Region Roundup: Brown Water, 3 Arrested on Heroin Charges, Retiring Principal & More

A look at what is happening around the region this past week.

Foxborough Hikes Water & Sewer Rates Despite Brown Water Problems

Residents fed up with paying for poor water quality will find no silver lining in the Foxborough Water & Sewer Commissioners’ decision to hike water & sewer rates Monday.

That’s because the rate increases, which take effect immediately, will not bring any immediate relief to residents experiencing brown water in town. Instead, the newly approved hikes are said to be long overdue and necessary because the town’s enterprise account currently isn’t bringing in enough revenue to cover costs.

DPW Director Roger Hill said while the water and sewer rates vary based on use; the best indicator of cost for average homeowners and businesses is the minimum rate. For water, that rate was $53.52 per quarter year for 750 cubic feet (5,600 gallons) or less before Monday’s 6 percent increase. The new minimum water rate, according to Hill, will be $56.73 per quarter. For sewer, the rate was $53.82 per quarter year for 750 cubic feet (5,600 gallons) or less before Monday’s 7.5 percent increase. Hill says the new minimum sewer rate will be $57.86 per quarter.

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Walpole Police Arrest Three on Heroin Charges Weeks After Previous Charges Dropped

Two brothers were arrested on drug charges in Walpole last Thursday - less than two weeks after similar charges brought by Norwood Police against them were dismissed due to the mishandling of drug samples by state Department of Public Health chemist Annie Dookhan.

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Mansfield's Robinson Principal Kristenson Announces Retirement

Mansfield School superintendent Brenda Hodges and the entire School Committee said a heartfelt goodbye to retiring Robinson principal Kate Kristenson.

“It has been a privilege to work with professionals at both schools,” she said. “I would to send a special thank you to the parents for your support and trust.”

Kristenson has been working for the Mansfield school system for more than 35 years. She started her career in 1976 in a variety of different roles. She is retiring from her position as principal for the Robinson School, but has also been the principal for the Jordan Jackson school.

“Being part of the Mansfield school community has been very rewarding,” she said in a letter to the school committee. “I have strived to make a difference in a positive learning environment where excellence has been the goal.”

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Proposal Calls for Nearly 350 New Housing Units in Canton

A consultant's report regarding a newly-proposed housing development for 348 units in downtown Canton is expected to be completed by the end of February. The Canton Board of Selectmen will neither decline or oppose the proposal until they review the report. Details in the proposal include 64 town house units, 80 age-restricted units for residents aged 55 and older, and 204 apartments, according to Boston.com.

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Easton Resident Named as Division Chief in Attorney General’s Office

An Easton lawyer recently became a top ranking official in Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley's office.

George Zachos was recently named as one of Coakley's new Division Chiefs, according to a statement released Tuesday.

Zachos, who is a graduate of Boston College and Oklahoma College of Law was named as the Medicaid Fraud Division Chief, according to the statement. The Easton lawyer had previously served as a managing attorney of the AG’s Medicaid Fraud Division since 2007. He also has more than 17 years of litigation experience.

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Stoughton's William “Mo” Cowan Named State's Interim U.S. Senator

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick announced Wednesday morning that a Stoughton resident is headed to the Nation's Capital to represent Massachusetts in the U.S. Senate.

With Tuesday's official nomination of U.S. Senator John Kerry to the post of Secretary of State, the field is opening up with folks vying for Kerry's seat in his unexpired term in the U.S. Senate. But before that even happens an interim senator had to be named.

On Wednesday, Governor Patrick announced that his former chief of staff William “Mo” Cowan, 43, of Stoughton, will be the interim senator and will serve until a new senator is elected in the June 25 special election.

He lives in Stoughton with his wife, Stacy, and their two young sons, 8-year-old Miles and 4-year-old Grant.

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