Select Board roundup: Nasrullah elected chair; HCA gets outdoor alcohol license for summer

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At Tuesday’s meeting the Select Board reorganized, with Irfan Nasrullah elected chair by a unanimous vote. Nasrullah, who served as vice chair for the past year, was nominated by outgoing chair Brendan Tedstone (who remains a board member).

“I’m proud to pass the chairmanship over to him,” Tedstone said.

Amy Ritterbusch was unanimously elected vice chair.

Nasrullah proceeded to pay tribute to former member Brian Herr, who departed the board last month after choosing not to run for reelection.

“His service has been invaluable, and he will be sorely missed,” Nasrullah said.

Muriel Kramer, who took Herr’s seat on the board, noted that “Herr has made a contribution over the decades, not years,” to the town.

HCA approved for outside alcohol license

The Hopkinton Center for the Arts was unanimously approved for an exception to its lease addendum that will allow the organization to serve alcohol outside during outdoor events — concerts, plays, art shows and dance nights — this summer.

Per the new lease alcohol can be served from 5-8 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and from 5-8:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The alcohol will be served by a licensed caterer.

HCA executive director Kelly Grill noted that the organization already is allowed to serve alcohol inside, and the outside alcohol service area would be contained by a fence and monitored by volunteers. The designated alcohol consumption areas are in the back of the building, in the grassy areas between the building and the Hopkinton High School parking lot.

Superintendent of schools Carol Cavanaugh previously had questioned whether allowing alcohol to be served so close to the high school would be wise. However, on Tuesday she said she checked with the facilities director and HHS principal and learned there are no school-sponsored events on a Friday or Saturday evening in July and August.

Nasrullah questioned why the HCA could not return to indoor events, and Grill said some people remain uncomfortable being part a large group in a small indoor space.

Kramer said she would support it as a onetime exception to help a local organization recover from the pandemic, although she would be more hesitant should it come up again next year.

“I am more willing to consider it this summer because of the circumstances,” Kramer said, adding, “I do think it’s an exception rather than a rule circumstance.”

Misc.: School Building Committee dissolved

The board voted unanimously to approve the dissolution of the Elementary School Building Committee for Marathon Elementary School. Committee chair Joe Markey noted that although Marathon School opened in 2018, there was a lot of administrative work that needed to be completed over the past three years. At its meeting last month, the committee voted to dissolve. The board expressed appreciation to Markey and the committee — Mike Shepard, John Weaver and Rob Nickerson — for their work, which included delivering the school $4 million under the amount approved by Town Meeting. …

Robert LeDuc was unanimously approved to be hired as working foreman (highway) for the Department of Public Works. The position became available when Gerard Berthelette left for a job in the private sector last year. …

The board unanimously approved a transfer in ownership of the package store alcohol license for two stores. At Hopkinton Wine & Spirits (77 West Main St.), the license is being transferred from RKY-HPTK Corp. to Jai Shiv Om Kara Inc. At Mobil Mart Hopkinton (92 West Main St.), the license is being transferred from Hopkinton Friendly Service to Global Montello Corp. …

A $2,000 gift from the Hopkinton Community Partnership to the K-9 gift account was unanimously accepted by the board.

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