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If your parents lived in South Hadley when you were born, you may obtain your birth certificate at the Town Clerk’s office or at the:State Registry of Vital Records and Statistics150 Mount Vernon Street1st FloorDorchester, MA 02125-3105Phone: 617-740-2600
If your parents lived in another city or town at the time of your birth, with some exceptions, you may obtain your birth certificate from that city clerk’s office, or in the city or town in which you were actually born.
You can obtain a copy of a birth certificate from the Town Clerk’s office in three ways. By visiting Invoice Cloud to purchase certificates online, by physically entering the office located in Town Hall, or by mailing a request to the Town Clerk’s office. Click here for more information on ordering birth certificates.
You must file the application with the Assessor’s Office in the city or town that issued the bill.
You may request one from the Assessor’s office or you may download the form here.
Applications for abatement must be received by the Board of Assessors within 3 years after the excise was due, or 1 year after the excise is paid, whichever is later. To preserve your right to appeal, you must file on time.
When you file for an abatement, our office requires you to also file a “Boat status change form” for the Commonwealth and we also keep a copy on file in the office for our records.
Call the Senior Center at 413-538-5030 and make an appointment for a tour of the facility.
A Senior Center scan card is required to sign in. Please request a scan card at the welcome desk.
You must be 60 years of age or older to attend activities at the South Hadley Council on Aging. Some activities must be limited to members 60 years or older, due to funding agency regulations. A suggested donation may be required for some programs for members under the age of 60. An example would be our Congregate Meal lunch program.
No, you do not have to be South Hadley resident to attend the Congregate Lunch Program. Anonymous, suggested donation is $2.25 for 60 or older, guests under 60 are charged $6.50 per Federal Regulations. Title III-C Congregate Meal Site program provided by WestMass ElderCare through funding from the Executive Offce of Elder Affairs. For questions about meals, please call the Nutrition Department at 413-538-9020.
Call 413-538-5030, 1 day ahead and give your name. One must be 60 or over and the only exceptions to the age requirements are if 1 is a volunteer or a guest of a senior.
Call 413-538-5030 and state your destination. If the ride is available, your name, address and phone number will be requested. However, if you are requesting a service not provided by the South Hadley Council on Aging, a referral will be made.
If you are 60 or over and a resident of South Hadley, you should be receiving “The Golden Chronicle” monthly. There is no charge for this publication and mailing is covered through funding from grants, the town, and generous donations. If you would like to recieve the newsletter via email or through the mail please email Lisa Napiorkowski or call the Senior Center at 413-538-5030. We encourage residents to make a $5 per year donation to help cover mailing costs. Out-of-town residents may receive the publication for a fee of $10 per year.
The death certificate is on file in South Hadley if:
You can obtain a copy of a death certificate from the Town Clerk’s office in three ways. By visiting Invoice Cloud to purchase certificates online, by physically entering the office located in Town Hall, or by mailing a request to the Town Clerk’s office. Click here for more information on obtaining death certificates.
The Town Clerk’s office does not process burial permits. For information on burial permits contact the South Hadley Board of Health at 413-538-5030, ext. 6184.
View our table to see which situation best fits you and your dog.
You can register your dog online through Viewpermit. You will need a credit card and there is a 2.2$ + .30 cent charge per transaction. Click here to create an account.
You may license your dog by mail by sending the appropriate fee with a copy of the current rabies certificate from your veterinarian. Please send a self-addressed stamped envelope and we will send you your dog’s license.
A service dog is defined under the American’s with Disabilities Act (ADA) as a dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. The work or task performed by a service animal must be directly related to a handler’s disability. A dog whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support does not qualify as a service animal.
The Annual Town Election is held the 2nd Tuesday in April each year, per the Town's bylaws.
You can register to vote at the Town Clerk's office located in room 108 at the Town Hall, or online through the Secretary of Commonwealth’s website.
All elections are held at the South Hadley High School located at 153 Newton Street.
