At their September 16 meeting, eighteen articles proposed for the November 4 Special Town Meeting were given an initial review by the four Selectmen members able to attend. Although Chair Bill Moonan was not present, the remaining members agreed to recommend approval, at this point, of three of the articles that deal with Town Meeting debate rules, easement acceptance, and rescinding last spring’s Town Meeting authorization to borrow money for the synthetic turf field that was ultimately paid for by available Community Preservation funds.
The other 15 articles, still in draft form, await further consideration. They include:
- Six sign bylaw amendments;
- Authorization for a historic preservation restriction on the depot building at 80 Loomis Street in order to obtain a grant that will subsidize costs for partial exterior restoration;
- Re-confirmation of the 3% Community Preservation surcharge;
- Authorization of Community Preservation projects;
- Town Hall mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems replacement;
- A two-year extension of an existing streetlight maintenance contract;
- Amendments [either increases or decreases to be specified at a later date] to FY14 operating budgets;
- Two collective bargaining agreements: police officers and public works employees;
- Transfer of funds to the Town’s Stabilization Fund (amount still to be determined).
There was some debate about how the Town Hall systems update project would be funded—through borrowing or under the Community Preservation Fund’s “historical preservation” category. The Selectmen deferred the decision until recommendations from the Community Preservation Committee become available.