Becket residents to vote on update to Annual Town Meeting rules


BECKET -- Residents tonight will have an opportunity to vote on an update to the Annual Town Meeting rules -- in addition to a number of fund transfers for various town needs.

At a special town meeting, which begins at 7 p.m. at Town Hall, the nine-article warrant will include an amendment to the town meeting bylaw that would increase publicity to residents, formalize the moderator’s role, and outline roles for participants.

Select Board Chairwoman Jeanne Pryor said a committee was formed more than a year ago to update the outdated town meeting bylaw.

"We wanted to make sure there was enough information so people who go to town meeting would have a clear idea how it runs," Pryor said.

If approved, the bylaw would require the town to mail a copy of the warrant to all full-time and part-time households a week before the meeting. Media outlets would also be notified with a press release.

The bylaw also says the Finance Committee will prepare an Annual Town Meeting report that would outline the financial condition of the town and reasons for its budget recommendations, along with providing other information. No motion to increase an appropriation at town meeting would be more than five percent of the Finance Committee’s recommendation.

Residents also will vote on the creation of a new Bylaw Review Committee; a Community Preservation Committee to study the needs, possibilities, and resources of the town and the use of Community Preservation Act funds; and the town has proposed creating a single committee to oversee Parks and Recreation.

Other bylaws request the transfer of funds from free cash. The article is requesting $7,500 to the Highway Department Machinery Account for repairs to departmental vehicles and equipment following cost overruns from this past winter, and $9,000 for the installation of a water filtration system at the Mullen House after bacteria was discovered in the well water.

There would also be $20,000 transferred from the Vocational Tuition Account to the Vocational Transportation Account to handle larger than anticipated cost in busing students in the vocational program.

To reach John Sakata:

or (413) 496-6240.

On Twitter: @jsakata


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