6 thoughts on “LETTER: Charter Review Needs Transparency, Should Consider All 3 Forms of Government

  1. I can tell you that 90% of voters have no idea whatsoever what this is all about and in my opinion probably do not believe there is any need for change.

    Presenting voters with a ballot question on this in the near future is absurd is like spinning a roulette wheel.

    WHO is pushing for a change in governance and exactly WHAT is their compelling reason for turning the town upside over this?

    Is this a push for power by a certain faction?

    • Sal,
      The law requires that every 10 years we review the Charter. As I explain in more detail below, we’ve done this 3 times since adopting this form of Government. But at the time there was no strong push to make major changes.
      This time there is move by some in Community to adopt a Mayoral form of City Government. So the Charter Review is mandated by law. However, this time there is a push for major changes. I agree with you 100%. This is not the right time, under these conditions to do this. Nor is their any pressing need. While the Law requires we have review every 10 years, it doesn’t require we make changes. Nor does it preclude us from having a review in between the ten year period.

  2. I’m not a huge advocate of returning to Town Meeting. Nor am I totally against it.
    But Marylin makes a legitimate point. If this Charter Review is going to actually consider changing the form of Government, then everything should be on the table. That said; it’s the night the kind of thing that should be taken place in the middle of pandemic, where we can’t have in person meetings. Zoom and tele-meetings aren’t the same. Yes they do allow access and make it easier for some. By the same toke it excludes a huge part of the population that isn’t up to speed with the technology. Moreover, the dynamic is different. People can’t as easily respond to point that was by another member of the public.

    We’re talking about changing our form of Government. This isn’t just about tweaking the Charter. So it requires a tremendous amount of input.

    We adopted this form of Government 40 years ago. For the most part it has served us fairly well. In the last 40 years we’ve had 3 Charter reviews. To the best of my knowledge there was never a huge effort or consideration to changing the FORM of government during those reviews. It’s simply been a matter of making adjustments to the current form.

    So we should not approach a Change in Government FORM, the same way we’ve approached the 3 prior Charter Reviews.

    I suggest we put anything of that magnitude off for a few years. When we come to the table…. EVERYTHING should be on the table. It might get shot down….. but let the proponents of one particular direction for the town be heard.

  3. I agree with Marilyn and John that all options should be presented at the April 6 meeting. Elections are so important these days and transparency is necessary. If we have extra time to look at the various possibilities and public meetings could be held outside when the weather is better and more people have been vaccinated, why not consider this. Perhaps the town can send a mailing to people explaining what is happening. Many people are not even aware that the Charter is being reviewed or what it is all about. Let’s not rush a process through just to get it done. Let’s approach it thoughtfully and carefully.

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