Letter: Stockbridge voters wrong to leave meeting early

Posted
To the editor:

In a terrific display of democracy, a very large and supportive group participated in the annual town meeting in Stockbridge on Monday evening. There were 34 articles/motions which citizens were present to deliberate and act upon.

Article 7 of the 34, dealt with a motion to approve the revised and restated Berkshire Hills Regional School District agreement that had been approved by the regional school committee on Jan. 19. After an excellent debate, the vote to approve Article 7 was 155 to 91 in favor. Congratulations to those who turned out and supported this revision. It was an excellent display of how citizen involvement is so vital to local politics.

However, upon passage of Article 7, a very large number of "concerned citizens," many of whom are products of the local school system, displayed their concern as to the rest of the important remaining 27 articles by getting up and leaving the meeting. What began as an outstanding example of local democracy, turned into an example of a great number of voters clearly showing their true lack of support of, and participation in, the overall governance of the town of Stockbridge.

Disregarding the plea of the town moderator to please stay as there are "many more important articles coming up," this large group left the building. Sorry folks, but leaving the annual meeting after only sevem articles have been decided is simply wrong.

Jim Balfanz,

Stockbridge




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