258th Annual Town Meeting
In spite of the enthusiasm exhibited by Moderator Jim Pistrang the new $26,000 electronic voting devices did not see official use last night other than a 20 minute practice session with only a minor glitch or two.
At one point it looked like they would be fired up for official use, but a member made a "point of order" to remind Mr. Pistrang that a voice vote will always go first. That vote was so overwhelmingly one sided he decided not to waste another minute or two to confirm it via the clickers.
Town Moderator Jim Pistrang demonstrating new electronic voting devices
At this rate the batteries should last quite a while.
But it certainly indicates Town Meeting members were all on the same page with the votes thus far. Even the $10 million Pubic Safety Budget was approved unanimously without any naysayers questioning authority, something this town seems to specialize in.
Of course the long winded advisory articles that have nothing to do with operating our $80+ million enterprise have yet to come up, although a procedural motion moved article 45 to tomorrow night first thing.
Amherst College students want their $2 billion institution to divest from fossil fuels and apparently don't want to get arrested via sit ins like UMass students recently did.
And since they will be gone in a week, it's far more convenient to have the article come up sooner rather than dead last.
Town Meeting, at your service.