Turbine Moratorium Defeated, Performing Arts Center Purchase Approved

Town Meeting got it done in one session Saturday with little controversy.

Plymouth Town Meeting got the job done in one session, blazing through more than 20 articles stopping only twice to debate.

The petitioned article that would have put into effect a two-year moratorium on large scale wind turbines was defeated, failing to get the required 2/3 vote. Neither the Board of Selectmen or Finance Committee supported it, but the article did have Planning Board backing.

"We felt that there was compelling information to allow for a moratorium, as requested by the petitioner, on residential industrial wind turbines," Planning Board chairman Marc Garrett told WATD.

Town Meeting also approved spending $650,000 in Community Preservation Act funds to purchase the Congregation Beth Jacob Community Center on the corner of Court and Brewster streets Downtown. The plan is to transform the former church into a performing arts center, as a venue than Memorial Hall.

The building would cost $365,000, and an additional $285,000 would ensure the building complies with Americans with Disabilities Act, as well as install emergency exits and a sprinkler system.

George October 24, 2012 at 07:33 PM
Speed should not be the objective of Town Meeting. It should be a thoughtful forum of respectful discussion and debate. Stopping to debate only two items gives the impression that Town Meeting is a rubber stamp and the members really do not want to be there. Town Meeting is the purest form of democracy but if there is not going to be discussion it will become a useless relic.
Susan Wentworth October 24, 2012 at 07:55 PM
@George.. I would ordinarily agree with you if I hadn’t gone through the process myself. Before this Town Meeting there were new processes put in place. Town Meeting Members had an opportunity to participate in 3 presentation meetings. One of these meetings was televised so anyone that was unable to attend would be able to view the presentations. The presentations on all articles were heard and members were able to ask questions to clarify any concerns they had. If the presenter didn’t have the information they were able to get it and email it out so everyone had the answer. Individual precincts then met and discussed the articles and how they related to their area of town specifically and debated it out. We had the articles weeks before in writing with ample time to read through and do research on our own and talk to people in our precinct for feedback as necessary. We then had another opportunity at Town Meeting to hear the presentations once again and debate if needed as a large group. By the time Town Meeting met most of the questions had been answered and debate been done to help make an informed decision. This is a new system that I think worked very well and probably made Town Meeting go a bit faster as more Members came into the room informed than ever before. Town Meeting was by far not the first time they heard about the articles. I hope that helps you feel better about why it went so fast.


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