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Quincy College Expands Flex Semesters

Quincy College announces the expansion of the Flex Semesters schedule to provide students with new flexible short-term study options. In this format, new classes begin every month throughout the rest of the year. The courses have been designed in response to feedback from students looking for schedules that facilitate an achievable academic/work/life balance.

Quincy College Flex Semesters are designed for students who want to earn college credits at an accelerated pace and who seek maximum flexibility in their course schedules. Students choose from Ten-Day, Five-Week, Seven-Week, or Ten-Week semesters with variable start dates at both the Quincy and Plymouth campuses. Registration is now open for the Fall Flex Semesters courses – classes begin in October, November and December. For a complete list of fall programs and to apply go to www.quincycollege.edu/flex

Additional Flex Semester courses will be offered beginning in the spring and summer semesters. All Flex Semesters are offered in addition to the traditional Fifteen Weeks semester courses.

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Gasoline Prices Drop Four Cents

Gasoline prices in Massachusetts are down four cents from last week, according to AAA Southern New England.

AAA’s September 22nd survey of prices in Massachusetts found self-serve, regular unleaded averaging $3.39 per gallon, down four cents from last week. Prices locally are six cents lower than a month ago. The current price is five cents more than the national average for self serve unleaded of $3.34. A year ago at this time the Massachusetts average price was 14 cents higher at $3.53.

The range in prices in the latest AAA survey for unleaded regular is 58 cents, from a low of $3.21 to a high of $3.79. AAA advises motorists to shop around for the best prices in their area, and to make sure they and their passengers buckle up — every trip, every time.

Today’s local gas prices and their ranges are as follows:

Self Serve                                                Grade

$3.399 ($3.219-$3.799)                                    Regular Unleaded

$3.619 ($3.359-$4.059)                                    Midgrade Unleaded

$3.739 ($3.459-$4.299)                                    Premium Unleaded

$3.829 ($3.609-$4.199)                                    Diesel

Find the most up-to-date local gas prices with the AAA Fuel Finder by logging onto AAA.com and clicking on Gas Saving Tips & Tools. AAA members can also obtain a copy of the Gas Watcher’s Guide at their local AAA Southern New England office.

AAA Fuel Saving Tip of the Week

Have your vehicle serviced immediately if the emissions malfunction indicator or “check engine” light comes on.

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New Sidewalk Work In Quincy Center This Week

New sidewalks that are part of the Adams Green pedestrian improvements will begin to be installed section-by-section, beginning the week of Sept. 22, on western side of Hancock Street between Dimmock Street and the MBTA driveway, city officials announce.

Pedestrians, at times, will be detoured to the opposite side of the street to accomodate the work. The section is scheduled to be completed in about a week.

Contractor A.R. Belli will also be continuing to work on fire hydrant connections around the project area during the week.

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Neighborhood Meeting On Proposed Detox Clinic Sept. 25

A neighborhood meeting on will be held Thursday, Sept. 25, at 6:30 p.m. inside Central Middle School’s auditorium to discuss a proposal to open the Phoenix House Quincy Center.

Phoenix House New England, in partnership with the Gavin Center, plans to purchase the facility at 43 Old Colony Ave., currently home owned by Cerebral Palsy of Massachusetts. The proposed Phoenix House Quincy Center would provide acute detoxification and clinical stabilization services in a 64-bed facility. The facility will serve individuals from across the state but primarily from Quincy.

Ward 5 Councillor Kirsten Hughes is hosting the meeting. Representatives from both Phoenix House and the Quincy Police Department are scheduled to attend as well to respond to any questions, comments or concerns residents may have.

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QHA Maintenance Manager Resigns

By KRIS KALABOKAS

David Ferris has resigned from his position as maintenance manager for the Quincy Housing Authority after reports revealed earlier this year that maintenance mismanagement led to unsafe and unsanitary living conditions for housing authority tenants.

Ferris was put on paid administrative leave July 9. He handed in his resignation on Sept. 12.

Quincy Housing Authority Executive Director Jim Lydon said he decided to put him on leave early in the year after he said he found a bag of documents shredded and concealed by Ferris.

Orders sent to the maintenance department dating back to 2008 were also found that were either ignored or flagged as low priority by Ferris. He also knowingly signed off on work orders that were never completed said Lydon.

Ferris held the $75,000 per year position for over 10 years and managed roughly 50 maintenance workers.

An internal investigation led by law firm Murphy, Hesse, Toome & Lehane was launched in July, however Lydon could not elaborate on what the investigation revealed. He said Ferris’ use of intimidation and bullying added to residents’ reluctance to contact QHA authorities when faced with maintenance issues, further delaying necessary repairs.

A report following the inspection of ten percent of Quincy’s state-aided public housing units and common areas conducted on March 31, April 1, and April 3 of 2014 by the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) revealed subpar living conditions in need of immediate repair. Another report issued on April 30 following a reinspection outlined operational issues such as poor communication between the maintenance department and the authority as well as physical condition concerns such as exposed electrical wiring, holes in walls, improperly stored combustibles, mold and mildew, and in one case raw sewage from a unit’s bathroom leaking through the floor and onto a tenant’s stove in the unit below.

“I think we’ve historically had clashes between maintenance and modernization with both [managers] being at about the same level in terms of management but tossing problems back and forth between one another,” said Lydon during an interview in August.

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