Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Town Meeting Time

It's Town Meeting season around New Hampshire, and tonight it takes place in our town, good old Farmington. We even get out early at the library so the staff can vote. People gather at the Old Town Hall (as opposed to the New Municipal Building) and prepare to spend many hours griping about budgets, supporting or opposing things like buying a new fire engine and then voting on whether to sell the old one and trying to figure out the vote yes to say no meanings of the text of the town report warrant articles.
If you've ever watched "The Gilmore Girls" and seen the Stars Hollow Town Meeting, that gives you a pretty clear idea of the proceedings if you also add the part where we get to vote by holding up little squares of colored paper and the moderator and assistants doing a count.

John is great to sit with as he has to cover the events for the paper and understands all the lingo, so, after years of asking him..."What does this mean", I have a better knowledge of what the hell's going on. Basically, if the budget committee and the selectmen approve of something it's a safe bet to vote for that particular article. We usually sit on the side, and get a good view of everything. One thing, since Town Meeting has been televised, less people show up in person, so, if you do, you end up with a lot of clout. Also, you get to be on TV, so, there can be grandstanding. Meetings can sometimes go till 1 in the morning or later with a lot of nit-picky squabbling. But this IS democracy in action. You can see why getting anything done in Washington must take forever!

No comments:

Post a Comment