Friday, April 27, 2007
Concord approves CCHS improvements, budget, playing fields
In the first two nights of the Concord Town Meeting, April 23 and 24, Concord voters were generous to their young scholars and athletes, approving school operating budgets for fiscal year 2008, capital improvements at Concord-Carlisle High School and two new athletic fields which the Town of Concord will build on CCHS land.
Five hours of debate
Concord Article 30, requesting $1,500,000 (from borrowing) to fund the playing fields, generated over five hours of spirited debate. The controversial project proposed to construct two artificial turf playing fields and associated parking next to CCHS in the corner of land between Route 2 and Walden Street. (See map in last week's issue, Mosquito April 20, page 6.) While the land belongs to the Regional School District (RSD), it is a Concord town project, to be funded by a combination of Concord general revenues, Community Preservation Act funds and private donations.
Early Tuesday evening, a motion to amend Article 30 failed to pass, with 347 voting in favor and 933 opposed. A vote was then taken on the main motion, and it failed to gain the required two-thirds majority, with 802 voting in favor and 459 opposed (843 votes required). After further debate, a motion to reconsider the earlier vote on the main motion passed with a simple majority. In the wee hours of the morning, a second vote was taken on the main motion. Whether due to fatigue or persuasion, the two-thirds majority was achieved (now fewer votes required), and the playing fields were approved.
There was little drama the preceding evening when the operating budget for CCHS and a debt exclusion A for $1,245,000 in capital improvements came up for a vote. Both motions passed on voice votes with little debate. Carlisle will vote on the CCHS improvements under Article 11 at Town Meeting next week.
© 2007 The