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Council Lifts Farmers Market Rules

Farmers Market organizers say the weekly event will take place in Attleboro this year.

In a major case of "what a difference a week makes," the City Council on Tuesday voted to lift most of the restrictions it had placed last week on the Attleboro Farmers Market. In response to the decision, market organizers backed off their earlier statement .

Among the changes approved on Tuesday, the market will not have to hire police detail unless the police chief determined it was needed. Also, most of the parking restrictions on market patrons for the 74 North Main Street municipal lot next to the library were removed.

The two related measures (one regarding the summer months and the other regarding the fall months) were approved by votes of 9-2 (Peter Blais and Jeremy Denlea opposed) and 8-3 (Blais, Denlea and Sara-Lynn Reynolds opposed). Discussion and debate lasted more than three hours.

"We are really pleased," said Eddie Porreca, vendor coordinator for the farmers market, after the meeting. "This was an example of democracy in action. The system worked."

Linda Binns, acting chair of the Library Board of Trustees, did not share Porreca's enthusiasm.

"[The council] threw us under the bus," she said. "We tried our best to approach this with dignity and it didn't work."

Binns said she feared the approved measures would create a safety risk. However, she said the library would manage to co-exist with the market when it takes place on Saturdays from June to October (with no market taking place on the Saturday of the library bookfair).

Porreca said, as they did last year, organizers would offer library officials a tent and table to promote their events and do whatever else they wanted during the market.

The market issue was back on the agenda because Councilor Jonathan Weydt had filed a motion the day after last Tuesday's meeting for the council to reconsider its decision on the restrictions.

