On July 1, Massachusetts reported 261 new cases of COVID-19. Hull’s total number of cases since Jan. 1 was 51.
Jennifer Constable was appointed chairwoman of the Board of Selectmen in the board’s annual postelection reorganization. Selectman Greg Grey and new member Donna Pursel were appointed as vice chairman and clerk, respectively.
The Board of Selectmen authorized Town Manager Philip Lemnios to file for Plymouth County CARES Act reimbursement through the $90 million federal reimbursement program for coronavirus-related expenses. The town’s share of the total funds, based on population, was estimated at $450,000.
The recently restored Roman chariot was re-installed on the platform of the Paragon Carousel.
A citizens’ group, citing health, safety, and other risks, organized in opposition to a proposed marijuana grow site and sales facility at the beach.
Annual safety tips for July Fourth were dispensed and fireworks lit up the night sky along the peninsula in celebration of Independence Day.
The C-Note’s owner, Charlie Fruzzetti, announced that the club would not reopen after remaining closed since the March shutdown, stating that the club would not be able to recoup its losses. Following the announcement, and an outpouring of public support, the owners were able to extend their lease, giving them a chance to try to raise the needed funds to continue.
More than 160 residents and other interested parties participated as the Board of Selectmen met to learn about the proposal to repurpose the former aquarium building at 120 Nantasket Ave. into a full-service marijuana cultivation site and dispensary.
The selectmen voted to extend through September the emergency parking regulations put in place this spring.
Sunny skies and high temperatures drew huge crowds to Nantasket Beach, causing major traffic congestion. A code red call was placed to residents to alert them to expect delays. Town officials met with state Department of Conservation and Recreation representatives to request that they consider scaling back the number of available parking spots.
Hull PorchFest canceled its 2020 event, promising to return in 2021. Sidewalk concerts held outdoors in the Kenberma shopping district would continue during the summer.
After a nearly four-month hiatus, courthouses within Plymouth County resumed in-person services with limited capacity.
A new state law was passed to allow all registered voters in Massachusetts to vote by mail in any 2020 election.
Paul Cutcliffe, president of PIII Corp., sold the Nantasket Hotel at the Beach to Jon Saunders of the Nantasket Hospitality Group, for more than $4 million in a structured sale.
Ownership of the local water system was officially transferred from the Aquarion Water Co. to the town of Hingham.
The remnants of Tropical Storm Isaias made an impact on Hull as it knocked out power for three hours. The outage was triggered when high winds caused two power line cables to become wrapped together.
The School Committee voted to launch the new school year at the Hull Public Schools with a plan that combined in-person and distance learning. Middle and high school students would participate in a hybrid plan, while Jacobs students, with more space at that school, would attend in person. All in-person learning would require social distancing, regular sanitization, the wearing of face masks, and other protocols. For families who did not wish to have their children participate in any form of in-person learning, a remote option was available.
The 13 members of Wellspring’s class of 2020 received their degrees. The graduation exercises were held at the Bernie King Pavilion on Nantasket Beach.
Board of Selectmen Chairwoman Jennifer Constable asked Gov. Charlie Baker to take action to limit the number of parking spots at Nantasket Beach lots. DCR representatives met with town officials and promised to cut beach parking to about 48 percent of capacity.
As of Aug. 12, the Hull COVID-19 case count was 62, with 11 new cases in 14 days, according to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health website. That number moved Hull into the “red zone,” the state’s highest-risk category. A week later, it would move back into the yellow classification.
Seventy Hull High School seniors took to the new turf field for a masked and socially distanced graduation. The hour-long program was highlighted by honor essays delivered by valedictorian and class president Haven Veraguas and salutatorian Alyssa Healey.
Hull’s 2020 roadway construction projects were underway, following the town’s 2018 plan to address Hull’s aging roadway and sidewalk infrastructure. The new work would complete approximately 5 additional miles of improvements.
The Hull Lifesaving Museum’s annual illumination of the harbor to honor the town’s lifesaving tradition was conducted virtually this year. Instead of traditional road flares, more than 6,000 lightweight foam wands, equipped with LED lights, were purchased by residents and the town was aglow with thousands of lights affixed to porches, cars, and bicycles and carried along by walkers.
In-person early voting in the state and national primary took place at Town Hall
Longtime Senior Center Director Barbara Lawlor announced that she was retiring from her post after 31 years serving Hull’s senior community. A resolution honoring her service was presented by the Board of Selectmen, and Lawlor was celebrated with a car parade and accolades from residents, colleagues, and town officials.