South Hadley has five precincts, A through E. All precincts vote at the South Hadley High School located at 153 Newton Street.
For information about all districts: https://www.sec.state.ma.us/ele/eledist/distidx.htm
The Falls area of town was a center of early industrialization along the Connecticut River. Later on it became the location of several industrial mills. With the mills came prosperity for the Falls, and housing for the mill workers, managers, and owners. While the mills are gone, some of the historic housing still remains. Falls residents should rightly be proud of this visual history, not just because of its historic value, but also because it creates pride in the community and stabilizes the value of all properties in the Falls.
After the Selectboard learned that there was some interest in creating a local historic district in the Falls, it appointed a study group to investigate the idea of establishing a local historic district designation. The study group is largely made of people who live in or once lived in the Falls. All members of the study group are deeply interested preserving the unique character of the Falls.
While several areas in the Falls are of historic significance, the study group is suggesting that it is best to start with a small historic district. We are proposing to designate the Old Firehouse Museum, Cordes Court, and North Main Street from about Carew Street up to the rotary, as an historic district. We are very much interested in your opinions about this.
The Historic Districts Act (Massachusetts General Law, Chapter 40C) provides a specific procedure for the establishment of local historic districts in Massachusetts. This process must be followed for a local historic district to be valid. The study group would suggest the approximate boundaries of the proposed local historic district. Then it would survey owners in the proposed district for their opinions about the value of such a district. The study group would want to invite property owners to neighborhood meetings to discuss the proposed local historic district. If there is sufficient interest in proceeding further, the study group would gather data on the historic homes in the proposed district and prepare a Preliminary Study Report for submission to the Town Planning Board and to the Massachusetts Historical Commission (MHC) for their consideration and recommendations. The next step would be a public hearing on the issue, at which the language of a bylaw could be discussed. The bylaw would delineate the boundaries of the historic district and also establish a historic district commission. After the public hearing, the study committee would prepare a final report that incorporated the comments and recommendations from the Planning Board, the MHC, and the community and submit it to the Selectboard for its consideration, with a request to get it on the warrant for Town Meeting. Approval would require a two-thirds majority.
The wording of the bylaw would describe specifically how the Selectboard would make appointees to the Historic District Commission. In other communities in Massachusetts, the historic district commission consists of members such as architects, realtors, and property owners of the district. But we are at liberty to set up a commission in any way that homeowners in the proposed district would want.
No, you can maintain the current look of your house as long as you would like. A local historic district commission only reviews proposed changes to exterior architectural features. Routine maintenance of your house is exempt from review.
Exterior architectural features visible from a public way would be reviewed. Interior changes, landscaping, maintenance and exterior features not visible from a public way are not reviewed. Other exemptions can also be included in the bylaw. The bylaw creating the district may also exclude certain categories from review; most frequently these are paint color, storm windows and doors, and window air conditioning units. The purpose of a local historic district is not to halt growth, but to allow for thoughtful consideration of change. The intent is to make changes and additions harmonious, and prevent the intrusion of incongruous elements that might detract from the aesthetic and historic values of the district. Again, historic district commissions are only allowed to review changes to exterior architectural features visible from a public way.
While some local historic districts in Massachusetts do include paint color review, we are recommending NOT including any paint color review.
Before acquiring the building permit for your addition, you would fill out an application to the Historic District Commission. The Commission would hold a public hearing and review the proposed plans to make sure that they are appropriate changes to the historic district. If the addition were appropriate, the district commission would issue a certificate. You would then present the Certificate to the Building Inspector to get your building permit. If the addition were not found appropriate, then the Commission would explain to you how the project could be improved.
While it is true that an additional step is needed for some projects, the benefits of protecting the rich architectural heritage found in the historic district area outweigh this added step. The proposed historic district contains buildings 100 and even 200 years old. Without a local historic district, these gems that have lasted so long could be demolished or irreparably altered tomorrow.
