Food, water, shelter

In other belated news from Wednesday’s council meeting (besides the Winslow Way thing – see below), a new water resources specialist position was approved. The council made sure that the new job, which will focus on water quality and quantity, won’t mean another desk at City Hall. Public Works agreed not to hire for one of their two open engineering spots, and to swap it permanently for the water specialist position.

Also, the death knell was sounded for the Quay project. The effort to preserve over 70 downtown units as affordable housing was hit hard by an appraisal that put the complex’s value far below its asking price.

“The plug’s been pulled. Life support has ended. The Quay project is over,” said Ed Kushner, who has helped rally support to purchase the Quay.

The mayor’s farmland advisory group released its report on city-owned farms. In recent years, the city has purchased about 60 acres of farmland to support local farmers and bolster island food sources. The report stresses the need for better management of the largely fallow properties. Look for my story on city-owned farms next week.