Both Linda and I attended the Deliberative Session and here is what we remember. Bobby Aldrich stepped to the microphone as a citizen of the community to offer an amendment to the proposed budget committee warrant article. The new law regarding amending warrant articles had gone into effect the night before. The language of said new law was muddy to say the least. Our Town Moderator who is also a partner in the law firm of record in town saw no issue with the amendment and neither did our Town Counsel, who has a terrific haircut. No Selectmen spoke to the amendment.
We voted as a community.
The amendment passed by a wide margin, passed by the citizens who do not want an elected Budget Committee packed with citizens hewing to some agenda. The control that this new budget committee might wield over school budgets killed the proposal.The tone of the budget committee proponents was one of wresting control and they even had prepared another article listing the choice candidates for the committee had the first article passed.
Most prefer the system that is in place, with the Selectmen as ultimate arbiters of the Town Budget and committee assignments.
Judge McHugh stumbled in providing relief to the plaintiffs.
He wasn’t there. His decision was made in the vacuum of a court room, devoid of the flavor of the day, the moment.
There was a comment from someone recently either on TV, in the News Letter or on Brandon Stauber’s blog, Patch, about a packed room. Packed with people who attended with the sole purpose of defeating the Budget Committee proposal.
This year because the session was not held in the drafty Town Hall, but in our beautiful and comfortable HS auditorium we had lots of new attendees. I looked around and counted the regulars prior to Charlie Tucker’s annual folksy count of pure citizen attendee versus Town employee. The room was filled with new people,this was no flash mob driven to attend by Twitter and Facebook prattle.
Democracy in action is what I experienced at the Deliberative Session.
It is time to speak up as pure citizens that support and work within the current system and reject the shrill tone and tactics of the opposition.
The Town was not the bad actor, your fellow citizens have basically sued the majority, their own neighbors in our Community.
Perhaps we should pass the hat to provide them relief for their crushing loss.
See you at the Talbot,