No one can predict the future but studies around the country suggest that property values stay the same or increase faster in local historic districts compared to similar, non-designated areas.
The establishment of a district will actually protect your property. In older neighborhoods of historic character where homeowners are of modest means, there is always a danger that new property owners will not appreciate the need for historic preservation of an area. By having a local historic district, you can be assured that a NEW property owner across the street from your house will also maintain the historic character of the neighborhood.
Simply type Establishing Local Historic Districts into your computer browser search engine. The Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth has made this information available online as a PDF document.
First determine if there is a liquor license available. The Town of South Hadley has three "General on Premise" Beer & Wine licenses available, as of Jan. 26, 2022. See more info, here: https://www.southhadley.org/922/Permits-Licenses
One-Day Beer & Wine licenses are obtained online via ViewPermit. One you’ve completed an online application, the town receives a notification and submits your application to be reviewed by the Selectboard.As the local licensing authority, the Selectboard must approve the license. This occurs during Selectboard meetings. The Selectboard meets on the first and third Tuesday of each month, unless otherwise noted.You will be notified through ViewPermit of your application’s approval status following the Selectboard meeting at which it was reviewed. If approved, your license is available to print via ViewPermit.Please note: An organization is allowed no more than 30 One-Day Beer & Wine licenses per calendar year.
One-Day Beer & Wine licenses are obtained online via ViewPointCloud. Licenses must be applied for AT LEAST two weeks before the date of your event. Applications submitted less than that will not be reviewed by the Selectboard. One you’ve completed an online application, the town receives a notification and submits your application to be reviewed by the Selectboard.
As the local licensing authority, the Selectboard must approve the license. This occurs during Selectboard meetings. The Selectboard meets on the first and third Tuesday of each month, unless otherwise noted.
You will be notified through ViewPointCloud of your application’s approval status following the Selectboard meeting at which it was reviewed. If approved, your license is available to print via ViewPointCloud.
Please note: An organization is allowed no more than 30 One-Day Beer & Wine licenses per calendar year.
The South Hadley Selectboard hereby establishes the following rules and regulations for any establishment serving alcoholic beverages in accordance with Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 138.
The Town of South Hadley has three "General on Premise" Beer & Wine licenses available, as of Jan. 26, 2022. See more info, here: https://www.southhadley.org/922/Permits-Licenses
New and transferred licenses for alcoholic beverages, as well as changes to management or the business, require the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission (ABCC) application, a public hearing with the South Hadley Selectboard, and a newspaper advertisement and abutter notification alerting the public to the Selectboard hearing. Both of these notifications must be published and mailed at least 10 days prior to the hearing. The Selectboard will hold a hearing on the application, and if accepted the application will be sent to the ABCC for final approval. Applications are available only at the Massachusetts Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission website: https://www.mass.gov/orgs/alcoholic-beverages-control-commission. We highly suggest you consult with legal counsel during the application process. Our office cannot assist in filling out the ABCC application or answering specific questions. To schedule a public hearing with the Selectboard, first fill out an ABCC application, and email email@example.com with your hearing request. After a hearing date is confirmed, it is the applicant’s responsibility to put a legal advertisement in a local newspaper and to notify the abutters of the hearing. Please contact the Assessors’ Office for an official abutters list. The completed application must be submitted to the Selectboard Office at least two weeks prior to the hearing. The ABCC will only accept typed applications. To schedule a hearing or for additional information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Assessors have historically warned visitors to their offices that the tax maps are not property line plans. They are an inventory of all the ownerships of land within their municipality and they approximate the geometric size and shapes of individual parcels. Compiled from recorded individual subdivisions and plans of land, the maps are a composite index of a municipality’s land records. No certification of the accuracy of the assessor’s parcel lines is ever conveyed. On January 31, 1972, Attorney General Robert H. Quinn wrote a legal opinion regarding assessor’s maps, “…the purpose of the maps is only to sufficiently describe the property in question in order to provide effective notice of which property is being taxed.” John A. Hammer, III Mass Assn. of Land surveyors & Civil Engineers, Inc.
