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.
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.
By SCOTT JACKSON
New regulations for bodyworks operating in Quincy will be introduced during Monday’s City Council meeting.
The new regulations, proposed by Mayor Thomas Koch, would apply to businesses offering reflexology or Asian bodywork, including acupressure, AMMA therapy, Chi Nei Tsang, five-element Shiatsu, integrative eclectic Shiatsu, Japanese Shiatsu, Jin Shin Do, Bodymind Acupressure, macrobiotic Shiatsu, traditional Thai massage, Tuina, Zen Shiatsu, and Ayurvedic medicine.
Licensed physicians, nurses, acupuncturists, and physical and massage therapists would be exempt from the new regulations. Hospitals, long-term care facilities, and home health agencies licensed by the state would also be exempted.
Under the proposed new regulations, any individual wishing to practice bodyworks in the city would need to obtain a license from the Quincy Health Department. To do so, the person must fill out an application and provide a passport type photo, a transcript from an education institution, verification of the successful completion of an applicable national certification exam; two letters of professional recommendation. Applicants must also undergo a Criminal Offenders Record Information (CORI) check and disclose any conviction for any sexual-related offense within the past 10 years, any revocation or denial of a license to practice bodywork in any state or municipality, and any loss or restriction of certification. All applicants would need to be at least 18 years old.
Applicants would pay a $75 application fee. The licenses would be valid for one year and could be renewed for a $75 fee.
A separate license process would be put in place for those wishing to operate a bodyworks establishment. The regulations require licensed establishments to only use licensed therapists for bodyworks; therapists would have to adhere to cleanliness standards and be prohibited from wearing clothes exposing any private part. All equipment used in the establishment must be kept clean; bodyworks would only be allowed in rooms with adequate lighting and ventilation. No sexual activity or alcoholic beverages would be allowed in a licensed establishment.
Applicants seeking to open an establishment would pay a $100 fee, renewable each year for $100.
Violations of the proposed new regulations could face a $1,000 fine for criminal penalties. Non-criminal penalties would be capped at a $50 civil fine.