Briefcase Departments


Springfield Parking Authority Reorganized

SPRINGFIELD — Mayor Domenic Sarno and Springfield Parking Authority (SPA) Chairwoman Mary E. McNally recently announced several changes at the Springfield Parking Authority. The SPA board has eliminated the position of executive director effective June 30, 2012. Harold King currently serves as the SPA’s Executive Director. Ehsanul Bhuiya will oversee day-to-day operations at the SPA on an interim basis. Springfield Redevelopment Authority Executive Director and former SPA Executive Director Christopher Moskal will temporarily provide management oversight for the SPA. In preparation for a refinancing of the SPA bonds due in June of 2013, and the issuance of a request for proposals (RFP) for the management of on and off street parking currently contracted to Republic Parking and expiring in early 2013, Sarno has directed the City’s Director of Internal Audit Cecilia Goulet, to undertake a review of the SPA’s current financial position and report back to him and the SPA Board of Directors within 60 days.
“Taking better advantage of the economic development capabilities of the Springfield Parking Authority as an essential element in our economic development delivery system is key to our continued success,” said Sarno. “With the current debt of the authority and the conditions of its facilities, especially the civic center garage, it is important for the city to make sure that there is a clear expectation of the SPA, better management and marketing of all on and off street parking in the downtown area and its return to its original role as an economic development tool for the city.” Since last year, the City has been working with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and MassDevelopment on the issue of parking in the downtown. A study was commissioned by MassDevelopment and was recently presented to the business community by Utile Inc. The study assesses the current parking inventory and demand in downtown as well as locations for potential new parking sites to replace the aging Civic Center garage in the central business district.


UMass Family Business Center Forges Partnership with BFF Affiliate Network

AMHERST — The UMass Amherst Family Business Center has joined the Business Families Foundation (BFF) Affiliate Network to work collaboratively on developing additional educational material, supporting business-family communities, and encouraging research in the field of family business. As a philanthropic organization, the BFF supports research and develops and disseminates educational material to family enterprises and professionals working with them to help them be aware of and address their unique growth and development challenges. It has been working for the past decade with a collaborative network of university-based centers for family enterprise and is welcoming new centers to join this affiliate network worldwide. These centers provide a wide range of courses, services, and activities to business family communities and are also providers of BFF’s “Road Map for Entrepreneurial Families” in-class program. “The UMass Family Business Center shares our values and those of our affiliate network members in their dedication and care in serving business-family communities in their region through quality continuous education,” said Dr. Pascale Michaud, president of BFF. Members of the BFF Affiliate Network contribute to the shared goal of increasing awareness of the unique features of family-owned enterprises and entrepreneurial families by offering educational and continuous learning options for business family members, those who advise them, and students in the field who may be helpful in anticipating and dealing with family business growth and development. For more information, contact Ira Bryck at the UMass Family Business Center at (413) 545-4545 or [email protected]


U.S. Family Wealth Shrank During the Recession

WASHINGTON — The Great Recession left the median U.S. family in 2010 with no more wealth than it had in the early 1990s, erasing more than two decades of accumulated prosperity, the Federal Reserve announced recently. The median family had a a net worth of $77,300 in 2010, compared to $126,400 in 2007, the Fed announced. The crash of housing prices explained three-quarters of the loss, which was compounded by the loss of income, as the earnings of the median family fell by 7.7% during the same period. The new data comes from the Fed’s release of its triennial Survey of Consumer Finance, one of the broadest and deepest sources of information about the financial health of U.S. families. The latest survey is based on data collected in 2010, and figures are reported in 2010 dollars. The survey underscores the fact that Americans are saving less for future needs and making little progress in repaying debt. The share of families saving anything over the previous year fell to 52% in 2010 from 56.4% in 2007.


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