Yes, maps are available in the office as well as electronically. For electronic versions you can go to our Digital Mapping Program.
Assessor maps can be retrieved at no cost through our Digital Mapping Program.
Assuming the license was issued by the Town of South Hadley Clerk’s Office, there are three ways to obtain a certified copy. By visiting Invoice Cloud to purchase certificates online, by physically entering the office located in Town Hall, or by mailing a request to the Town Clerk’s office.
-Your vehicle is valued for more than percentage of manufacturer's list price in the schedule established by G.L. Ch. 60A §1.
-Your vehicle is exempt from the excise under G.L. Ch. 60A §1.
-You sell, trade or otherwise transfer ownership of the vehicle, and transfer or cancel your registration, during the same calendar year.
-You move to another state, register the vehicle there, and cancel or not renew your Massachusetts registration during the same calendar year.
-Your vehicle is stolen, you report the theft to the police within 48 hours, and you cancel your registration and obtain a certificate from Registrar at least 30 days after theft.
-You register the same vehicle again later in the same calendar year.
-You are not entitled to an abatement if you (1) cancel your registration and retain ownership of the vehicle, or (2) move to another Massachusetts city or town, during the same calendar year.
No excise may be reduced to less than $5. No abatement of less than $5 will be made.
Therefore, if your bill is less than $10, no abatement can be issued for the above.
- Vehicle sold or traded: bill of sale (or name and address of purchaser) and proof of cancellation (plate return receipt or lost plate affidavit (form C-19) from the Registry of Motor Vehicles) or new registration if plates transferred to another vehicle.
- Moved from Massachusetts: copy of MA plate return receipt and a copy of the new state registration.
- Vehicle stolen or totaled: police report or insurance company settlement letter (not the incident date) and proof of cancellation or transfer of registration.
- Moved to another city / town: copy of insurance coverage selections page showing the place of garaging as of January 1 of the taxing year or as of the date of registration of the vehicle.
- Blind- Handicapped- Veteran’s (POWs / non domiciliary servicemen)
Please contact our office for details regarding these exemptions, as requirements vary.
You must file the application with the Assessor’s Office. Applications can be found here.
You can request one from the Assessor’s Office or you may download the form here.
If you are unable to find the information you need in your online payment history or open invoices, please call your biller’s office at 413-538-5030, ext. 6189.
Your application must be filed with the board of assessors on or before the date the first installment payment of the actual tax bill mailed for the fiscal year is due, unless you are a mortgagee. If so, your application must be filed between September 20 and October 1. Actual tax bills are those issued after the tax rate is set. You must file by the due date of your 3rd quarter actual tax bill. The due date is typically February 1.
You may request applications be mailed from the Assessor’s Office or you may download them here.
However, persons that receive an abatement and the amount granted is public information.
You should provide any information that supports your case.
A list of the personal property tax roll is available with the Assessor’s Office.
The Planning Board Office is the best location to find that information since they have a digital map which allows them to locate the parcel by map and parcel number and determine if the property is in more than 1 zoning district. Find more information by clicking the following link: https://ecode360.com/30052807
This is determined by the Zoning District in which the property is located. For more information, please visit: https://ecode360.com/30052807
This process is governed by Massachusetts General Law, Chapter 40A. Since South Hadley has a representative town meeting form of government, the town follows specific process, which is detailed below:
The Zoning Bylaw, Subdivision Regulations and the stormwater management bylaw are located in Ecode linked here: https://ecode360.com/SO1428
The Building Commissioner / Inspector is the Zoning Enforcement Officer. You should contact their office and detail the alleged violation. They can tell you if in fact what you describe is a violation, in their opinion. You should follow up with a written complaint if you believe the violation is continuing.
Variances are subject to very specific hardship criteria in Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 40A and are difficult to obtain. Variances and administrative appeals are under the authority of the Zoning Board of Appeals. The Planning Board Office merely acts as the processing agent for the Zoning Board of Appeals.
