For Immediate Release - March 16, 2012


Funds 28 projects across the Commonwealth for regionalization, efficiency initiatives

BOSTON – Friday, March 16, 2012 – Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray and Secretary of Administration and Finance Jay Gonzalez today announced the 28 recipients of the $4 million Community Innovation Challenge (CIC) grant program. The CIC grant program’s focus is to incentivize and support innovative regionalization and other cost saving initiatives that will help local governments increase cost-efficiency while maintaining service delivery.   

"We remain committed to providing key resources and tools to support our cities and towns in managing through this fiscal crisis and beyond," said Governor Deval Patrick. “Through regionalization of services, we are creating innovative opportunities for neighboring communities to build partnerships to deliver local services more effectively and efficiently."  

“Our Administration continues to work closely with municipal managers and local planners to deliver the resources they need to develop cost-saving measures and reforms for critical local services like public health, education and public safety,” said Lieutenant Governor Murray, who previously chaired the Regionalization Advisory Commission and currently chairs the Municipal Affairs Coordinating Cabinet. “Each of the Community Innovation Challenge award recipients have proposed innovative opportunities to collaborate, regionalize and help maintain local services that will be delivered more effectively and efficiently to taxpayers in 138 communities across the Commonwealth.”

An additional $1 million in funding for regionalization projects in Norfolk County was provided in the 2012 supplemental budget signed by Governor Patrick in February 2012. These projects will support programs including regional animal control, regional veterans’ services, regional municipal payroll services, regional municipal engineering services and the additional hiring of a regional services coordinator for Norfolk County communities.

“Our new fiscal reality demands that government change the way it does business to stretch every taxpayer dollar as far as possible,” said Secretary Gonzalez. “The Patrick-Murray Administration has been driving change at the state level, and the Community Innovation Challenge Grant program is just one of the many ways we are working to give cities and towns the tools they need to drive change in local government too.”

Regionalization allows for neighboring communities to build partnerships to engage in shared services, inter-municipal agreements, municipal collaborations, consolidations, mutual aid and regional planning to reduce the risk of duplicating efforts and spending limited taxpayer dollars unnecessarily.

The 28 project recipients span Massachusetts from the town of Mt. Washington to the city of Boston and include five Gateway Cities, including Barnstable, Lowell, Worcester, Taunton and Springfield.

The Patrick-Murray Administration has had recent success with implementing regionalization grants. Since 2008, the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security has awarded over $35 million in development grant funds involving 36 projects and about 248 communities through the Public Safety Answering Point & Regional Emergency Communication Center Support and Incentive Grant. Additionally, the Public Health District Planning Grant, through the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, has awarded federal planning grants to 11 groups of municipalities, representing a total of 113 communities serving 1.8 million residents, interested in developing regional public health districts.

In the Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 budget, Governor Patrick proposed the development of the CIC grant program to encourage and incentivize regionalization and other innovative efficiency initiatives. The CIC grant program was supported by the Legislature, providing $4 million for regionalization and other initiatives that will improve the effectiveness and efficiency in the delivery of local services. Governor Patrick proposed an additional $7 million in funding for the CIC grant program in his FY13 budget proposal.

“This is great news for Cape Cod,” said Senate President Therese Murray. “This funding will allow the Cape to develop a shared system that will automate and streamline application services and result in cost savings for the towns on Cape Cod. The Cape Cod Commission is committed to the economic, environmental and preservation needs of the Cape Cod region and it’s important that we continue to develop innovative plans and solutions to ensure that our towns are running effectively and efficiently.”

“I commend the Patrick-Murray Administration for their efforts in securing funds for the Community Innovation Challenge Grant Program,” said House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo. “As we continue to emerge from these tough economic times, it remains important that legislators continue to find ways to make government more effective and efficient.”

2012 Community Innovation Challenge Grant Recipients:

Education Projects

Freetown-Lakeville Regional School District, Town of Freetown and Lakeville

  • $173,900 for Special Education Cost Savings through Full Regionalization 

Manchester-Essex Regional School District

  • $109,000 for Regionalizing Special Education Services for Children with Dyslexia 

Hampshire Regional School District, Chesterfield-Goshen Regional School District, Towns of Southampton, Westhampton and Williamsburg

  • $78,000 for Regionalized Technology Support Services 

Southwick-Tolland Regional School District, Town of Granville

  • $44,000 for Town of Granville to join Southwick-Tolland Regional School District 

Monomoy Regional School District, Towns of Chatham and Harwich

  • $204,000 for Monomoy Regional School District Transition 

Towns of Cheshire and Lanesborough, Northern Berkshire Vocational Regional District

