October 30, 2018 Meeting Minutes

St. Mark’s Area Civic Association

Minutes of the October 30, 2018 Meeting

The meeting was called to order at 7:08 PM by Board Member Sydney Miller, because President Doug Hurley was stuck in Europe.  There were 26 souls present. 

Officer Mike Keaney gave his crime report for the last month.  Highlights included the following:  Oct. 4 at 7:40pm:  A car was pulled over at the corner of Dot Ave., & Centre St. with a broken tail light.  The driver had an expired license and a 9mm handgun.  Oct 23 at 12:35pm: a woman’s car was carjacked at 78 Dix Street while she was in it.  Oct. 28 at 3:00pm: a 19 year old was shooting hoops in the schoolyard when the school was closed.  The youth was arrested.  Mike noted a recent trend:  Catalytic converters were being stolen from cars in Cambridge and how it’s happening in Dorchester.   It’s happening mostly at dealerships.  The C11 annual holiday party will be held on December 14 at the Elevator Union Hall.  People are encouraged to donate toys at C11 on Gibson Street.  Volunteers to help wrap the gifts are also needed. 


Sgt. Brian Dunford came to the meeting because of the displeasure expressed at last month’s meeting about the lack of coordination/communication between the police and event organizers with the event held in Ashmont.  He said he was here to talk to anyone about it and would be off to the side of the room after the police presentation.


SMACA Development Committee Chair Matt Glynn spoke about a zoning variance request at 64 Shepton Street to renovate and enclose a front porch with windows.  He noted that the abutters were okay with the plan and that the Development Committee voted 4-0 to support it.  A vote was taken and it passed with a vote of 17-0 to support the request.  He also reported that the 500 Talbot Street project was being generally received okay.  The BPDA (formerly BRA) is reviewing the plans and a final hearing is being scheduled.  Lastly, Matt noted that a variance for 80-88 Welles Avenue to build 9 units above a retail store would be on the November 27 agenda. Matt has provided two links regarding the 500 Talbot project:



BPDA Summary page



Two of the three scheduled speakers on domestic violence gave a presentation.  Lt. Det. Mark Harrington, Commander of the BPD Domestic Violence Unit, said that there are 13 detectives currently on the job and there should be 17.  They have 14,000 incidents reported per year.  Districts 2,3, and 11 have the most volume and it includes elderly and disabled people.  Cesia Sanchez, Director of Housing Programs at Casa Myrna talked about how difficult it is to get victims to leave an abusive relationship. Sometimes it out of fear, sometimes it’s to keep the family together.  There are only 200 beds throughout the state and one has to take into consideration that 1 parent and 1 child means that 2 beds are occupied.  Domestic violence shelters are full; so some people are sent to homeless shelters, but there aren’t any resources for domestic violence help there.  She provided a Safelink number:  1-877-785-2020 or go to www.casamyrna.org.  Dr. Debbie Chambers of the Codman Square Health Center was a no-show.  A Q&A followed.  Highlights included the fact that one doesn’t have to make a report to the police to get services.  The School Police Unit handles some kid-on-kid problems and involves the Domestic Violence Unit if necessary.  Cesia indicated that LBGQT problems are difficult to solve, because it’s hard to tell who is the abuser.  


Andrea Campbell is holding a town meeting at the Codman Square Library on Saturday, November 3 from 10am to noon.


The meeting ended at 8:20.


Respectfully submitted,




Douglas Shaheen

Secretary, SMACA

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St. Marks Area Civic Association
The St. Marks Area Civic Association is a group of community conscious residents who want to improve the quality of life in our section of Dorchester. We meet in the lower hall of St, Marks Church, at 1725 Dorchester Ave on the last Tuesday of each month