The steps for applying for a variance or an administrative appeal are detailed on this page here: https://www.southhadley.org/343/Zoning-Board-of-Appeals
You can either call the Assessor’s Office with the property location or owner’s name or you may self retrieve this information from our Digital Mapping Program.
Mass appraisal is defined as the use of standardized procedures for collecting dataand appraising property to ensure that all properties within a municipality arevalued uniformly and equitably. It is the process of valuing a group of propertiesas of a given date, using common data, employing standardized methods andconducting statistical tests to ensure uniformity and equity in the valuations.Assessors use mass appraisal procedures and techniques when determining thefair cash value of properties in their municipalities.
The assessment date is January 1 for the upcoming fiscal year. New construction (i.e. new homes, additions, sheds, decks, etc.) and demolitions are assessed as of July 1. (For example January 1, 2021 is the assessment date for fiscal 2022 valuations other than additions or demolitions that occurred until June 30, 2021. Fiscal 2022 runs from July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022.)
Yes. The Assessors Office lists a book and page reference on the property record card for most of the properties. Deed references (book and page numbers) are recorded at the Hampshire County Registry of Deeds. You can contact the Registry of Deeds located at 60 Railroad Avenue, Northampton, MA. 01060 at 413-584-3637.
Yes, you can find this information by calling our office or looking on the Registry of Deeds website. Please keep in mind that the Assessors office is typically a week or so behind the Registry of Deeds information.
Applications & Forms Page
The current tax rates as well as historical tax rate information can be found here.
If a property is sold, when will the bill reflect the new ownership? As stated above the bills are shown with the record owner as of January 1. Therefore, any transfer between January 2 and December 31 will be reflected on the tax bills with a care of (c/o) until the following July 1. However, if someone contacts our office for the current ownership, the new owner information will be provided.
Registration is available for all programs online through our registration site, Blue sombrero. Registrations are not accepted in office. Payment can be paid at the time of registration with Visa or MasterCard or a check can be mailed to the Recreation Office after the online registration is completed.
Financial aid is available for youth sports and is based upon your school lunch qualification. Students that receive free school lunch are eligible for a 100% fee waiver and students that receive half lunch are responsible to pay 50% of the registration fee. If you do not meet the school lunch qualification and have a need for financial assistance, you can request financial help. Fees are not waived for bus trips, adult sports leagues and adult fitness classes. You can fill out the financial waiver form below.
Recreation Department activities are publicized in the Town Reminder, Hampshire Gazette, the Republican, registration page, Facebook page, Channel 15 and in the school newsletters.
Anybody that wants to volunteer for the Recreation Department should indicate that on the registration form. If you are looking to volunteer and do not have a child playing you can email email@example.com with your name, phone number, address, qualifications, etc. All volunteers that work with children must complete a CORI check and may be interviewed for certain activities.
The Recreation Department is always looking for donations or sponsorships to help with its programs or facilities. If you are interested in making a donation or becoming a sponsor contact the Recreation Department at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Recreation Department’s cancellation hotline is 413-538-5030 ext. 6188. When programs are cancelled due to inclement weather, their status will be listed at that number. If a coach decides to cancel a game or practice when the weather is questionable on their own, they will contact team members directly. Additionally, certain sport groups have their own websites where they will announce any cancellations.
The Recreation Commission is a 9-member group that is appointed by the Selectboard. Each Commissioner serves a 3-year term and their primary functions are to oversee the Recreation Department, to create policy, and to select what programs to offer. If you are interested in serving on the Recreation Commission, contact the Recreation Director or apply to the Selectboard when an opening is advertised.
If you are interested in starting a new program or have an idea, please submit that idea in writing to the Recreation Department at email@example.com. The Recreation Director and Commission will look into the feasibility of that program. Key factors include need, how many people will register for the program, cost, where can the program be held and how will it be supervised.
