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This report was presented by Essex Town Administrator Brendhan Zubricki at this week’s Board of Selectmen meeting on June 29,and it covers topics of interest for town business from June 13 to June 26.

On Sunday, Chebacco Lake Beach felt like it was a million miles away from any anxieties that life may be throwing our way.  The weather was perfectly temperate, the sun way out, the beach was not crowded, and the assuring noise of kids cries of fun and play was in the air, along with e splas…

Downtown Essex is getting into the rhythm of restauranting, and firing on all cylinders—indoor dining, outdoor dining, and “take out dining.”  The eateries that set up additional outdoor seating allowed by the state started doing so three weeks ago (like Woodman’s and Shea’s seen here, or CK…

The suggestion for the headline for Monday’s outdoor Town Meeting, from reader Bill Coale was, “Annual Town Meeting Held In A Cool, Comfortable Fog” and that felt just about right to the 214 Manchester voters who showed up to easily pass the 14 articles on the Warrant.  They funded a town op…

The newly invigorated national discussion on the role of police and the promotion of equitable treatment for all regardless of their skin color has important lessons for every community, large or small.  I am a firm believer in the value of reflection and civil discourse to ensure all our public institutions and services are truly the best that they can be.  Understandably, the current focus is on police departments, but many other segments of public life could benefit from examination.

At Monday’s Town Meeting, BOS Chairman Eli Boling said no one serving on any town board could have anticipated the year’s “agenda” would end up managing the community’s response to a global pandemic.  Anyone volunteering for town service, he said, indeed deserves credit for leading the town through the events so far in 2019.  This is especially true for two BOS members, Margaret “Muffin” Driscoll and Arthur Steinert, both retiring to a well-deserved rest.  Steinert has served for three years.

The Board of Selectmen would like to thank all residents who attended and participated in the Annual Town Meeting on Monday, June 22. All articles on the warrant were approved by a majority vote.

When non-essential businesses had to close on March 28 under orders by Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, many wondered how health clubs would emerge and embrace the constraints of social distancing.  Well, we’re getting an idea of what that might look like when the Manchester Athletic Club kicked off its staged opening to the public, starting with its renowned tennis program, appointment training and group fitness under outdoor tents and the outdoor pool.  How did they do it?  A great team.

Tuesday, a “Retirement Parade” consisting of over 130 cars accompanied by Essex fire engines, MBTS police and Essex police surprised Sue Hardy and Jeannine Stanley at the Essex Elementary School with a show of love and respect for the many years they put into their careers.  To thank the community for this show of love and respect, Hardy and Stanley have written a letter to be included in this week’s Cricket.

On March 10, Governor Charles D. Baker declared a state of emergency in the Commonwealth due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).  Pursuant to my authority contained in M.G.L. Ch. 39, §§ 15 and 17 to regulate the proceeding and preserve order at town meeting, I adopt this Public Health Protocol for the Annual Town Meeting to be held on June 22 at 6:30 p.m. with check-in open at 5:30 and a rain date of June 24.

Essex held its Spring Town Meeting last week at Essex Elementary School, with 177 residents weighing in a whopping a 37-article warrant.  In the end, residents successfully voted to formalize Essex as a “one cannabis retailer” town and postponed a vote to establish a new downtown zoning district to a later time.  They also voted to widen the number of senior citizens eligible for real estate tax relief.  It all felt like “business as usual.”

Finally, it is here!  Our Annual Town Meeting, delayed from the usual early April date, will be held on Monday, 6/22, at 6:30PM (check in begins at 5:30) on the turf field at the high school (rain date is 6/24).  Moderator Alan Wilson and Town Clerk Christina St. Pierre, with thoughtful guidance from our Board of Health and state guidelines, have spent considerable time mapping out a safe, detailed set of procedures and layout for the meeting (see related article). 

Two weeks ago, approximately 150 people participated in a spontaneous vigil at Masconomo Park in Manchester to honor George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement.  Last week, three more such events took place in Manchester, including this one organized by MERHS freshman Bella Wright and …

Monday, June 22 at 6:30 p.m. on the Manchester Essex Middle High School athletic field.  Rain date will be Wednesday, June 24 at 6:30 p.m.  Proper social distancing measures will be in place to ensure the safety of all residents in attendance.  Health protocol plan can be found on the town website.  Please bring your packet, face covering and any other weather-related necessities.