine 600 people each week if the state can increase the vaccine supply. A second clinic will be held on Friday, Feb. 12.

“We have a long way to go in vaccinating our community,” said Black. “Our 100 doses obviously is not going to get us through seniors…as quickly as we want.”

The Northborough Senior Center is assisting with appointment making at other available sites, such as Hopkinton, as well as in Northborough. They can be reached at 508-393-5035.

Clean Energy and Climate Plan Draft

The state has asked for comment on its draft of the Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2030. The plan is a guide for the state to reach 2030 emission goals.

Northborough will consider signing off on comments and recommendations shared by representatives from Westborough and Natick as a multi-town collective effort. The Board will continue to review the draft and further discuss how the town will comment before the March 22 deadline.

Assistant Town Administrator Becca Meekins does not recommend the town to sign off on the recommendation asking that all Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) funded projects be net zero in 2022.

“It’s the technology we are moving towards to get away from fossil fuels and natural gas,” Meekins said. “It’s new to the market and there’s not a lot of contractors with a lot of experience.”

“We are on board and we all want to get to work on the same goal but we want do to it through incentives, through assistance and a logical plan,” said Coderre.