You can book a pavilion at Buttery Brook Park by filling out the form at www.southhadleyrecreation.org
In 2007-2009, the South Hadley master-planning process identified five core initiatives during its robust public engagement process. The number one core initiative was the revitalization of South Hadley Falls. Town Meeting Members subsequently adopted and endorsed the Master Plan in 2010, including the commitment to revitalize South Hadley Falls. In 2012, at the Town’s request, the American Institute of Architect’s Sustainable Design Assistance Team (SDAT) visited South Hadley Falls and met with South Hadley residents. The SDAT then provided a compelling vision for the area.
While there are other parts of town in need redevelopment, only the South Hadley Falls area meets the Commonwealth’s narrow criteria for the establishment of a targeted redevelopment area under the direction of a redevelopment authority. Those criteria include the proportion of vacant lots, empty stores, and properties with deferred maintenance issues. But that does not mean that Town officials are uninterested in redevelopment in other parts of the community. The Selectboard, Town Administrator, Planning Director and Planning Board, as well as the Redevelopment Authority Chair, are all actively engaged in redeveloping other parts of South Hadley.
See question 1 for background. The SDAT vision motivated South Hadley Town Meeting to create the South Hadley Rede¬velopment Authority (SHRA), in 2014. The SDAT vision has provided the framework for the South Had¬ley Falls Urban Redevelopment and Renewal Plan. The plan provides an implementation strategy for the Town to realize that vision, by targeting specific buildings, lots and areas in which to concentrate public and private investment.
A portion of this plan is devoted to the improvement of housing opportunities in South Hadley Falls. Residents of rental units have limited options within the area as they look to purchase a home or upgrade to other units. The plan recommends filling some of the vacant lots in neighborhoods with housing options for a mix of incomes in both ownership and rental units.
Although the target of this plan is South Hadley Falls, its benefits will be felt throughout the community. As redevelopment proceeds, the property tax base will increase, new businesses will be able to start and expand, more services can be offered, and the South Hadley Falls area will become a more attractive place in which to live, work and visit.
South Hadley’s urban renewal plan is simply a road map for the revitalization of South Hadley Falls. The plan aims to satisfy the requirements of a Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development approved Urban Renewal Plan (See Question 6: What does an Urban Renewal Plan look like?). It targets a specific area of South Hadley and its goal is to promote a vibrant, diverse and economically sustainable South Hadley Falls.
See question 1 for background. The plan was developed based on findings from the South Hadley Master Plan and the SDAT vision for South Hadley Falls. The SDAT visit included a “visioning process” whereby concurrent workshops were held in Town Hall. At that event, members of the public were asked to provide their desires for the South Hadley Falls neighborhood. The vision was then developed, with recommendations and goals to strive for in any urban renewal plan for South Hadley Falls. Soon after it was formed, the South Hadley Redevelopment Authority (SHRA) engaged the services of an expert and experienced consultant group, McCabe Enterprises, to aid it in the production of a redevelopment plan. The SHRA then formed a citizen’s advisory board, in order to obtain direction from the public as it moved forward on forming the redevelopment plan. It has met with that group four times. The SHRA has held scheduled public meetings from 2014 to the present to discuss actions related to the plan. We have met and discussed the plan several times, as it has been developed, with our Planning Board and our Selectboard. Members of the RA have attended monthly meetings of the South Hadley Falls Neighborhood Association to provide information and updates, and conducted surveys of residents and businesses in South Hadley Falls as part of the development of the plan.
As a result the advice given to us by our consultant, our advisory group, and boards and committees, we are focusing on Main Street, beginning at our new library and going southward down Main to the intersection of Main and Bridge. The Main/Bridge intersection is the gateway across the Memorial Bridge from Holyoke into South Hadley Falls and South Hadley proper. The proposed redevelopment area in this direction extends a bit further down Main to just beyond the Town Hall. In the east-west direction, we are concentrating on an area that is bounded by Main Street on the east, and bounded on the north and south by Gaylord and Bridge Streets respectively. These streets run eastward from Main and roughly parallel to each other before they both reach the eastern boundary of the redevelopment area on Lamb Street, which is running roughly north/south.
