Senate passes legislation to establish Wareham Redevelopment Authority

Jan 5, 2018

Legislation is working its way through the Massachusetts Senate and House that would give Wareham greater authority in its economic future.

On Jan. 5, the state senate passed a bill that would establish a redevelopment authority in town. The bill now goes to the House of Representatives for consideration. Under state law, redevelopment authorities may rehabilitate blighted areas for industrial, commercial, residential, recreational and other uses.

Authorities also give loans to businesses looking to open in town, provided they meet certain criteria.

In Wareham, those tasks were handled by the Community & Economic Development Authority (CEDA). In April 2017, that board was dissolved.

Community & Economic Development Director Kenneth Buckland said the redevelopment authority will fill the role once occupied by CEDA.

“If there’s a start up business that needs some assistance, and it promises jobs and taxes, then we can apply funds allocated to the redevelopment authority,” said Buckland.

Once approved, the authority would be managed by a five member board consisting of: two Selectmen, the town administrator or his designee, Buckland and a registered voter.