Special Town Meeting - November 5, 2007
Note: The November 2007 Special Town Meeting minutes printed below are excerpted from the official minutes of this Meeting. For the complete text of all votes taken at this Meeting, contact the Town Clerk's Office.
Pursuant to the Warrant signed by the Selectmen on October 10, 2007, Town Moderator Edward N Perry called the Special Town Meeting to order at 7 p.m. on Monday, November 5, 2007 at the Concord-Carlisle High School. The Moderator declared that the meeting was properly called and that a sufficient number of voters were present to permit the meeting to be opened.
On a Motion made by Margaret Briggs and duly seconded, the following was Voted: That this meeting be held in the Concord-Carlisle Regional High School Auditorium, the Cafeteria, and if necessary, the Gymnasium, and that the halls be connected by means of a public address system and loudspeakers so that the proceedings in the halls can be heard and participated in by all voters present in any hall.
Mr. Perry announced that he had appointed John H. Clymer and George M. Dallas to be Assistant Moderators, and Carolyn C. Flood to be the Deputy Moderator. To make sure that Ms. Flood has full authority to serve as Deputy Moderator, and on a Motion made by Margaret Briggs and duly seconded, the following was Voted with a show of hands and so declared by the Moderator:
That this meeting elects Ms. Carolyn Flood as the Temporary Moderator to preside over this meeting if the Moderator elected by the Town is unable to serve in that position.
Mr. Perry expressed gratitude to CCHS Principal Peter Badalament, the Regional School Committee, and the high school staff for accommodating us. Mention was made of the availability of "green cards" for citizens to volunteer to serve on a committee or board. Mr. Perry reminded attendees of the importance of being familiar with the Town Meeting procedures materials.
Dr. Susan H. Curtin was introduced as the Town Meeting Procedure Resource Person. Fire Chief Ken Willette reviewed the evacuation procedures in the event of an emergency. Mr. Perry noted the appointment of George Sprott as Head Teller, assisted by Todd Crocker and Abraham Fisher. In the event a vote is taken using a secret ballot on any vote, the ballot counting will be under the supervision of David Allen, Ballot Supervisor, with assistance from Mark Myles.
Voters were reminded to keep their Voting Slips handy. Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts brought forward the flags and the assembly stood for a moment of silence. Mr. Perry reminded all to reflect on how, through this Town Meeting, we and our neighbors provide for our common good. He reminded us that the passions of the moment are not always the best guide for our conduct in the future, and that if sacrifice by a few is required, the sacrifice should be only where the common goal is worthy of the sacrifice. He asked all to approach each issue with an open heart and mind. He asked that each of us maintain a saving sense of humor.
Mr. Perry reviewed the role of the Technical Resource Coordinator, David Mickey, assisted by Cline Frasier. He thanked the many employees and volunteers who worked hard preparing for this Town Meeting. He offered special thanks to Town Meeting Coordinator Laurel Landry.
On a Motion made by Margaret Briggs and duly seconded, the following was voted on a show of hands and so declared by the Moderator:
That the reading of the Warrant and the Return of Service thereon be omitted.
Mr. Perry reviewed the anticipated schedule and procedures for the evening's agenda. No Motion is expected under Article 6.
Article 1. Secret Ballot Voting Procedure
The Motion made by Anne D. Shapiro and duly seconded to require a threshold of 100 voters for a secret ballot to be taken on any vote failed to pass. Therefore, a majority vote will be required in order to vote by secret ballot at this Town Meeting.
Article 2 Meeting Procedure - Motion 1.
On a Motion made by Thomas Anzer and duly seconded, the following was Voted: To adopt a "Rule of the Meeting" governing requirements on motions and amendments to motions made under articles concerning expenditures, in order to assure compliance with the requirements of Proposition 2½.
Article 2 Consent Calendar-Motion 2.
The following Motion was made by Thom Anzer and duly seconded: To adopt the Consent Calendar as printed on the front page of the Concord Journal.
Mr. Perry then explained the Consent Calendar procedure, which contains only one Motion under Article 11. Mr. Perry asked if any voters wished to remove Article 11 from the Consent Calendar. Hearing no objections raised, a vote was taken on Mr. Anzer's above Motion, which passed by a two-thirds majority. The Motion which therefore passed under Article 11 was to establish a Post Retirement Group Health Insurance Trust Fund ("refreshing" the Home Rule Petition vote that was passed under Article 42 of the 2004 Annual Town Meeting).