Most of the Redevelopment Authorities operating in Massachusetts were originally created to take advantage of the federal Urban Renewal Program, serving as vehicles for carrying out the federal mandate to eliminate blight from inner cities. Although the federal program no longer exists, Redevelopment Authorities continue to play a role in the Commonwealth’s revitalization under C.121B.
M.G.L. Chapter 121B allows municipalities, through their Redevelopment Authorities acting as urban renewal agencies, to eliminate and redevelop substandard, decadent or blighted open areas for industrial, commercial, business, residential, recreational, educational, hospital or other purposes. With the goals of revitalizing such land uses and encouraging new growth, Redevelopment Authorities have the power to:
Redevelopment Authorities are particularly effective in large scale and complex redevelopment projects and in land assembly. Redevelopment Authorities are exempt from M.G.L. Chapter 30(b), the Uniform Procurement Act, when they are engaged in the development and disposition of real property in accordance with an urban renewal plan. This exemption, coupled with the ability to use eminent domain powers, makes Redevelopment Authorities powerful tools for commercial revitalization, industrial park development, infrastructure improvements, facilities renovation and brownfield site remediation. The development and approval of an urban renewal plan is necessary for a Redevelopment Authority to undertake specific projects. A Redevelopment Authority, as an independent body politic and corporate, is not an agency of a municipality and therefore, does not answer directly to the chief executive. This affords the Redevelopment Authority more autonomy in planning and implementing redevelopment and revitalization projects.
An Urban Renewal Plan is an application submitted by a municipality through its urban renewal agency (like the South Hadley Redevelopment Authority) to the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) requesting its approval of a redevelopment project. The Urban Renewal Plan must include the following information as specified under Massachusetts Regulations 760 CMR 12.00:
Recommended actions include improving sidewalks, adding crosswalks, traffic calming enhancements, benches, and streetscapes. The area of concentration for these infrastructure improvements would be Main Street, running from the new library down past and including the Bridge and Main intersection, and extending past Town Hall to the Beach ground Park. Other recommended actions include improvements to the park at the Old Firehouse Museum, improving access to the riverfront, adding bike and walking paths in the area, consolidating properties at the northeast corner of Bridge and Main, and also day lighting that part of Buttery Brook running through the redevelopment plan target area. We also intend to make improvements to the public parking lot on Main Street.
This plan identifies parcels and properties that may be acquired in order to stimulate private investment. For example, the SHELD property will be acquired at no cost to the Town when SHELD moves to another location, elsewhere in South Hadley Falls. Some acquisitions may result in demolition or cleanup of the properties, in order to make the properties site-ready or shovel-ready for redevelopment and construction.
Parcel acquisition, including eminent domain, is a last resort option. The properties listed for acquisition in the plan have generally not seen a high level of interest from the private sector due to their size and/or the cost associated with redevelopment. Many of these properties are either in poor condition, contaminated, too small in size for new construction, have limited access or have other characteristics that are cost prohibitive for a private entity to see a return on investment. With these problems seen throughout the South Hadley Falls, the SHRA will step in and incur some of the cost of redevelopment, in turn creating a market for these properties once again. It is important to point out that none of the properties to be considered for acquisition in the plan is residential.
The active businesses recommended for possible acquisition were selected in order to change the type of land use of the parcel and/or as a critical step to do parcel aggregation for a public benefit project. The SHRA will attempt to acquire all privately owned properties by negotiated purchase. Eminent domain is a last-resort tool that urban renewal agencies, such as the SHRA, have to acquire private property to undertake a necessary project for public benefit. Private property owners must be compensated at fair market value for their property as well as for relocation expenses associated with any taking. The SHRA will make best efforts to reach an out-of-court settlement agreement with private property owners for their properties in return for a financial benefit package.
