The Board of Selectmen (BOS) approved a finalized version of the November 6 ballot on Friday, including nine revisions to the Town Charter that will appear with the federal and state elections in three weeks.
Voters will have the opportunity to review an explanatory text before casting their ballots on Election Day, however in an effort to provide as much information as possible, the selectmen decided to create an information brochure to send out as a mailer and a community forum has been organized for October 22 in the Brookfield High School (BHS) auditorium.
The information flyer [see attached] will be sent out next week, according to First Selectman Bill Davidson, and will include a sample ballot for voters to familiarize themselves with. (Residents can also find the explanatory text, sample ballot and the Charter Revision Commission’s final report on the town’s website.)
Davidson said that the flyer was sent to the Secretary of State’s office to be cleared for neutrality and that a single line was deemed potentially subjective and removed.
On Monday, residents can gather at BHS at 7 p.m. to hear from former Charter Revision Commission (CRC) members on why each alteration is being proposed and ask questions in a moderated format, led by local resident and WestConn political science professor Chris Kukk.
Each question will be introduced one at a time and a CRC member will explain the reasoning behind it. Afterward, Kukk will summarize the rationale and ask any necessary questions for clarification before opening it up to the audience for questions.
All nine questions might be considered, but there will be a focus on appointing a Town Manager, electing the First Selectman separate from the Selectmen pool, allowing residents to add to a budget at the Annual Town Meeting, the ability to petition an action of the Board of Finance and increasing the number of signatures needed for certain petitions.
The original intention was to allow time for a response in opposition to each proposal after the CRC member spoke, however, according to Selectman Howard Lasser, one of the organizers of the forum, “no one has come forward to present the alternative view.”