Friday, December 19, 2003
Selectmen appoint associate members to Planning Board
At a joint meeting of the Board of Selectmen and the Planning Board on December 9, the combined boards approved Ray Bahr of Hickory Lane and Richard Boule of Kimball Road as associate members of the Planning Board. Planning Board Chair Louise Hara explained the importance of having two associate members. "Five voting members are needed throughout all special permit public hearings. This allows us to have more people attending the proceedings so that a minimum of five is maintained during unavoidable absences." She also pointed out the benefit of additional expertise, since Planning Board terms have been shortened from five years to three, leaving less time to become familiar with the complex rules and regulations.
As three Boy Scouts from Troop 135 looked on in fascination during their first exposure to town government, Selectman Vivian Chaput injected a small element of doubt in the otherwise uncontroversial proceedings. "I assume that the associate members can legally vote on a special permit," she wondered. Her hypothetical question hung in the air without an informed response. On the one hand, they're not elected like full members, but voting rights must have been verified when the bylaw change was approved.
Planning Board member Phyllis Zinicola moved that the two candidates be appointed as associate members, with terms ending on June 30, 2004, or when specified in the bylaw, whichever is longer. Both the Board of Selectmen and the Planning Board voted unanimously to approve the motion.
© 2003 The