SPECIAL ELECTION UPDATE!
It has come to the Town’s attention that much misinformation is circulating about the special election processes and how it is called. Listed below are some highlights to help people better understand the process.
1. Any citizen can petition voters to ask that a particular article of Town Meeting be presented to the voters for reconsideration. In order for the petition to move forward a citizen must collect signatures of 5% of the registered voters. It must be submitted to the Board of Selectmen within 7 days of the end of Town Meeting
George Simolaris did complete the first task for the reconsideration to the voters of Article 10 from Fall Town Meeting to the voters.
2. The next step is for the Board of Selectmen to call the election within 10 days of receiving the petition, the petition was filed on Oct 19th. Ten days from this date is October 29th. The next regularly scheduled meeting of the BOS is Oct 30th. It would be a violation of the Town Charter to call the election after the 29th of October. Therefore, the BOS has properly posted a Special Board of Selectmen Meeting for October 25th to call the election and meet the provisions of the Town Charter.
3. The actual election date parameters of the Town Charter are very specific. The Board of Selectmen is to call the election no sooner than 14 days and no later than 21 days from the date they called the election.
However state law supersedes our own local Town Charter. MGL Chapter 54, Section 42C provides that the Town Clerk is to receive notice at least 35 days prior to holding an election. Since the local practice is to hold municipal elections on a Saturday, the first available Saturday after 35 Days is December 2nd. This is the date that will be recommended to the Board of Selectmen.