  • $23,975 for Vocational/Technical School District Expansion 

Environment/Public Works Projects

Towns of Spencer, Auburn, Charlton, Dudley, Holden, Leicester, Millbury, Oxford, Paxton, Shrewsbury, Sturbridge, Webster and West Boylston

  • $310,000 for Regionalizing Municipal Stormwater Management in Central Massachusetts through Collaborative Education, Data Management, and Policy Development 

Towns of Brookfield, Brimfield, East Brookfield, Warren and West Brookfield

  • $58,000 for Regional Equipment Sharing Cooperative (RHE COOP) 

Towns of Harwich and Chatham

  • $25,500 for Shared Municipal Portable Closed Loop Pressure Wash Water Recycle System for Commercial Fishing Fleets in Harwich and Chatham 

Pioneer Valley Planning Commission

  • $132,455 for Pioneer Valley Conservation Commissions Compact 

Civic Engagement Projects


  • $400,000 for Commonwealth Citizens Connect App Development for Local Governments across Massachusetts

Online Municipal Services and Systems Projects

Cape Cod Commission, Towns of Barnstable, Brewster, Chatham, Dennis, Eastham, Falmouth, Harwich, Mashpee, Orleans, Nantucket, Provincetown, Sandwich, Truro, Wellfleet and Yarmouth

  • $500,000 for Digital Regionalization: Permit, License, and Inspection Automation 


Town of Royalston and other municipalities in the Community Software Consortium

  • $290,710 for Cloud-based Open Source Integrated Municipal Financial Management 


Towns of Becket, Dalton, Lee, Monterey, Lenox, Richmond and Sheffield, Berkshire Regional Planning Commission

  • $110,835 for Berkshire On-line Municipal Building Permits


Performance Management Projects

Amesbury, Lowell, Somerville, Woburn and Worcester

  • $373,400 for Massachusetts Statewide Performance Management Program 

Public Health Projects

Franklin Regional Council of Governments, Towns of Buckland, Charlemont, Deerfield, Gill, Hawley, Monroe, Granby and Plainfield

  • $119,375 for Franklin County Cooperative Public Health Service 

Berkshire Regional Planning Commission, Towns of Adams, Alford, Becket, Clarksburg, Dalton, Egremont, Great Barrington, Hancock, Lanesborough, Mt. Washington, New Marlborough, North Adams, Peru, Richmond, Sandisfield, Savoy, Sheffield, Washington, West Stockbridge, Williamstown and Windsor

  • $40,000 for Berkshire Health Alliance Public Health Nurse Program 

Towns of Ashland, Medway, and Hopkinton

  • $15,000 for Provision of Electronic Food Inspections 

Public Safety Projects

Towns of Ashland and Hopkinton

  • $175,000 for Ashland-Hopkinton Fire Services Collaborative 

Northampton, Springfield, Greenfield, Chesterfield, Easthampton, Granby, Montague, Turners Falls and Ware.

  • $47,000 for NoFIRES - Northwestern Juvenile Fire Intervention Response, Education, and Safety Partnership 

Franklin Regional Council of Governments, Greenfield, Bernardston, Buckland, Colrain, Conway, Deerfield, Erving, Gill, Heath, Montague, Warwick and Whatley

  • $19,000 for Franklin County Regional Dog Officer Control and Kennel 

Norfolk County

  • $150,000 for Regional Animal Control Officer 

Abington, Avon, Hanover, Hingham, Holbrook and West Bridgewater, Bridgewater-Raynham Regional School District, South Shore Vocational Technical High School and Whitman-Hanson Regional School District

  • $199,690 for Southeast Technology Network 

Southeastern Regional Planning and Economic Development District, Taunton, Seekonk, North Attleboro, Fairhaven, Easton, Swansea, Somerset, Freetown, Dighton, Westport and Wareham

  • $76,800 for Southeast Fire Department Electronic Records and Permitting Collaborative

General Government Projects

Towns of East Bridgewater

  • $73,633 for Town-School Facilities Management and IT Consolidation 

Norfolk County, Plainville and Walpole

  • $200,000 for Regional Payroll Program 

Facilities Management Projects

Town of Hanover

  • $46,000 for Centralized Facility and Infrastructure Asset Maintenance System

Town of Middleborough

  • $28,210.60 for Consolidation of IT and Maintenance Services

Other Projects

Towns of Acton, Boxborough, Littleton, Maynard and Stow, Clock Tower Place Office Park in Maynard

  • $184,575 for Shared Transportation Resources among Five Municipalities and One Business in the Acton Region 

Town of Andover

  • $29,967 for Libraries as Part of Emergency Response Teams 

Norfolk County

  • $244,000 for Regionalized Veterans’ Services
  • $89,000 for Regional Services Coordinator
  • $237,000 for Regional Municipal Engineering Services


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