Selectboard logo, May 20, 2019
“People in town get wonderful services for what they pay."

-- Mary W. O’Connor

Arlington’s fiscal 2022 tax rate will increase slightly, to $11.42, up from $11.34 in fiscal '21, expanding the average tax bill to $9,646, from $9,405.

The Select Board on Nov. 22 unanimously approved the recommendations of the Board of Assessors. The state Department of Revenue must support the new rate.

“The tax rate will increase by only 8 cents per thousand [of assessed valuation] because Arlington’s home values didn’t significantly increase that much this year,” said Mary W. O’Connor, board of assessors' member. “People in town get wonderful services for what they pay for because this is a very well-run town and offers many amenities.” 

As is pointed out annually during the assessors' presentation, the town's single-family house tax rate is significantly lower than neighboring towns of Belmont, Winchester and Lexington, said Paul Tierney, director of assessors.

The average single-family house value in Arlington is now $844,657.

The town long has had a single tax rate for residential and business.

See the assessors' presentation >>  

Nearly $37K for Youth Counseling Center

The Select Board unanimously approved, and thanked, donations received from the Cummings Foundation ($35,000) and Ocean State Job Lot Charitable Foundation ($180,00).

“When donations are provided to the town, we need to make sure the Select Board finds the donors acceptable,” explained Town Counsel Douglas Heim.

This year’s funds will be donated to the Arlington Youth Counseling Center.

In a memo to the Select Board, Christine Bongiorno, health and human services director, wrote, “The Department of Health and Human Services regularly receives funds from various entities to create and maintain programs in . . . Health; Council on Aging; Veterans Services; Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; and the Arlington Youth Counseling Center.” 

“I’m pleased that the money is going to the Arlington Youth Counseling Center,” said board member Eric Helmuth. 

Board of assessors' chair will not seek reelection

Robert Greeley, board of assessors chair, will not seek reelection in spring 2022 because he is moving out of town. Greeley served on the board of assessors for 39 years. 

“This is a very bittersweet night for me. Three years ago Kevin passed away,” said Greeley, referring to his brother and longtime Select Board member.

“I’ve worked for, or with, every town manager since the Town Manager Act was passed in 1952. I’ve had the benefit of working with great assessors, department heads and assessors. I’ve never had a bad day in the office. I enjoyed every minute of it, and found it fulfilling. The town offers anything and everything from cradle to grave; it’s a great town from the standpoint of tolerance and inclusiveness,” added Greeley.

Select Board members expressed their appreciation:

Board Chair Steve DeCourcey: “Thank you for your friendship and candor and your service to the community. You have been a dedicated employee and resource that we have turned to for expertise.”

John Hurd: “You’ve been a major force in town for a long time. Your service has been second to none. We really appreciate everything you’ve done, and you’ll certainly be missed.”

Len Diggins: “Thanks for all you did for the town.”

Eric Helmuth: “It’s a privilege, and humbling, to think of my first year of service compared to the exceptional legacy that you and your family have made to this town. You will be missed; this town will not be the same. However, that legacy of service will endure and remain part of what makes Arlington a great place to live.”

Diane Mahon: “It’s bittersweet for all of us who’ve had the opportunity to work with you.” 

Water, sewer separated from real estate tax bills

This is the last year that the water-and-sewer debt will be included on real estate tax bills, because the debt is now paid off, explained Tierney, and unanimously approved by the board.

 See the entire Nov. 22 broadcast on ACMi:

Nov. 30, 2021: Frustrated over Chestnut St. repair delays, town now on MassDOT’s radar

This news summary by YourArlington freelance writer Susan Gilbert was published Friday, Dec. 3, 2021.