WESTFORD -- The Board of Selectmen heard from several groups Tuesday who are preparing to ready their proposals in advance of Special Town Meeting Oct. 21. Selectmen also held an executive session and discussed the expansion of a local business.
* Selectmen began their meeting with a closed-door executive session on the topic of "the McShea claim." Last Thursday, the Boston Appeals Court heard from attorneys on the Mary Ann McShea case, which goes back more than 10 years. McShea, a former Westford police officer, injured her head and back in a serious fall while on duty and has since been arguing in court the town should cover the entirety of her medical expenses. She served for six-and-a-half years following her fall in 1991. The town is arguing McShea's bills should not be paid back any further than they already have because an agreement made between McShea and a former town manager did not gain proper authorization from the Board of Selectmen then. The town is arguing the deal is invalid.
* A prominent manufacturing business, Cynosure, which works in the cosmetics and aesthetics laser industry, is looking to expand its business on Carlisle Road and seeking to apply for tax increment financing. Executive Vice President Tim Baker said the business is brining 200 new jobs to the community and expanding its building to 145,000 square feet. Selectmen heard from Baker regarding some of his intentions Tuesday night.
* Selectman Valerie Wormell presented a proposed junk dealers' bylaw Tuesday she has crafted with a few other residents, which would regulate donation bins setting up in town. The bylaw stipulates various companies and nonprofit groups looking to collect clothing and books register with the town and pay an annual fee of $50. Wormell said she is looking to ban the setting up wooden donation boxes in town, too, because she said several were set on fire in the Nabnasset area in recent years. A Sun reporter previously called the Westford Fire Department to confirm these reports but was told by officials they have no documentation of those fires taking place.
* Selectmen approved a sign for the business "Craft Beer Cellar" which opens Thursday at 142 Littleton Road. Selectmen told owner Walter Miska the illuminated sign would be allowed provided it is turned off 30 minutes after he business closes.
* Director of Land Use Management Chris Kluchman presented a sign bylaw proposal to selectmen for their review. Selectman Andrea Peraner-Sweet said she was concerned some of the changes to allow "temporary signs," or pop-up signs businesses use on the sidewalks outside their locations, would crop up everywhere along Route 110 now that the proposal allows them to stay up for longer than 14 days. Kluchman said she has heard from local businesses these signs are an essential part of their business operations.
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