Wellesley Annual Town Meeting ready to roll with 3 sessions this week

Wellesley’s Annual Town Meeting starts on Monday, March 25 at Wellesley High School (50 Rice St.) at 7pm. Tuesday and Wednesday sessions are also scheduled for this week.

Town Meeting serves as Wellesley’s legislative body. There are 240 voting town meeting members who are elected by eight precincts during the annual town election on the first Tuesday of March. Each precinct has 30 members elected to 3-year staggered terms.

This year’s Town Meeting is a bit unusual in that three sessions are scheduled for each of the first two weeks, whereas typically there are two sessions per week. Moderator Mark Kaplan says the decision to schedule Town Meeting this way was to avoid an overly lengthy break later in the process as a result of religious holidays and school vacation in April. Town Meeting continues until all the work is done.

The public is welcome to attend Town Meeting regardless of whether you are a member (you’ll just need to sit in a different section of the Katherine L. Babson Jr. Auditorium than members).

The first night kicks off with some pomp and circumstance, typically including a bit of music, reading of memorial resolutions, and testing out the voting technology. After that, it’s all business.

This year’s Annual Town Meeting warrant is packed with 50-plus articles, which have been vetted by the town’s appointed Advisory Committee. Advisory’s report (and supplemental report) on the articles and motions under those articles can give you a clearer understanding of the items within the warrant.

Among this year’s articles are those on topics such as MBTA Communities zoning, lowering the voting age for local elections, and the town’s new enterprise stormwater fund. The request for a zoning change at 200 Pond Rd. under Article 43 has shelved by the proponent, which sought to build an assisted living facility at the location.

Town Meeting replays

More: Town Meeting member make-up undergoes some big changes

Please support our independent journalism venture at The Swellesley Report