Sunday, February 14, 2016

Town Meeting

Town Meeting is one area of our government that I have identified as a focus for change.  I have been asked why I feel strongly about this.  There are many reasons, but I think a good summary is as follows:

  • Town Meeting is no longer representative, as there is rarely even a contested election. 
  • The various committees that advise Town Meeting have grown so broad that no committee is generally able to have a significant and regular advisory role.
  • Town Meeting rarely debates and changes the proposed action in a significant manner.
  • Many of the proposed actions are too complex for meaningful deliberation and action from a body of 150 members.

Representative Town Meeting worked for many years after its inception in 1951.  Over the years we have seen many smart and dedicated Town Meeting Members who were able to be effective and impactful.  Some in fact still serve today.  At this point however, even the most dedicated and resourceful member will be challenged to make meaningful impact in the the diluted format we currently utilize.

Over the next few days I will will expand on each of my points in separate posts that will allow be to explain my perspective more completely.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016


Having worked in education for the last ten years, I have come to appreciate the importance of the governance of schools.  Any charter that is proposed for Framingham must be attentive to this issue. How will the school department fit into the overall structure?  I do not have an immediate answer, it is an issue that must be explored.  The solution could have a significant impact on the ability to pass a charter.  This is a critical area of focus for the campaign and for the charter commission that is elected.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Way Back at the Beginning

1951 was the first year that Town Meeting Members were elected in Framingham.  There were 8 precincts at the time.   Each precinct was allocated 25 members.  In precinct 1, over 100 people ran for the 25 seats.   All precincts had substantially more candidates than the 25 seats available.