December  2016


In This Issue
Great Road Market Study
Chamber Holiday Celebration
Federal Overtime Change Update
Holiday Walk About
Business Development
What the Chmaber did in November?
Chamber Connections
Chamber Calendar
Follow us on Facebook
Great Road Market Study Presentation

In May 2016, the Town of Bedford requested assistance through the Massachusetts Community Compact Initiative and received $17,000 in funding to conduct a comprehensive business district assessment and market study of Bedford's main retail corridor, the Great Road. Fine Point Associates, a Massachusetts-based economic development consulting firm, was retained to conduct the study. Economic Development Coordinator Alyssa Sandoval managed the project, collected business data, oversaw the consultant's work on the project, and conducted survey outreach. A working group comprised of Town staff and community representatives provided important input to the project.

As part of the assessment, from September 26 to October 26, 2016, an online survey of Bedford area residents and employees of area businesses was conducted to assess consumer behavior that might point to market opportunities as well as the satisfaction level with current offerings and conditions.
With over 900 responses from residents and employees in the area, it is clear that Great Road is a place that the community cares deeply about. Fine Point Associates will present study results at the December 6, 2016 Planning Board meeting at 7:30 pm in the Selectmen's Room of Town Hall.

The study report will be helpful in developing a marketing program to encourage desired businesses to locate on Bedford's Great Road, as well as other economic development initiatives to maintain the vibrancy of Great Road. The results of the study will also help to inform the Planning Board's Great Road Zoning Initiative currently underway. A pdf of the study can be viewed here: Great Road Business District Assessment
If you have any questions, please contact Alyssa Sandoval at 781-275-1111, or

 Chamber Holiday Celebration 
It's time to celebrate 2016 and the holiday season. Join us on December 19th, 5-7 PM at Red Heat Tavern for some yu m my a ppetizers and good cheer. Please RSVP by 12/15 by clicking here.
Federal Overtime Change Update
Federal Overtime change that was to go into effect January 1, it has been delayed. Here is a summary:

Tuesday afternoon, a federal judge for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas issued a nationwide preliminary injunction on the Department of Labor's new overtime rules, which were slated to go into effect on December 1, 2016. The judge ruled that the Department of Labor (DOL) likely overstepped its rule making authority by raising the salary threshold as high as it did and by implementing the automatic increase every three years.
What this means now:
  1. The effective date of the rules has been delayed indefinitely.
  2. Employers may choose not to implement the changes they had planned for Dec. 1 compliance.
  3. The new rules have not been thrown out or invalidated - at least not yet.
The judge has not made a final ruling in the case, but the fact that he issued the injunction suggests that he is leaning in favor of the groups that want to stop the rule changes. It is also possible that his final decision will allow some parts of the rule to stand but not others. The DOL has indicated that in the meantime they are considering their legal options with respect to the preliminary injunction.
Employers are obviously wondering whether they should move forward with the changes they have been planning. Unfortunately, this is a difficult question to answer and ultimately a business decision, which is much harder than a compliance decision. Although employers are not required to make changes, they may want to consider the following:
  • Will it hurt the bottom line to make the changes? If so, how much?
  • Will it be difficult to undo changes that have already been made?
  • How will employees feel about the decision? Did they like the changes? Hate the changes?
  • Is the new pay structure better than what is in place now?
  • If the changes aren't implemented now, will it be possible to make them on short notice in the future?
At this point, we do not know how long the injunction will be in place or if the rules will be thrown out entirely. We will be keeping an extremely close eye on this case and will issue further e-Alerts when actionable information is made available.

2nd Annual Holiday Walk About
Shop Local Event
The 2nd Annual Holiday Walk about will be happening on Saturday, December 3rd on and around the town common. The Chamber will be holding a shop local event at Old Town Hall which will run from 3:00 - 6:00 PM.

 Business Development Updates
1. Bedford Walkabout
Set for this Saturday December 3rd. Expecting about the same number of merchants as last year. From the business perspective, success will be measured by the amount of foot traffic as well as exposure to new customers.

2. Great Road Market Survey Results
Alyssa provided an overview of the Great Road Market Study Presentation. Major takeaways included strong interest in more restaurants, public art and entertainment options. The study also included a Business District Assessment & Market Analysis.
There will be a presentation made by the Marketing Consultants on Tuesday December 6th at 7:30pm in Town Hall. The group recommends that Bedford businesses attend the meeting to provide additional feedback.