Bill K. April 11, 2012 at 02:17 PM
Adam: I too recall Blais mentioning that if the council proceeds as it was that they were going to be there until midnight and the he upped his number from 1500 to 3000 at one point. A showman at his finest! Blais is must see TV! Ditto on your assessment of Denlea. Concerned: The councilor you refer to has on numerous occasions during her tenure displayed less than a professional demeanor while the council has been in session, making side comments to her fellow councilor seated to her side. President Cook may need to reel her in a tad. Additionally watch her at the end of the council meeting, she's packed up and ready to bolt as soon as the meeting is ended. Reminds me of a student at the end of the school day
Alice Allard April 11, 2012 at 03:04 PM
I for one would love to see Mr. Blais actions on YouTube. Is it possible? I think at another time a different councilor was featured on a YouTube video? Not to sure as I'm relatively new to Attleboro and because I don't subscribe to cable I cannot get channel 98 so I missed the whole show. Can anyone post this for us?
Richard W. Lunt April 11, 2012 at 03:09 PM
Congratulations to the City Council for voting on this again. What many on the council did was listen to the the people whom they work for and that's the citizens who believe that the farmers market is a good thing for Attleboro. This is a win-win situation for the city because the market will draw business to downtown and even draw people to the library as well. Good Job Attleboro City Council!
Wayne Lacroix April 11, 2012 at 03:10 PM
I agree political satire at it's finest. But what I didn't understand were the nasty comments directed to Mr. Weydt from Mr. Dilissio at the beginning. It seemed they were aligned in their votes. Any insight? I'm confused.
concernedcitizen April 11, 2012 at 03:13 PM
Wayne, can you sum up the comments? I worked late and missed the early part of the meeting. Thanks!
Wayne Lacroix April 11, 2012 at 03:24 PM
Concernedcitizen- It appeared that Mr. Dilissio was upset that Mr. Weydt exercised his right for reconsideration. It was very confusing. Then Mr. Weydt profusely apologized to him. (For what isn't clear) Did anyone pick up on that?
Adam Chamberlain April 11, 2012 at 03:26 PM
Wayne, i agree, that was odd. I think Dilissio felt that Weydt took too much of the credit for the reconsideration and took credit for amendments that were offered in the last meeting. Although, that is just my opinion and what I gathered from his comments. I don't think Weydt was in the wrong to reach out to the chief of police and other parties to find a solution. I feel he was doing his job, he listened to his constituents, he took this matter seriously and tired to find a solution. If Dilissio feels that was done behind the back of the special council that is his problem. I also wonder since Dilissio was so upset with Weydt taking credit, why was Weydt's name on the reconsideration vote, why didn't Dilisso file the motion for reconsidertion? Was it a timing thing? Did Weydt file the paper work sooner? The whole thing seemed strange to me. I don't think they were at odds with each other, it seemed to me that they both were the most instrumental in making last night happen.
Roxanne Houghton April 11, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Mr. Weydt filed for Reconsideration to save the Farmers Market. Any other Councilor could have taken the initiative to do so, but they didnt - by their own choice.. Mr. Weydt's actions made it possible to "re-air" the issue and ended in a favorable vote for the FM. If Mr. Weydt had not filed, then Councilor Mark Cooper would have, and then he would have been the target of an attack. If another Councilor's ego was hurt, thats too bad. Several Council members did everything in their power to keep the Reconsideration from being filed. The Sun printed that story. To start off a meeting. last nite,that was so important to so many people, with a personal attack by Councilor DiLisio, was petty. It did nothing to help the FM. Thank you to Councilor Weydt and congratulations to the Farmers Market - you people put your heart and soul into this, and our democratic process worked.
Bill K. April 11, 2012 at 03:57 PM
Alice: That councilor was Jerry Chase who was put on Youtube for an outburst during a meeting. I believe it revolved around violating the open meeting law by emailing several fellow councilors re: he upcoming vote on a measure that was due before the council.
Diana April April 11, 2012 at 04:04 PM
imo, I think put Weydt in his place and gave him a proper humiliation. Weydt made a decision without coming to the council first, which is also his responsibility. I am glad, however, that Weydt came to his senses and made the right decision. I'm also really glad he made a public apology! That's classy.
Mary Blanchard April 11, 2012 at 04:20 PM
As a disabled person who frequents the market on Saturday mornings I must thank Councilor Wedyt for bringing up his argument concerning ADA handicap parking. Unfortunately He was the only councilor to relate to this matter. Good job councilor.
Steve Hopkins April 11, 2012 at 06:41 PM
Ms binns ...why would the library. Not to run book on same day as farmers market? Seems like you would have many more potential customers.
Adam Tellier April 11, 2012 at 07:09 PM
Instead of focusing on the negatives, the positive outcome of this meeting is what should been the focus of these comments. Yes, Mr. Blais stressed public safety a little too much. Yes, one councilor was completely library bias throughout this entire ordeal. However, this entire situation shows how the new municipal council works together. I am glad that the majority of the councilors reached a common ground. I am glad, although inconsistent with his voting, Mr. Weydt did what he did, and brought this item back to the table. He should did the right thing in this situation, he fought for what he believed was right. The majority of the council rightfully represented their consituents. Thank You to the majority of the council for doing the right thing, I just hope that Ms. Binns ideology does not represent that of the entirer library. In that case, the lbrary and the farmers market will be unable to coexist. Hopefully they set aside their differneces, and this issue is not brought up again next year.
Adam Tellier April 11, 2012 at 07:41 PM
