HARVARD -- Selectmen were told Tuesday of an issue at Bare Hill Pond that could result in closing the Town Beach to swimming for a while.

A noticeable number of dead fish have been found floating in the pond, washing up on the beach and at several locations along the shoreline, Town Administrator Tim Bragan said. The Parks and Recreation Commission and the Pond Committee are working together to investigate the cause.

The town's health agent, Ira Grossman, was called in to take water samples that were sent out for testing, Bragan said, and Park and Rec might close the beach to swimming until they find out what's causing the problem.

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Another issue Bragan brought up could be almost as difficult to solve. That is, how to continue airing live broadcasts of selectmen's meetings on the town's public access cable TV channel once Town Hall moves to its temporary location in the Appleworks Building on Ayer Road while Town Hall is renovated.

Discussing ideas, the selectmen posited that the simplest solution might be to hold the meetings at Volunteer's Hall, which is set up for live broadcasts. Cameras currently installed in the Town Hall meeting room are not making the move but rather are to be "repurposed" on site, Bragan said.

Bragan said he'd spoken to the library director about the Volunteer's Hall option.

Chairman Marie Sobalvarro noted that the library closes at nine o'clock on Tuesday nights, which could be a factor to consider.


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She suggested that a one-day delay in the broadcast would allow videotaping the meetings versus airing them live.

But Selectman Ron Ricci pointed out that it shouldn't be a problem to use Volunteer's Hall.

When the library project was conceived and the hall was renovated, part of the plan was to have a "direct access" public meeting space there, he said. Selectmen and those who attend the meeting would use the alternate access door rather than the main entrance, which would be less disruptive to library patrons anyway, he said. Then, when the meeting concludes, the selectmen would be responsible for locking up.

The board didn't make a decision on the matter, but it clearly will be discussed again before the move in August.