Topics: Town Meeting

Voters Nix Monomoy Theatre Zoning Proposal

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — Treating it like an idea straight out of left field – literally – voters gathered at Veterans Field for Saturday’s special town meeting summarily rejected a zoning bylaw change linked to the redevelopment of the Monomoy Theatre property. Seated in the baseball field facing the outfield, voters could imagine the project that would have created 24 condominium units on the property next door, just behin...

CHATHAM — Disposing of Saturday’s special town meeting in about 36 minutes, voters unanimously rejected a zoning bylaw change linked to the redevelopment of the Monomoy Theatre property. Worried about the density and traffic that the project would create, and without any guarantee that a restored theater building would ever operate the way Monomoy Theatre did, 324 voters unanimously turned down the zoning byla...

Harwich Town Meeting Finally Approves Operating Budgets

By: William F. Galvin

Special District, Multi-family Update OK'd HARWICH — It was long awaited, but residents finally got the opportunity to act on the annual town meeting warrant in an outdoor setting on Saturday. Five operating budgets were approved totaling $68, 957,862, a 1.4 percent decrease from last year's budget. Voters also approved unanimously a zoning amendment that creates a West Harwich Special District with a focus...

Annual Town Meeting Starts At 10 a.m. At Monomoy High Field HARWICH — Three petitioned articles focusing on the environment are likely to generate debate when voters gather on Saturday morning to act on the annual town meeting warrant. The annual town meeting was rescheduled from last spring to Sept. 26 at 10 a.m. and moved outside to the stadium field at Monomoy Regional High School because of the COVID-19...

Weekend At The Beach Reserved For Special Town Meeting

By: Ed Maroney

ORLEANS — The Saturday, Oct. 31, special town meeting will be no day at the beach — well, actually, that’s exactly what it will be. Starting at 11 a.m., the Nauset Beach gathering will cover the waterfront of town needs with articles addressing the deteriorating fire station, dredging of Nauset Estuary and Pleasant Bay, retail marijuana sales, and even a resident parking sticker for the beach itself and othe...

Harwich Lowers Town Meeting Quorum To 100 Voters

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — It will take only 100 registered voters to reach a quorum for the annual town meeting scheduled to be held at the Monomoy Regional High School stadium field on Saturday, Sept. 26. The town has traditionally set the town meeting quorum at 150 registered voters, but given the pandemic and provisions in state statutes extending to municipalities the right to make adjustments to quorums, selectmen Monday...

Harwich To Consider Lowering Town Meeting Quorum

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — Selectmen are considering whether to reduce the quorum for the Sept. 26 annual town meeting to as low as 15 registered voters. On Monday, according to the agenda, the board will “vote pursuant (to Massachusetts General Law) to reduce the quorum for the annual town meeting…to no less than 10 percent of the quorum requirement of 150 under section 271- 2 of the Town Code, or 15 registered voters.” Mo...

ORLEANS — “Fantastic” was how select board member Andrea Reed described the community’s first outdoor town meeting, which drew 439 voters to the running track at Nauset Regional Middle School on June 20. Member Cecil Newcomb congratulated Moderator David Lyttle for “running a very efficient, streamlined meeting” during the board’s post-mortem on July 1. “It went very well, given the logistics. Thank God t...

ORLEANS — If democracy dies in darkness, as The Washington Post’s slogan declares, it appears to thrive in sunlight, even in the midst of a pandemic. Saturday morning’s outdoor annual town meeting at the Nauset Regional Middle School track drew 439 voters, more than double the number required for a quorum. Many sat in socially-distanced pairs, with some sporting colorful umbrellas. Most wore masks. An opera...

ORLEANS — Rain is predicted for the morning of Saturday, June 20. So is an outdoor town meeting. That long-range forecast is just one view; another prediction shows a string of rainy days leading up to a cloudy but dry June 20. “If possible, we’ll just postpone it to the next day,” Moderator David Lyttle told selectmen at their pre-town meeting session June 3. “These are remarkable times that call for remarkab...

Take Me Out To The...Town Meeting

By: Alan Pollock

Annual Session To Be Held At Veterans Field CHATHAM — There won’t be any baseball played on Veterans Field this summer, but on June 22, town officials will be pitching an abbreviated town meeting warrant to a gathering of socially-distanced voters. For safety during COVID-19, the town’s annual legislative session is being held outdoors at 6 p.m. rather than at the middle school. It’s certainly the first tim...

Open-Air Town Meeting Set for June 20

By: Ed Maroney

ORLEANS - There's no word yet on whether picnic lunches will be encouraged, but the selectmen have decided that the 2020 annual town meeting will be held alfresco. The town's annual legislative session will be held outdoors Saturday, June 20, at 10 a.m. in the center of Nauset Regional Middle School's running track.  The open-air session will be postponed if it rains. Town meeting usually takes place in the...

HARWICH — Selectmen are awaiting legislation making its way through Beacon Hill that includes provisions on how municipalities in Massachusetts can address town meetings and funding a budget moving into FY21. Interim Town Administrator Joseph Powers said legislation has been approved in the Senate that will allow town meeting actions just on financial issues. But there has been no clear definition on what “fin...

COVID-19 Prompts Deep Spending Cuts CHATHAM — Thanks to the pandemic, voters at the annual town meeting scheduled for June 22 will likely see some extreme social distancing, along with a warrant stripped down of big-ticket spending articles and a sobering town budget. Selectmen chose the new date for town meeting on Monday, but a provision is in place that allows the town moderator to postpone the session f...

HARWICH — Critical budget items will be the focus of the June 22 annual town meeting. Other articles, especially those likely to generate prolonged discussion, will be postponed. That is, if the town can hold the session on June 22. “I’m still skeptical we’ll have a June annual town meeting,” Selectman Michael MacAskill said last Friday. If the meeting is held, Board of Selectmen Chairman Larry Ballantin...

Harwich Town Meeting And Elections Moved To Late June

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The annual town meeting and local elections have been moved to late June in the hope that the COVID-19 pandemic will have dissipated, and health officials will be satisfied that social distancing is no longer necessary and residents will once again feel comfortable congregating. Selectmen last week set June 22 as the date for the annual meeting, and the town election will follow on June 30. The st...