Construction projects like the new Braintree College have a new financial watchdog

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BRAINTREE – City Council has created a new City Oversight Committee to review city-run building projects.

The formation of the committee was proposed by District 6 Councilman Lawrence Mackin, following the payment of $1 million from the Petersen Trust to a former developer of the pool and ice rink to develop plans and obtain permits for the project.

Mackin told council at Tuesday night’s meeting that the city had started a major construction project, the new South Middle School, and was considering another for a fire headquarters.

“It will provide taxpayers with an additional layer of oversight,” Mackin said. “The goal is to make sure taxpayers’ money is well spent.”

Southern Secondary School in Braintree

The three-member committee would be appointed by the Chairman of the Board and would investigate matters referred to it by the Board.

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“The primary purpose of this committee is to ensure that proper procedures are followed, have been followed on past projects, to ensure responsible spending of taxpayers’ money, and to provide review and audit reports. ‘independent investigation’, says the charge of the oversight committee.

Nicole Taub, chief of staff to Mayor Charles Kokoros, said the mayor’s office had no objections to forming the committee.

“More eyes are definitely better” when it comes to project oversight, Taub said.

Nicole Taub is the Chief of Staff for the Mayor of Braintree, Charles Kokoros.

Nicole Taub is the Chief of Staff for the Mayor of Braintree, Charles Kokoros.

In other business, Board Chair Meredith Boericke announced the appointments of committee chairs and members for the current board’s two-year term.

“The work of the committee is no small task,” Boericke said. “This is where a lot of questions are asked and answered.”

District 2 Councilman Joseph Reynolds has been named chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, which reviews the budget and all spending matters. A first-term adviser, Reynolds was a member of the planning board and chief of staff to former mayor Joseph Sullivan.

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Councilman-at-large David Ringius will remain chair of the Ordinances and Rules Committee and Councilman-at-large Charles Ryan will continue to chair the public works committee.

General Councilor Shannon Hume will chair the Public Safety and Education and Library Committees, Mackin will chair the Seniors Affairs and Veterans Services and Parks and Recreation Committees, Ryan will chair the Health Issues Committee staff, new District 3 Councilwoman Elizabeth Maglio will chair the planning committee and Ringius will chair the traffic and safety committee.

Reynolds will serve as one of the council’s representatives on the Master Plan Steering Committee along with District 1 Councilwoman Julia Flaherty.

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The council also voted to authorize the mayor to enter into a grant agreement with Norfolk County for funding under the American Rescue Plan Act.

This article originally appeared on The Patriot Ledger: Braintree City Council Creates New Oversight Committee

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