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Thursday, April 9, 2020

COVID-19 delays Town Meeting and elections, threatens FY2021 budget

The relentless spread of COVID-19 and the unprecedented efforts to control it is wreaking havoc with plans for the familiar spring rituals of town government and threatening to upend next fiscal year’s budget.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported in Harvard

For the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began, confirmed cases of the disease were reported in Harvard last week. While the number of cases in Harvard is unknown, Worcester County’s number of confirmed cases grew from 433 to 1,172 between March 31 and April 7.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Debate rages over publicizing Harvard’s COVID-19 numbers

The first cases of COVID-19 were reported in Harvard last week, but the actual number of cases remains unavailable to the public.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Littleton nursing home draws rebuke from officials for its COVID-19 response

Life Care Center of Nashoba Valley in neighboring Littleton has joined the ranks of nursing homes across the state facing severe outbreaks of COVID-19. As of April 6, following the National Guard’s testing of all residents last weekend, the toll stood at five deaths and 65 residents who tested positive for the virus.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

State and federal officials provide fragmented response to COVID-19 pandemic

Faced with the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, citizens across the commonwealth have been looking to their elected officials for answers. While much uncertainty still exists, lawmakers in Congress and on Beacon Hill have passed several measures to provide relief for individuals, businesses, and municipalities.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Ayer Road reconstruction: Public outreach meeting on hold, funding process on track

Although the public outreach meeting for the Ayer Road reconstruction project has been postponed to a date to be determined, the delay has not affected its funding status. 

Thursday, April 2, 2020

A letter to the town in a time of emergency

From the Harvard Select Board and Emergency Management Team

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Stay-at-home extended; BOH won’t release town’s COVID-19 count

As COVID-19 surges in Massachusetts, it will be anyone’s guess when it has crept into Harvard. At its March 31 meeting, the Harvard Board of Health said it would follow the recommendation of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for smaller communities to refrain from reporting the number of COVID-19 cases to the public.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Council on Aging seeks volunteers, adjusts to COVID-19 rules

“We can use even more volunteers,” said Council on Aging Director Debbie Thompson, speaking of the “Adopt a Senior” program in a March 30 phone conversation. More seniors are requesting help getting groceries and medications. 

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Construction continues on new school with updated safety procedures

Although several cities in Massachusetts have shut down all construction jobs, a full crew of 30 to 40 people is still at work on Harvard’s new elementary school. Phil Conroy, project manager for Shawmut Construction, said in an email that, as of Tuesday, COVID-19 had not had any direct impact on the project’s schedule.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Local takeout businesses struggle

The Press spoke to managers and owners of several takeout restaurants in and around Harvard this week, and while the details varied, the bottom line was always this: lunchtime business is way down, and dinner business is not what it was. 

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Enrichment days are over; schools prepare to move ahead with curriculum

In this second phase of distance learning, students will have to turn in required work, and teachers will introduce new concepts, rather than focusing only on review of material introduced before the schools closed.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Senior tax workoff on hold

With the close of town buildings and suspension of programs, the town’s senior tax workoff program has come to a temporary halt.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Ayer Road public meeting postponed

The planned April 15 public meeting to discuss the proposed Ayer Road reconstruction project has been postponed.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Town braces as COVID-19 cases rise

With the number of COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts increasing at an unsettling rate, both the state and the town implemented further restrictions over the past week in an attempt to stop the spread. As of March 24, the number of cases in Massachusetts had grown to 1159, a 50% increase from the previous day; 73 of those cases were in Worcester County. 

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Offers abound to ‘adopt a senior,’ but await protocol to keep everyone safe

Council on Aging Director Debbie Thompson said in a Monday phone conversation that she has had lots of calls from people wanting to “adopt a senior” and deliver groceries and other necessities to homebound seniors and disabled residents. 

Thursday, March 26, 2020

School Committee gives hourly workers paid leave, delays decision on bus contract

The School Committee voted unanimously Monday to place the school district’s hourly, non-unionized staff on paid leave during the school shutdown, following the recommendation of the state education commissioner.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

State and local elections delayed until June, caucus until May

Harvard voters have an extra two months to make up their minds about which candidate to support in the contest between Cathy Clark and Dan Sena to represent the 37th Middlesex District in the state Legislature.

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