Yes. Any significant amendments need approval of Town Meeting and the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). For example, if a property that was not identified in the plan were to be added for possible acquisition, the plan would need to be amended and approved by Town Meeting and the DHCD.
The URP’s purpose is to spur private investment by targeting the areas and properties that can be a catalyst through public assistance. Targeting the properties with the highest need and potential will therefore increase private development in and around those properties.
As a requirement of MGL 121B, the Urban Renewal Plan must identify funding sources for every action. Since the SHRA does not currently possess funds, seed funding will be sought through grants, Town allocation, parcel transfers from the town to the SHRA or a mix or all options. As the SHRA gains funds from completing projects, any revenue received will be used on future projects in the plan. It is important to note that the plan, while it includes a tentative budget, is not a Town budgetary document. Town Meeting approval of the plan does not commit the Town to funding any part of it. Any subsequent requests for Town funding will be subject to approval by the appropriate committees and by Town Meeting Members.
The plan does not affect any residential properties. If a commercial property is on the possible acquisition list, the plan has certain recommendations for the redevelopment of that property. If a private owner wishes to invest in that property in a manner that is consistent with those recommendations, the SHRA would not seek to acquire such property. If a property is in the redevelopment area but is not included in the possible acquisition list, the SHRA cannot acquire such property.
The plan actions will be taken throughout the next 20 years. Goals have been set for short, mid and long-term within that time. Prioritization of actions was based on thoughtful analysis performed by the SHRA and a paid consultant, in consultation with Town officials. Although the goals for the plan were set, the timing will depend on many factors including but not limited to, availability of funding, private investment, and changing circumstances. As the plan is implemented, goals will constantly be evaluated based on cost of the action and potential revenue leveraged by the action. For example:
The SHRA will continue to meet on a regular basis. Meetings are open to the public and are posted. Check the Town Calendar for meeting postings, agendas and minutes.
No. A Master Plan is a comprehensive plan for a city or town at large and is intended to guide the municipality’s actions over the next decades. The recommendations in the Master Plan are broader than those of an urban renewal plan. An urban renewal plan is a physical plan for a specified area within the community. The urban renewal plan is primarily for the Redevelopment Authority and guides actions with the goal of creating an attractive environment for private investment resulting in a more vibrant community, in which citizens can live, work, and visit. Those actions include property acquisition, infrastructure and streetscape improvements and opportunities for partnerships with other entities engaging in actions that complement the plan.
A list of properties for acquisition can be found in the urban renewal plan.
A revaluation is an update of all assessments within the community conducted by the Board of Assessors under the direction of the Department of Revenue. The assessors of each community are responsible for developing a reasonable and realistic program to achieve the fair cash valuation of property in accordance with constitutional and statutory requirements. The nature and extent of that program will depend on the assessor's analysis and consideration of many factors including but not limited to, the results of an in-depth sales ratio study and the accuracy of existing property record information. Every 5 years the assessors must submit property values to the Department of Revenue for review and certification.
State law requires that all property in the town be assessed within 10% of market value every 5 years. This is based on all sales not individual sales - (mass appraisal).
Assessors use mass appraisal procedures and techniques when determining thefair cash value of properties in their municipalities.
Learn when the meetings are and the process to follow before you appear before the Selectboard. Email firstname.lastname@example.org. Meetings are the first and third Tuesday of every month, unless otherwise noted.
Burning permits can be obtained at fire district 1 or 2, depending on where you live.
Click here: https://www.southhadley.org/jobs
Parking tickets are processed in the Treasurer/Collector's Office. Find more information, and how to appeal parking tickets, here.
You can find your collection route number by street name here
You can contact DPW directly at (413) 538-5033 or fill out a missed collection report here. Please review the curbside regulations here before reporting.
The 2020 curbside collection schedule can be viewed here.
This service, initially implemented at the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic, is no longer available.
The sticker application can be viewed here