How Things Happen (?)

I wasn’t planning to attend tonight’s meeting of the Tiverton Charter Review Commission, but based on the concern about its actions expressed by the school committee last night, I thought it worth observing. Also based on that concern, I sorta expected the attendance to be greater. I’m one of nine non-commission attendees, a group including:

  • Two members of the planning board
  • A member of the school committee
  • The school superintendent
  • A member of the town council

The others here may very well be similarly involved, but I haven’t gotten to the point in my own involvement to recognize them. I’m also not entirely sure what the powers of this commission are, but the absence of regular ol’ citizens is disappointing.
Well, I couldn’t help but take the podium to make some points that may betray me as rogue citizen who doesn’t really understand the processes and history of the issues:

  • Bring back partisanism to the elections. It’s a sham, anyway, and it removes the ability of citizens (most of whom are voting for strangers
  • Keep financial town meetings, if only because the lack of participation is an important bit of information for citizens to know. (Heck, it got me started participating in local issues.)
  • Do not lower quorum minimums, because we risk getting within the range in which special interests can achieve a quorum from among their own member and sympathizers.
  • Find a way to give citizens more say in the negotiation and approval of the contracts that are taking away the purpose of a financial town meeting.
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