The Board of Selectmen agreed to sign a letter supporting two recommendations contained in a joint study by Dr. R. John Hansman and the MIT flight lab to help address flight noise and other issues created by aircraft that fly over Hull, Hingham, and Cohasset en route to and from the airport in Boston.
Groundbreaking for an Art Deco-style commercial and residential development at 163 Nantasket Ave. took place. Complications associated with the coronavirus had delayed the project, a mixed-use building containing apartments on three floors, ground-level parking, and commercial space.
A total of 3,548 ballots were cast in the state primary election, a turnout of nearly 38 percent. More than half took advantage of early and mail-in voting.
The Board of Health sponsored two drive-through flu-shot clinics in a DCR parking lot.
Former Hull school superintendent Michael Devine filed a claim with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination regarding his termination. The School Committee fired Devine in April after allegations of inappropriate communications with a former student.
The Conservation Commission’s unanimous approval cleared the way for four dedicated pickleball courts, a new basketball court, new fencing, improved lighting, and a handicap-accessible ramp at the Kenberma playground.
The Board of Selectmen decided not to accept applications for Community Preservation Act proposals that involve town property for the current round of funding.
The Hull Yacht Club’s Great Chase Race celebrated the 30th anniversary of the annual regatta without pre- or post-race social activities due to the coronavirus.
Hull playgrounds reopened. The town required playground patrons to wear masks and practice physical distancing. Basketball courts remained closed.
A student at Hull High School tested positive for the coronavirus. Parents of students in close contact with the student were notified. The district followed state Department of Public Health protocols. The district requested that parents whose students were tested for COVID-19 report the results to the school nurse.
The Hull Public Schools engaged BLW Engineers to evaluate the HVAC system for the schools in light of potential COVID-19 considerations. All the schools were deemed safe to occupy, even with the windows closed.
The MBTA, citing budget shortfalls, announced that it was looking at the possibility of eliminating some of its services, spotlighting the Hull and Hingham ferries. Save the Ferry, a grassroots effort to save the Hull/Hingham ferry service, was quickly launched by residents Jason McCann and Dennis Zaia. Rep. Joan Meschino, a Hull resident, and Sen. Patrick O’Connor began working closely with the towns of Hull, Hingham, and Cohasset to oppose potential closures.
A brief windstorm brought down multiple large trees in Hingham that fell across the main transmission lines that feed the town of Hull, causing a town-wide power outage for more than 24 hours. The town retained outside legal counsel specializing in utility law to examine its options to file actions to hold National Grid accountable for the increasing number of power outages that have occurred over the past several years.
With cases rising in Massachusetts, Hull remained in the moderate-risk yellow zone for coronavirus cases.
Construction began to restore 450 feet of dune in a highly vulnerable section of Beach Avenue just north of Coburn Street. Approximately 1,200 cubic yards of sand – 55 tractor-trailer loads – were shaped to match the height and width of the adjacent dune system in an effort to re-establish a continuous dune.
After a contentious review process, the Board of Selectmen reached a settlement with ExteNet, a provider of distributed networks, that allowed the installation of three antennae on Beach Avenue.
Representatives of CBI Consulting presented a 38-page assessment to the Board of Selectmen evaluating the condition of the 85-foot Fort Revere Water Tower and making recommendations for repairs that carried an estimated $1.5 million price tag. The 1903 tower was deemed unsafe for visitors and was closed in 2012.
On Nov. 1, Massachusetts reported 1,292 new cases of COVID-19. Hull’s total number of cases since Jan. 1 was 92.
On Nov. 2, in response to ballooning numbers of COVID-19 cases and concerns about upcoming holidays, Governor Baker issued a revised mask mandate, requiring that masks be worn at all times in public, even when social distancing was possible. He also decreased the size of public gatherings allowed at residences.
A prerecorded Veterans Day ceremony was filmed live at the War Memorial on Nantasket Avenue and featured keynote speaker Kevin R. Beck, a retired U.S. Navy lieutenant commander.
Organizers of the Save the Ferry campaign launched a media blitz in anticipation of the decision of the MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board scheduled for November. Later in the month Save the Ferry organized a Ride the Ferry Day in an effort to help residents show their support. A peaceful protest was held at the Hingham ferry depot.
Hull voters turned out in force for the presidential election, which allowed a wide range of voting options, including absentee, early voting in person or by mail, and voting on Election Day. Out of 7,135 voting, 4,507 voted for Biden/Harris and 2,433 voted for Trump/Pence.
Five open seats on the nine-member Council on Aging were filled by the Board of Selectmen. Robert Goldstein, Mimi Leary, Michael Maloon, Hannah Taverna, and David Weekley were appointed.
