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'Task Force' to Look at Options for Patton Land

A 10 member task force, including three at-large members from the community, will begin to review the options to use the Patton estate, which is planned to be donated to the town of Hamilton.

Three community members will join Hamilton town leaders during the next few months in shaping the future of the Patton property.

Joanne Patton that she plans to donate her Asbury Street home and 27 acres to the town. The donation will need the approval of voters at Annual Town Meeting in May.

But before that vote, town officials want to come up with a use or uses for the property so that it does not cost the town additional money to own or maintain.

“I’ve heard lots of input and everyone is very excited about it,” said Jennifer Scuteri, chairman of the Board of Selectmen, this week as the board discussed the gift while meeting at .

Last week, members of the Planning Board

“I really want to move this process along,” Scuteri said.

Selectmen have established a task force that is being called the Patton Family Gift Advisory Committee.

The task force will “assess the proposed gift of the Patton Estate to the town and make recommendations to the Selectmen on the best use of the property,” according to a town press release issued this week.

“To accept the gift we really have to have an outline of what we are accepting,” Scuteri said.

Many of the members of the 10-member committee have been named. It will include representatives of the town’s land use boards including Planning Board Chairman Peter Clark, Zoning Board of Appeals Chairman Bill Bowler, Community Preservation Committee member Peter Britton and Hamilton-Wenham Recreation Commission Chairman John Cusolito.  A member of the Conservation Commission will also be named to the task force. The Board of Selectmen will name its two members to the task force when it meets on Monday.

In addition, three community members not associated with any land use board will be named to the committee. Some residents have already expressed interest, Scuteri said.

Among the skills and expertise needed are residents with experience in real estate law, development, recreation, conservation and land preservation, Scuteri said.

Scuteri said she expects the committee to meet every other week. Task force members will all be expected to work in a collaborative manner, according to the announcement for the committee applications.

For residents who are interested in being on the task force, the deadline to submit an appointment application is Feb. 3.

Anyone interested should fill out the appointment application – found on the town website and also attached to this story as a PDF - and send it to Christine Lindberg, assistant to Town Manager Michael Lombardo, via e-mail at clindberg@hamiltonma.gov.

Jennifer Flynn January 20, 2012 at 07:19 PM
What an opportunity this is. I am so eager to hear proposals!
richard boroff January 20, 2012 at 09:56 PM
The town needs more land for sports fields, both for the schools and for youth athletics. Given that sports are very important to the citizens of Hamilton and Wenham, this should be a consideration with this gift.

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