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Byrne send-off echoes through generations

Steve Byrne in his chair, Feb. 5, 2018Former Selectman Steve Byrne sits in new chair, as Diane Mahon listens.

When Steven M. Byrne sat proudly in the laser-engraved maple chair, some audience members reflected that pride -- and a sense of history about what the family has meant to Town Hall.

One was his father, Michael, town director of inspectional services. Another was his brother, Jon Henry, who graduated from college last May.

The chair, a gift bought from Standard Chair of Gardner Inc., honored Byrne's nearly six years as a selectmen.

Speaking at the microphone Monday, Feb. 5, the former selectmen said it had been "a pleasure to give something back," and he made reference to playing his part for generations of Arlington Byrnes.

His grandfather was Donald Byrne, who was plumbing inspector from 1964 to 1993. His father, Michael, was hired as the plumbing inspector in 1993, when Donald retired, and subsequently became building inspector in 2001.

His great-grandfather retired in 1964, having worked for the town since the late 1930s.

John Byrne, his great-uncle, was the town assessor for more than 30 years. Leo, another great-uncle, was a local inspector in the town for more than 30 years. Joe, still another great-uncle, worked for the Housing Authority for more than 30 years, according to information provided by Marie Krepelka, selectmen's administrator.

Selectmen Chairman Joseph A. Curro Jr. noted that Byrne and he were elected to the board in the same year, 2012. and that until he resigned in December, Byrne voted alone on some issues.

Board comments

Byrne said he found it "nerve-racking being on this side," instead of on the board.

Member Kevin Greeley noted that Steve's dad and he have long been friends and that he knew the former selectman when Steve was a college student. He said learned from Steve "how to be a better man."

Board of Selectmen logo, Jan. 23, 2013

Member Diane Mahon recalled Steve's grandfather and noited that Steve had married a cheerleader she had coached.

Member Dan Dunn praised his work as part of the group deciding community-preservation grants.

This part of the selectmen's agenda ended in applause.

Byrne stepped down, citing workload from his day job, vice president at Beacon Strategies Group, a lobbying firm, and the impact on his recent marriage.

Other actions

In other business, selectmen approved the following:

Reappointment: Veteran's Council, Jeff Melton (term to expire 1/31/2021)

Request: Special (One Day) Beer & Wine License, 2/17/2018 @ Robbins Library for a Private Event, Vicki Lee Boyajian, Inc.

Request: Contractor/Drainlayer License, New England Drilling & Rock Splitting Corp., Concord, MA


Arlington Bicycle Advisory Committee, Executive Board (term to expire 1/31/2021), Adam MacNeill 


For Approval: Food Vendor License, Arlington Café, 475 Summer St., Sameh Henein 


Request to Park Food Truck in Front of Town Hall for Echofest, Saturday, March 24, Charlotte Milan, Recycling Coordinator, EcoFest Organizing Committee 

Application to Waze Connected Citizens Program   Adam W. Chapdelaine, Town Manager.

Mahon praised Assistant Town Manager Jim Feeney for working with Waze, a company that provides GPS-enabled traffic routing. In a Feb. 1 memo, he wrote, in part he wrote, in part: "The program operates to benefit all parties .... [including] town personnel proactively inputting road construction and closure data, as well as detours caused by town events ...."

The board voted to participate in the data exchange. 


Request "15 Minute Parking" at Broadway and Franklin Street, Emily Hammond, Ready, Set, Kids! This request was referred to the town manager for consideration.

This news report was published Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018.

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