Rising numbers of COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts prompted a new directive from Governor Baker requiring in-person restaurant dining to end by 10 p.m., with the last seating at 9:30 p.m. In addition, he issued an overnight stay-at-home advisory from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. regarding activities other than commuting to or from work, doing essential errands such as grocery shopping, and addressing health needs.
The Board of Selectmen voted to reduce the liquor license renewal fee by 50 percent for restaurants and by 100 percent for the town’s two pouring establishments.
Michael McDevitt and Stephanie Aprea, owners of the Coast Guard boathouse currently housed at 125 Main St., said that they were in negotiations with a nonprofit in Chatham that hoped to purchase the building.
Hull’s traditional Thanksgiving bonfire would not take place this year due to coronavirus concerns, but another community-supported event, the Hull Fire Department’s annual toy drive, continued as usual.
The Board of Selectmen voted to support a new tax rate of $12.68 per $1,000 of assessed value, down from $12.82 for the previous fiscal year. The average single-family home valuation increased by 6.8 percent over last year’s, from $472,900 to $505,000, with an accompanying average 5.6 percent property tax bill increase. The average commercial property valuation saw a 7.2 percent increase.
The Massport Community Advisory Committee voted unanimously to support the Federal Aviation Administration’s proposed modifications to flight paths over Hull and other South Shore communities.
School Superintendent Judith Kuehn announced that 21 Hull High School seniors who excelled on MCAS tests qualified for the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship, making them eligible for free tuition at the University of Massachusetts (any campus) or any of the Massachusetts state colleges, community colleges, or universities.
The Hull Municipal Light Plant announced plans to rent five generators to ensure that the town would not lose power for an extended period of time during the winter months. The cost would be paid by the light plant’s emergency fund.
For the third year in a row, a colorful lobster trap tree honoring Hull’s rich maritime tradition was constructed on the lawn of the historic Paragon Carousel. The tree is a Hull Nantasket Chamber of Commerce holiday project.
Headquartered at Daddy’s Beach Club, more than 100 volunteers showed up to prepare, plate, and deliver 600 Thanksgiving meals. Volunteers of all ages worked together, outside in the rain, with COVID-19 regulations in place to get meals to those in need.
Scituate Council on Aging coordinator Lisa Thornton was the unanimous choice from a pool of more than 40 candidates to fill the town’s director of elder services position vacated by Barbara Lawlor in August.
A test run of the five temporary generators rented by the Hull Municipal Light Plant proved that they were up to the task. The town powered down off the National Grid lines, and within minutes the diesel-powered generators kicked in. In typical circumstances, the generators could take up to two hours to power up.
Dec. 10 marked the beginning of the celebration of Hanukkah. The annual community candle-lighting took place at the Gazebo in Veterans Memorial Park.
On Dec. 11, the FDA approved the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use.
A new indoor coronavirus testing site for adults and children opened in Hingham to provide swab tests to residents of that town and surrounding communities, including Hull.
Gov. Charlie Baker announced that all Massachusetts communities would return to Phase 3, Step 1 of the state’s reopening plan due to an increase in new coronavirus cases and hospitalizations.
On Dec. 17, with 34 cases reported in the previous two weeks, Hull met the criteria to be designated a red zone by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
School Superintendent Kuehn’s decision to cancel winter sports made for a long and vocal School Committee meeting. The school nurses and Board of Health had recommended cancelling the 2020-2021 season. Some parents and students objected. A final decision was put off until the committee’s next meeting.
The MBTA announced that neither the Hull-Hingham ferry service nor the 714 Hull bus run would be eliminated, although both will operate on reduced schedules and direct ferry service between Hingham and Boston would be suspended in January. The Greenbush commuter train would also continue to operate at a reduced frequency. The MBTA voted to revisit ridership by March 15 to consider whether service levels could be restored.
Board of Health Director Joyce Sullivan reported she had applied for doses of COVID-19 vaccine for Hull through the state DPH. The request was approved, and a vaccine refrigerator was expected to arrive soon, but the time frame for when the vaccine would arrive and which kind it would be was still uncertain.
Ninety-three houses and businesses throughout town were lit up with festive holiday lights and other decorations as part of “Bibbidi Bobbidi Bright,” a special event planned to lift the spirits of the community.
On Dec. 24, with 32 new cases, Hull remained in the state’s COVID-19 red zone for the second week in a row. Hull’s total number of cases since Jan. 1 was 189.
Nearly 100 volunteers packed up and delivered more than 500 seafood and turkey holiday meals prepared by Jake’s Seafood Restaurant and Daddy’s Beach Club for members of the Hull community.