Instead of focusing on the negatives, the positive outcome of this meeting is what should been the focus of these comments. Yes, Mr. Blais stressed public safety a little too much. Yes, one councilor was completely library bias throughout this entire ordeal. However, this entire situation shows how the new municipal council works together. I am glad that the majority of the councilors reached a common ground. I am glad, although inconsistent with his voting, Mr. Weydt did what he did, and brought this item back to the table. He should did the right thing in this situation, he fought for what he believed was right. The majority of the council rightfully represented their constituents. Thank You to the majority of the council for doing the right thing, I just hope that Ms. Binns ideology does not represent that of the entire library. In that case, the library and the farmers market will be unable to coexist. Hopefully they set aside their differences, and this issue is not brought up again next year.
parkst April 11, 2012 at 07:55 PM
generally from what i see, I think focusing on the positive in comments sections is against the rules of the internet
Adam Tellier April 11, 2012 at 08:09 PM
Mr. Lacroix, To the best of my knowledge, Mr. DiLiso made those statements for a couple of reasons. Those reasons being: a.) Mr. Weydt publically said that the committee failed, without speaking with any of the committee members. This was a mistake because he should have talked with members of the special committee before publically selling them out. b.) Mr. Weydt issued statements that he had had new ideas for it, that were either previously presented by Mr. DiLisio or had previously been attempted. For example "One idea Weydt has as a possible resolution is for the Friends of the Attleboro Public Library to be given a booth at the market that it could use to sell books." This was a statement in one of the previous articles in regards to this issue. This was previously offered by the farmers market. I think that Mr. DiLisio was aggravated when Mr. Weydt proposed similar amendments that he (Mr. Weydt) voted down in previous meetings. As mentioned in my comments in previous articles, the committee, especially Mr. DiLisio, have spent the past month tirelessly trying to get this issue settled. By Mr. Weydt, saying that their committee failed and proposing amendments he voted down, is dissrespectful. As you can see below, I agree with Mr. Weydt's decision to push the reconsideration. Please do not interpret this as a statement against Mr. Weydt, he is a very respectable councilor, which was why I was surprised to see the comments, etc. Hope this clarifies things!
Wayne Lacroix April 11, 2012 at 09:05 PM
Mr. Tellier and Mr. Chamberlain, Thank you for helping me understand but it leaves me with one question. Would it be a correct assumption that the initial committee failed by not gaining the results of last evenings vote? I believe they were both instrumental and key players as a result. Mr Weydt hammering away amendment after amendment, while Mr. Dilissio voting in favor.
Just sayin' April 11, 2012 at 09:31 PM
AACS might have them on their website. I would give them a call. I've been meaning to do that myself but keep remembering to call when I'm not near a phone!
Just sayin' April 11, 2012 at 09:36 PM
concernedcitizen - Let's hope we end up being pleasantly surprised.
concernedcitizen April 11, 2012 at 09:48 PM
Honestly, I think it's best to share your opinion of what went on- the positives and the negatives. All of these people will come up for reelection and it's good to gain a sense of public opinion. In my case, I haven't paid a lot of attention to the city council over the last few years. I am grateful that comments in the Patch and quotes in the Sun Chronicle got me to tune in to the antics of certain city council members. I will be a much smarter voter next time around.
Adam Tellier April 11, 2012 at 10:02 PM
Mr. Lacroix, I believe that you're Sumption is an opinion therefore your opinion cannot be incorrect. However, my belief is that the committee was successful. It is because of the effort put forth by the committee that Mr. Weydt was able to propose the amendments to which you are referring. The amendments were based off of ideas previously proposed. However, I feel that they were necessary amendments. The votes you are referring to that they committed did not receive is because the idea was still widely controversial, as you can tell by the voting record. I'm not sure whether or not your question is why Mr. DiLisio decided to vote for the amendments on the floor, eventhough they were motioned by Mr. Weydt. However, Mr. Dilisio votes for the better of the city not based off of personal conflicts.
Kramer April 12, 2012 at 03:21 AM
Nobody seems to mention the bias in favor of the AFM by Conti. How convenient! He should be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Wait for the 2013 chapter because, unfortunately, we will be wasting more time and tax payers money in this controversy next year. I have no doubts. See you next year!
GiGi Grace April 13, 2012 at 03:12 AM
Youthful A. Tellier. Sumption is not a word.
Dolly April 13, 2012 at 03:27 AM
Thank you. I'm glad someone else knows math equations. Mr. Doctor of Jurispurdence wants his ward to benefit aka himself and not benefit the entire community, sadly. I also believe he is heavily aligned with the administration. Mr. Mayor wants AFM in his back yard because he didn't initiate the new concept.
Migsy April 13, 2012 at 03:57 AM
Kramer, care to explain that? I'm confused what you are trying to say? What is convenient? Also, where was taxpayer money spent? You sound like a hater. What did he ever do to you or the constituents that was wrong? I've seen him at the Senior Show - you're right he's pretty good!
Just sayin' April 13, 2012 at 11:23 AM
gigi - likely he hit "cap lock - s -s -u " instead of "a - s -s - u" as the cap lock, a, and s keys are neighbors on the keyboard
GiGi Grace April 13, 2012 at 02:57 PM
Yes. likely.
Adam Tellier April 13, 2012 at 03:20 PM
That is exactly what happened. Thank you for explaining it. Apparently some do not recognize the concept of a typo.
Dolly April 18, 2012 at 12:40 AM
Kramer, I'm interested in your clarification also.
GiGi Grace April 27, 2012 at 12:32 AM
I had a good laugh reading Tuesday’s Sun Cronicle, Attleboro Notebook page B5, subtitled Praise for the rec chief. Certainly Mr. Walsh has done a good job in his position as Director. Councilor Peter Blais’ comments were startling when he disclosed that he carried a .38 caliber hand gun to work on Pine Street for protection every day. He has said more recently that he is retired so I wonder where he keeps that gun now. With this disclosure by Mr. Blais, I can’t help wondering what his definition is of “public safety”. Imagine that he wants the Attleboro Farmers Market to locate in an area he doesn’t go to unarmed!

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