Article 3. Transfer of Funds from Beede Center Enterprise Fund to General Fund
On a Motion made by Christopher Whelan and duly seconded, the following was Voted: To transfer the sum of $30,000 from the Beede Center Enterprise Fund to the General Fund.
Article 4. Sawyer Trust Gift
On a Motion made by Christopher Whelan and duly seconded, the following was Voted unanimously, with grateful thanks to the Trustees of the Sawyer Trust and to all who made this generous gift possible: To transfer to the custody of the Trustees of Town Donations the sum of $300,000 as a gift from the Trustees of the Alfred Sawyer Trust, to be used to create an endowment for the Beede Swim and Fitness Center; and further, that the Town vote to transfer to the custody of the Trustees of Town Donations the sum of $1 700-000-from the Trustees of the Alfred Sawyer Trust to create an expendable fund for sustainable energy and other resource-conserving initiatives for town buildings.
Article 5. New Willard School
The following Motion was made by Peter Fischelis and duly seconded: That the Town vote to appropriate the sum of $29,400,000 for the purpose of constructing and equipping a new Willard School, said funds to be expended under the control of the Town Manager, and further, that the sum of $1,215,000 shall be set aside for construction bid contingency; and further, that to meet this appropriation the Treasurer with the approval of the Select Board be authorized to borrow $29,400,000; provided that no debt shall be issued unless voters approve a Proposition 2½ debt exclusion.
After considerable discussion, at 9:15 p.m. David McIntosh made a Motion to call the question that was duly seconded. A Vote was taken and Mr. McIntosh's Motion passed by a two-thirds majority.
A Vote was then taken on Mr. Fischelis' original Motion, which Passed by an overwhelming two-thirds majority.
Article 6. There was No Motion
Article 7. Zoning Bylaw Amendment - Special Permit Criteria
Upon a Motion made by Mark Bobrowski and duly seconded, the following was Voted by a two-thirds Majority: To delete the last sentence of the first paragraph of §11.6 Special Permit in the Zoning Bylaw, and add a new second paragraph, which defines the criteria for the grant of a special permit.
At 9:25 p.m., Mr. Perry asked for a show of hands as to whether the assembly wished to "push through" and finish the business of this Town Meeting tonight, or if it wished to not take up any new business after 10 p.m., and reconvene on Wednesday, November 7. There was overwhelming support to finish tonight.
Article 8. Amendment to Demolition Delay Bylaw
Upon a Motion made by Deborah Bier and duly seconded, an amendment to the Demolition Delay Bylaw to add Hangar 24 at 711 Virginia Road was overwhelmingly approved.
Article 9. Completion and Publication of Environmental Assessment and Impact Study Regarding Bruce Freeman Rail Trail (By Petition)
The following Motion was made by Daniel Latham and duly seconded: That the Town vote that before completing or submitting to the State a "25% Design" for any abandoned railroad right-of-way conversion project to a rail trail, the Town must complete and publish an environmental study, in accordance with Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA) standards.
After considerable discussion, at 10:39 p.m. Henry Haughton made a Motion to call the question, which was duly seconded. Before taking a vote on Mr. Haughton's Motion, Mr. Perry asked for responses to the outstanding questions. At 10:41 p.m. a vote was taken on Mr. Haughton's Motion, which passed by a two-thirds majority.
A vote was then taken on Mr. Latham's original Motion, which was Overwhelmingly defeated in all 3 rooms.
Article 10. Requirement for Citizen Approval regarding Bruce Freeman Rail Trail 25% Design (By Petition)
The following Motion was made by Richard Waters and duly seconded: That the Town vote that the Town obtain a majority vote at Town Meeting approving the design specified in the so-called "25% Design" for the conversion of any abandoned railroad right-of-way into a "rail trail" before submitting to the State said "25% Design."
At 11:34 p.m. Carroll Sandel made a Motion to call the question, which was duly seconded. A vote was taken on Ms. Sandel's Motion, which passed by a two-thirds majority. A vote was then taken on Mr. Waters' original Motion, which was unclear on a show of hands. A standing count was then taken, which started at 11:36 p.m.
At 11:45 p.m., with the standing count under Article 10 completed, a Motion to adjourn was duly made and seconded and approved on a show of hands.
At 11:48 p.m., once the counted voted was tabulated and finalized, Mr. Perry announced the results under Article 10, which failed to pass, with 259 voting in favor and 264 opposed.
Special Town Meeting was dissolved at 11:48 p.m.
Anita S Tekle
Attendance: 1,283 voters in attendance