Saturday’s Annual Town Meeting-at-a-glance

by beth on June 12, 2020

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The 2020 Annual Town Meeting finally opens tomorrow. Here are important reminders and links to details.

Logistics

ATM 2020 at Trottier-and-Neary-CampusThe meeting is Saturday, June 13 at 1:00 pm on the athletic fields by Neary School (53 Parkerville Road). Town Officials hope to keep the meeting under 2 hours.

The required quorum is 100 voters. Anyone who registered to vote in Southborough by March 7th can attend.

You can find the Town’s information on check in logistics and  safety measures in this post. (It includes news that residents are allowed to bring their own camp chairs and umbrellas if they wish, but they will have to sit to the side to avoid blocking anyone’s view.)

Update on Covid-19 numbers in Southborough

Covid infection data for Southborough (MySouthborough graph based on Town's published data)Those of you nervous about attending might want more reassurance that Southborough’s numbers are still low.

As of 4:00 pm today, there are only two active, confirmed cases of Covid-19 in town. (Back on May 29th, the number of patients still in isolation hit zero after a week of no new confirmed cases. Since then, only two new cases were confirmed. The most recent was June 6th.)

You can click on image right for my graph based on Southborough’s published data. To look for any updates, you can check the Town’s site here.

Up for Vote

Normally, voters decide on both the Town’s spending and how it governs. It seems that most of the governance (like zoning amendments) will wait until fall. Officials hope that voters will cooperate with a plan to focus only on critical articles for funding and administrative authority.

Voters will be asked to support a budget and expenses recommended by Town Meeting’s Advisory Committee and the Board of Selectmen. Combined with other expenses tabled for a future Special Town Meeting, officials project a 2021 tax increase of 0.9% ( or $94.89 per average household).

They will also be asked to approve this year’s changes to the Town’s Salary Administration Plan for Town employees. (The Personnel Board will be available to answer questions but doesn’t plan to make a presentation.) Many of the more simple Articles will be suggested as this year’s consent agenda, with hopes of a quick approval.

The moderator and/or Article proponents will ask to postpone most other Articles that require a lot of discussion/debate to a later meeting this fall. (Ultimately, that decision is up to voters.) 

You can find all of those details, the Articles, and handouts here. That post includes Advisory’s required report to Town Meeting which they encourage attendees to read in advance. 

Blog Coverage

You can find past coverage of preparations and discussions about this year’s meeting, as well as future recaps, here.

Tomorrow, I hope to do some live tweeting from the meeting under #sboroatm20. (How successful I am may depend on the cellular coverage and sunglare.)

Updated (6/12/20 4:44 pm): Somehow a draft posted before I was done. I inserted the section on Covid numbers. Other changes were minor.

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