Umass Amherst: The Entity That Be
In addition to the $50,000+ in spending for extra AFD and UMPD personnel over the next six weeks to deal with off campus rowdy weekend behavior, UMass is also proposing a long-term major study costing between $50,000 and $60,000 to analyze public safety and housing issues created by the presence of our #1 employer, and how potential remedies fit into their "Master Plan".
Town Manager John Musante will be requesting $25,000 to $30,000 from Amherst Town Meeting in matching funds for the joint town/gown study. The money could come from the town's "overlay account," a stash of cash set aside in case property owners appeal their assessment and win an abatement. Apparently the town has put aside more than needed.
Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy will make an appearance before Amherst Town Meeting this spring to champion the proposal. Since Swamy is intrepid enough to endure a night of Town Meeting perhaps -- to get a real introduction to the problems of off campus rowdyism -- he should do a ride along with APD any weekend over the next six weeks.
After all, Select Board Chair Stephanie O'Keeffe has done it as has Town Manager Musante and former UMass second in command Todd Diacon.