It will still be a family affair at 174 Worcester Road in Princeton, when Gabi Bennett and her mother, Carla Zottoli, open The Barn in early 2023 at the former location of The Mountain Barn Restaurant. Bennett, 30, of Princeton, said the menu of The Barn will be a continuation of The Mountain Barn, the establishment which her grandfather, Bill Zottoli founded in 1983. The Zottolis owned it for more than 20 years until August 2021, when they closed due to staffing issues, until Bennett started renovating this year after making the decision to take over operations.
The company that provided buses for the Worcester Public Schools is being sued by a nonprofit environmental advocacy organization. The suit filed last month in U.S. District Court by the Conservation Law Foundation claimed Durham School Services violated the federal Clean Air Act by letting buses idle for more than the legally allowed limit of five minutes while parked in a city bus lot. The idling spewed harmful chemicals into the air, compromising the health of Worcester residents who live and work near the lot, the lawsuit claims. National Express LLC, Durham’s parent company, declined to comment, citing pending litigation.
UMass Memorial Health, the largest employer in Central Massachusetts, released its fiscal 2022 financial statements recently, and the results aren’t rosy. What jumps out is a $38.2 million operating loss in fiscal 2022, which ended Sept. 30, compared to $64.7 million in income from operations in the prior fiscal year. The two numbers represent a downward swing of $102.9 million. Its financial stress is further reflected in another number in fiscal 2022. When both operating expenses and nonoperating income are taken into account, expenses exceeded revenues by $161.4 million compared to $220.7 million on the plus side in the prior fiscal year.
Gilbane/Hunt, the company in charge of constructing Polar Park has agreed to pay $1.9 million for allegedly falsifying its efforts to hire woman- and minority-owned businesses as subcontractors on the ballpark project. The penalty was filed in Suffolk Superior Court by the office of state Attorney General Maura Healey, which alleged that Gilbane/Hunt violated the state’s False Claims Act and consumer protection laws by falsely stating in its bid for the project that it planned to maximize participation of woman- and minority-owned businesses. Gilbane/Hunt allegedly misrepresented the status of woman- and minority-owned businesses participation to the Worcester Redevelopment Authority until the project was substantially complete.
Worcester has seen its share of porch thefts since Nov. 1 with 46 reports of stolen packages, according to the Worcester Police Department. Nineteen of those have been during November, and for December there have been 27 reports as of Dec. 19, according to data provided by a spokesperson for the Worcester police. Central Worcester seems to have been hit the worst during the November, according to a map provided by WPD, with the majority of thefts reported along Main Street and heavily on Belmont Hill. In December, thefts stretched across the city on Stafford Street, Packachoag and Union Hill.