3. Bedford Marketplace.
It appears the Marketplace is up for sale. Details are expected in the next month or two.

4. Earth Day
There was a brief discussion about the DPW being involved with Earth Day. There has been interest from several Bedford companies to provide volunteers for Earth Day related events (i.e. Litter Cleanup, Path Clearing, etc...). It was recommended that Earth Day become "Earth Month" to provide more opportunities for companies to get involved. It was agreed that having companies get involved in these type of activities would likely lead to additional participation in the Bedford Business Community resulting in a stronger voice on economic development issues. Alyssa Sandoval to provide feedback to the DPW and Adam Schwartz  to have the Chamber reach out to companies about volunteering for Earth Day related activities.

5. Planning Board
It is expect that there will soon be an open seat on the planning board. The Chamber to notify members about this open seat. More information can be found

6. Stuff a Truck
Karen Kenny mentioned the program on October 1st went very well and received positive feedback from local charities. As a result she is looking to expend the program to other dates. Karen to distribute the note from the local charity (be great to see how people benefited from due to the donation of items to this program).

What the Chamber did in November
How many of these events did you attend ? 

Flavors of Bedford

Board of Directors

Two New Members

Leadership Luncheon 



December 3
Tree Lighting & Walk
Town Common
3-6 PM

December 6
Great Road Market Study Presentation
Planning Board Meeting
Town Hall
7:30 PM  

December 8
Board of Directors
Town Center
7:30 AM

 December 19
Chamber Holiday
Red Heat Tavern
5-7 PM
Click here to register

Welcome Our New Chamber Members

Extend Barre Burlington
62 2nd Ave
Burlington, MA

7104 Avalon Dr.
 Bedford, MA


AFC Urgent Care
Atlantic Capitol
Atlas Commercial Real Estate
B& D Advertising Agency
Baldwin Insurance
Barre 3
Baudanza Electric
Bedford Acupuncture
Bedford Car Wash
Bedford Children's Center
Bedford Citizen
Bedford Farms
Bedford FAmily Connection
Bedford Florist
Bedford Funeral Home
Bedford Motel
Bedford Orthodontics
Bedford Periodontal and Dental Implant Care, LLC
Bedford Plaza
Bedford Research Foundation
Bedford VA Research Corp
Bernstein Development
Billerica Crossings
Brightview Concord River
Brookline Bank

Brown & Brown, P.C.
Brueggers Bagels
Caldwell Banker
Callahan's Karate Studio
Carlton-Willard Village
Carlton & Duran, CPAs
Chestnut Dental
Christine Pinney Marketing
ComforCare Home Care
Danielle Beck NP-C-LLC
Davidson's Law Office
Dianne Bridgeman, DDS
The Debbie Spencer Group KW Boston Northwest
Design 2 Order
Design 1 Kitchen & Bath
Doubletree Bedford Glen
DSA Publishing
Edward Jones Investments
Elite Freestyle Karate
Express Pizza
Extend Barre Burlington
First Parish in Bedford
F.W.  Webb Company
Fujifilm Microdiscs
Ge Infracstructure
Go Papaya
Gordon Law Services
Great Road Gallery & Framing
Hanscom Federal Credit Union
Harold Nichols Insurance
Heritage at Bedford Springs
Holi Indian Restaurant
Inside Outside Staging
inConcert Web Solutions
Jamba Juice
JRM Antiques
Kimberly Bee Design
Law Offices of Renee Lazar
Law Office of Ken Gordon
Leary Auto
Learning Express Toys & Play
Lexington Symphony
Lincoln Liquors
Live Life Well
Mead Trees
Metller Toledo
Middlesex Savings Bank
New England Nurseries
North Road Chiropractic
Organix Spa & Salon
Patriot Pediatrics
Peter Quin Insurance Agency
Primrose School
Prince St Cafe & Bakery
Pro Nails
Quality Database Design
Red Heat Tavern
Richard A. Egan Insurance Agency 
Right at Home 
Salem Five
Salon Oz
Salon Reyna
ServPro of Bedford/Lexington
Slak Chiropractic
St. Michael's Parish Center
Stories with a Heart
Suzanne & Co.
The Goddard School
The Higgins Group
The Place for Words College Application Essay Coach
The Real School of Music
The Tutor Doctor
The Well Effect
UPS Store
Waxy's O'Connors