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An Ice-Breaking Council Meeting

By Laura C. Semerjian

With Cambridge City Council members only discussing technology upgrades in the election process and minor city traffic concerns, the stand-out highlight from Monday night's meeting was perhaps the public speaking segment.

Cambridge resident Peter Valentine came before the council to announce that the entire globe is about to enter an ice age.

According to Valentine, the only way to prevent the catastrophe is to destroy the present government and social system.

Valentine accused the United States government of conspiring with the news media to hide the impending ice age from the American people.

At the end of his speech, Valentine announced that the U.S. capital has been temporarily moved to Oklahoma, and that that headquarters of the military will now be located in Cambridge.

Rather than responding to Valentine's announcement, council members carried on with general business.

Councillors spent most of the remaining time questioning the members of the Election Commission on their plans to computerize the November elections.

The council had the chance to examine copies of the new ballots to be used at the polls.

Some councillors expressed concern that voters would be confused by the new ballots, and urged the Election Commission to do all it could to educate Cambridge voters about the upgrades.

Councillor Anthony Galluccio also questioned whether the new system would be able to count the ballots that were filled out incorrectly.

The Election Commission plans to test the new ballot system on May 10, and will have decided by early summer whether or not the system will be an improvement.

In other business, Councillors questioned City Manager Robert W. Healy about efforts to improve traffic safety at the intersection of Chauncy and Garden Streets, two blocks from Cambridge Common on the way to Radcliffe Quad.

"Something has to be done," said Councillor Francis H. Duehay, citing a high number of accidents in that area.

The councillors and Healy agreed that cars attempting to cross Garden Street on Chauncy were at high risk of being hit by cars speeding towards the intersection on Garden Street.

According to Healy, the City of Cambridge will reverse the direction on the Chauncy Street extension for six months.

If this change improves the traffic situation, the direction may be permanently changed.

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