CHARTER COMMISSION MEETING
One School Street
Sharon, MA 02067
Present: Paul Izzo, Abigail Marsters, Andrew Nebenzahl, Suzi Peck, Paul Pietal (arrived at 8:00 p.m.), Colleen Tuck
Absent: Peg Arguimbau, Allen Garf, Sam Liao
Mr. Nebenzahl called the Open Session meeting to order at 7:24 p.m. and stated that this evening’s meeting will have discussion on: Budget preparation, Capital Outlay Committee, Priorities Committee, Long-Range Planning, Citizen Petition, Timing & Effectiveness, Status of Piggyback By Laws.
Mr. Nebenzahl asked for a motion to approve the following Open Session minutes of October 26, 2009 as drafted and submitted.
MOTION: (Marsters/Tuck) Moved to approve the Open Session minutes from the October 26, 2009 meeting as drafted and submitted . Vote was four in the affirmative. S. Peck abstained.
S. Peck presented a brief overview of her side-by-side (what is now – what will remain the same and what will change in the proposed Charter).
There was a discussion on boards, commissions and committees – who would do the appointment, i.e. Select Board, Town Moderator, Town Administrator. M. Curran provided language to the members that outlined how everything would remain the same unless there is a reorganization of all the town’s boards and committees.
There was a discussion on the language in Section 2-6-F: Scope of Actions to be taken by Legislative Committee and whether it is necessary to have a report accompany every warrant article and how much detail should be included in the report. A. Nebenzahl suggested: affirmative and final; negative and final; in general. M. Curran explained that the public record law only requires that votes be recorded by a roll call vote.
Additional areas of discussion for language clarification:
• Reference of the ten-day rule – appeal action.
• Criteria for special election to fill a vacancy - timeline. Following a lengthy discussion, A. Nebenzahl asked for a motion.
MOTION: (Marsters/Peck) Move that the Charter language shall call for a special election if there is a vacancy within 120 days left in the vacated term. Vote was six in the negative. Motion did not carry.
• Discussed Section 3-4: Legislative Committee – (b) Powers and Duties – no language change.
• Discussed Article 4-2: Powers and Duties (b) – the composition of the Screening Committee. Deferred further discussion until the by-law is reviewed.
• Discussed Section 5-7: Standing Building Committee – composition of the SBC (10 member board).
• Clarified the powers and duties of the Capital Outlay Committee. A. Nebenzahl highlighted the letter received from the Chair of the C.O. Committee, Paul Linehan. Following the discussion, A. Nebenzahl satated that he would formulate the language for the powers and duties of the C.O. Committee.
• Discussed the powers and duties of the Priorities Committee and the Finance and Audit Committee. Following a lengthy discussion, A. Nebenzahl asked for a motion.
MOTION: (Marsters/Tuck) Moved to approve such grammatical changes with respect in particular to the Priorities Committee, sub paragraph (d) of paragraph 2. Vote was seven in the affirmative.
• Discussed Timing and Effectiveness.
-When would the Charter take effect if approved in May 2010?
- When would the Legislative Committee be elected? There was a lengthy discussion on the most effective date for an election and when they would assume their duties and responsibilities. It was the consensus of the members to include language such as, “on or before November 15th and succeeding elections would be town elections.
There was a brief recess and the Open Session meeting was reconvened at 10:00 p.m.
M. Curran reviewed the language for Section 8-5: Time of Taking Effect. A. Nebenzahl asked members to email him with their thoughts/concerns for further discussion at the Nov. 4th meeting.
• Discussed what members thought should be included in a piggyback by-law.
• Discussed the Screening Committee.
• Discussed citizen’s petition and how to streamline the process.
• Discussed adding a provision to the Charter for a special act of the legislature.
MOTION: (Pietal/Marsters) Moved to add a provision to the proposed Charter requesting a special act of the legislature upon affirmative vote to ratify the Charter. Vote was seven in the affirmative.
• Discussed the budget timeline. P. Pietal outlined the draft language used to create the budget timeline. There was a lengthy discussion on the language in sub sections (1), (2), and (3) of Section 6-7: The Budget.
MOTION: (Izzo/Tuck) Moved to insert language in the sub sections as discussed on November 3rd. Vote was five in the affirmative. No vote: S. Peck
• Discussed the duties and responsibilities of the Long-Range Planning Committee and how it would effect other boards and committees in the town.
Mr. Izzo made the following motion:
MOTION: (Izzo/no second) Before acting on any proposed warrant article concerning land use and development, urban renewal, or expenditures for capital reimbursements, where such warrant articles or expenditures involves a matter covered by the master plan, the Legislative Committee shall refer the proposal to the LRPC, which shall, within the specified time present to the Legislative Committee and prior to the public hearing on the proposed warrant article, report in writing its recommendations therein.
There was a discussion on amending the language in the motion. There was no second to the motion. There was no vote on the motion.
MOTION: (Izzo/Pietal) Moved to approve the technical redrafting of the duties and responsibilities of the Long-Range Planning Committee. Vote was six in the affirmative.
A. Nebenzahl stated that there were some things left to do relative to the long range issues in the Charter and drafting of the report – status of piggyback by-laws, capital outlay language, priorities language, long-range planning language. A final vote on the proposed Charter will be taken on November 5, 2009.
A. Nebenzahl asked for a motion to adjourn.
MOTION: (Tuck/Pietal) Moved to adjourn. Vote was six in the affirmative
Meeting was adjourned at 11:40 p.m.
Submitted on behalf of the Charter Committee by: Helen Campanario, Recording Secretary to the Charter Commission