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Volunteer Opportunities
Commission on Disabilities (2 vacancies)
The Needham Commission on Disabilities consists of nine volunteer members appointed by the Board of Selectmen to address the needs and concerns of residents with disabilities. Monthly meetings are held the third Tuesday of each month at 5:30 p.m. (excluding July, August and December) at the Needham Public Library Community Room. The general purpose of the Commission is to: (a) advise municipal officials, public and private agencies, and other individuals in order to ensure compliance with Federal, State, and Local disability laws, particularly the Americans with Disabilities Act (A.D.A.); (b) promote full integration of persons with disabilities into the community; (c) provide information, referrals, and technical assistance to individuals, businesses, and organizations in all matters pertaining to disability issues; and (d) participate in a variety of forums and media events to develop public awareness of persons with disabilities and encourage compliance with the A.D.A. The Commission on Disabilities also provides grants to community based organizations to make it possible for persons with disabilities to participate more fully in programs and activities within Needham.

The Town currently has two vacancies on the Commission on Disabilities: one of the positions must be filled by a person with a disability and also one of the candidates will function as a secretary, who should have competent computer skills to take detailed minutes during Commission meetings. Either candidate may want to participate in a one day training offered by the MA Office on Disabilities to learn how to evaluate accessibility in buildings and parking lots for ADA compliance.

Cultural Council (multiple vacancies)
The Cultural Council supports community-based projects and activities in the arts, humanities and interpretive sciences to benefit the residents of Needham, through dispensing public funding allocated by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency. They also sponsor events such as New Year’s Needham and the Spring Arts Festival, for which money is raised separately.

The Council is responsible for informing the public about the availability of public funding for cultural projects and for reviewing and approving applications. Funding of the Massachusetts Cultural Council is determined annually by the state Legislature.

Support is also provided to the Needham Cultural Community through the facilitation of communication among the many cultural organizations and their collaboration through NeedArts and other venues.

Residents who have experience or an interest in the arts, event planning, fund raising, marketing, record keeping and public relations are urged to apply. Meetings are generally the third Monday of each month at 7 pm. Membership terms are for three years.

Design Review Board (alternate)
The Design Review Board (DRB) reviews and approves signage under the Town sign by-law, evaluates and makes recommendations regarding design elements of construction projects on Planning Board submissions and on applications for renovations and new construction on commercial and institutional properties of the town, and certain other categories of development. The purpose of the Committee is to encourage quality design, including architectural appearance, historic considerations, enhancement of landscape, and relationships to the visual environment. For the current vacancy, candidates with experience in art or design or working in retail business within the town are preferred. The DRB meets about twice a month. Membership terms are for three years.

Needham Community Television Development Corporation
The Needham Channel is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization that provides PEG (public access, educational and governmental) cable television programming for the residents of Needham through three public access channels available to Comcast, RCN and Verizon subscribers. Work is accomplished by a small full-time staff and a large number of community volunteers overseen by an Executive Director.

Board meetings are quarterly, but candidates should also be interested and willing to provide expertise and some time working with staff on projects in any one (or more) of the following areas:

- television and video production and broadcasting
- news and public affairs journalism
- marketing and promotion, especially outreach to local business
- supporting, cultivating and recognizing an active community of volunteers

Needham Community Revitalization Trust Fund
The mission of the Needham Community Revitalization Trust Fund (NCRTF) is to revitalize Needham public spaces and bring more art into the public venue through the use of private funds. The NCRTF fund allows private citizens, organizations and businesses to contribute to the general fund to help support a variety of NCRTF projects or directly to a specific NCRTF approved project within the Town.

The NCRTF Committee is composed of seven members. Members are chosen for their ability to represent a cross section of Town areas and interests. Project proposals are brought to the Committee for consideration by committee members and members of the community and Town government. Committee meets as often as required. Membership terms are for three years.

Property Tax Assistance Committee
The Property Tax Assistance Committee reviews suggested eligibility criteria and makes recommendations for any changes to the Board of Selectmen for its review and approval. The funds will be distributed on the basis of need, as determined by the Committee’s interpretation of the eligibility guidelines. Membership terms are for three years.

Taxation Aid Committee
The Taxation Aid Program is overseen by a five member board consisting of the chair of the Board of Assessors or designee, the town treasurer or designee, and three citizens appointed by the Board of Selectmen. The Taxation Aid Committee meets twice a year.

Chapter 166 of the Acts of 1998 authorizes cities and towns to establish a fund for the purpose of accepting donations for property tax relief for certain seniors and disabled taxpayers. The acceptance of this statute allows the tax collector to include with the tax bill an enclosure explaining how donations could be made to the fund. The committee is charged with the review of applications and distribution of funds.

Vacancies may remain open until a suitable candidate has been appointed.

Candidates should be residents of Needham. Vacancies will remain open until qualified candidates have been selected. Please complete Committee Interest Form found on the Town’s website at: http://www.needhamma.gov/committeeform  or send a letter of interest to the Board of Selectmen at .