There was a brief, yet important meeting inside Mayor Joseph Polisena’s Executive Chamber inside Johnston Town Hall Monday morning.
Beverly Williams, a one-time member of the Johnston Police Department, was officially sworn in as a member of the town’s Planning Board.
So read the official Certificate of Oath, which was signed by Polisena and featured the Town Seal: “This is to certify that Beverly Williams was duly appointed to the Jonston Planning Board on June 4, 2018 and personally appeared and made solemn oath to be true and faithful unto this town, and support the laws and ordinances hereof as well the laws and Constitution of the State of Rhode Island and of the United States of America; and will well and truly execute the office of JPB for the term ending on April 30, 2021 or until another is engaged in his/her place, or be legally discharge there from.”
Vincent P. Baccari Jr., the Town of Johnston’s long-serving Town Clerk, witnessed Monday morning’s ceremony.
“Thanks you Mayor Polisena,” Williams said immediately after she accepted well wishes from the Mayor and Baccari. “I’m really looking forward to being a member of the Planning Board.”
Polisena, in fact, is more than happy Williams has accepted the appointment to what he called “a body of our government that is an integral part of economic development here in Johnston.”
“We’re really happy to have Bev on board,” Polisena said. “Remember, the Planning Board also has an effect on jobs and our overall economic development programs.”
To which Williams added: “It’s exciting to see so much building going on in town; and I know we’re not even halfway finished. I’m proud to become a member of an important body in town.”
Polisena has said in recent weeks, “our great economic development is the reason why we won’t have a tax increase for the third year in a town. We’ve got all sorts of projects on the drawing boards … a variety new businesses relocating in town, a hotel …”
There was also a special side to Polisena appointing Williams to the position on the even-member planning board.
Williams, who has lived in Johnston since 1975 and served as a JPD patrol officer for five years, doubles as president of the Aime J. Forand Housing Complex Tenants Association which, during her tenure, has ranked as one of the most active non-profits of its kind in Northern Rhode Island.
The tenants group is well known for its on-going bingo games, special holiday functions like Friday’s Italian Night that will include a variety of foods and entertainment. Moreover, as members will readily attest, the Forand Tenants Association is also well-versed in obtaining valuable RI State Legislative Grants that also enhance the quality of living for its members.
The Johnston Planning Board now includes John Laurito, Chairman; Joseph Lembo, Vice Chairman; Peggy Passarelli, Secretary; Members Christine Cunneen, Sindye Tonole, George Lazzareschi and Beverly Williams. Attorney: Joseph Ballirano, Esq.
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Beverly “Bev” Williams, a former Johnston Police patrol officer and president of the Aime J. Forand Housing Complex Tenants Association, is sworn by Mayor Joseph Polisena and the newest member of the town’s planning board Monday inside Town Hall. (Sun Rise photo by Pete Fontaine)