By today—Jan. 22—an important legal document should have landed in your mailbox and you have 10 days to complete it and return it to the Town Clerk.
Bedford’s Annual Street Listing/Census 2021 is a brief, four-question form but it carries a lot of weight. It is a state requirement that you complete the form; compliance provides proof of residence, protection of voting rights, veteran’s bonus, housing for the elderly, and related benefits.
And dog-owners, don’t forget that if you have acquired a Hunter or a Peaches or a Dodge in the past year, the Town also needs to know that bit of information.
State law (MGL Chapter 51, Sect. 4) requires that you be sent an annual street listing form in January each year. As long as this writer can remember, the form arrived promptly on the first business day after New Year’s. This year the census forms were mailed a couple of weeks later because, as Town Clerk Bridget Rodrique explained, there were some problems with the vendor who produced the list last year which led the town to produce the forms in-house to ensure accuracy.
The mailing envelope sternly warns “Failure to respond to this mailing for two consecutive years shall result in removal from the active voting list and may result in removal from the voter registration rolls.”
Where is Bedford’s Census information ultimately stored? It is maintained in the Commonwealth’s Voter Registration Information System (VRIS), a function of the Office of the Secretary of State.
The mailing also includes a Vote by Mail Application for the 2021 Annual Town election which takes place on March 13. Two birds with one stone!