Business Briefs.



Millbury Savings opens Worcester branch

WORCESTER - Millbury Savings Bank opened its first Worcester branch last week, holding a ribbon-cutting at 1001 Millbury St.

Bank officials were joined by Lt. Gov. Timothy P. Murray, Mayor Joseph M. Petty, City Manager Michael V. O'Brien and state and local officials. Millbury Savings President and Chief Executive Officer William J. Walsh declared the 2,500-square-foot, full-service branch at Millbury and Providence streets open for business.

"We're very excited about extending our community bank presence northward into Worcester," said Mr. Walsh in a prepared release. "With no other banks' branches within a mile of this location, this branch will become an important resource for financial services to the residents and businesses of Quinsigamond Village, Vernon Hill and the city of Worcester."

Construction took about seven months, according to the company, and employed primarily local contractors and subcontractors, led by McGovern Construction Co. of Sutton. The branch will employ six full- and part-time employees, and will have a drive-up teller window, drive-up ATM and night depository.

Council revives talk of `Philadelphia plan'

WORCESTER - A group of city councilors has resurrected talk about the "Philadelphia Plan" - an economic development tool used in Philadelphia that puts a freeze on predevelopment assessed property values for 10 years, and on any improvements made to commercial property or new construction, as a way to help facilitate expansion of a community's commercial tax base.

Councilor-at-Large Frederick C. Rushton and five other councilors co-sponsored an order asking the city administration to update a previous report it did on the Philadelphia Plan, which was also considered by the Mayor's Task Force on Job Growth and Job Retention.

Mr. Rushton said he would like to bring the issue before his Economic Development Committee as a way to jumpstart discussion.

He even suggested the possibility of a committee trip to Philadelphia some time in the future so members could meet with Philadelphia officials and discuss with them the merits of the program and how it has worked for that city.

"It's time to dust off this report and update it so we can see if this is something that would be right for Worcester," Mr. Rushton said. "With this program, we could potentially take areas of Worcester that may be long dormant and lay the seeds so they may flower. Let's start a...

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