Abington: Town meeting turns down new quorum requirement and community preservation act

Abington Town Meeting turned down the Community Preservation Act (CPA) and an article proposing a new quorum requirement Monday night.

Jack Buckley, the petitioner of the CPA article, said if it were adopted, Buckley  the average single family homeowner would have been taxed approximately $40 annually.

The majority of the Finance Committee and the Board of Selectmen agree that now is not the right time to give the residents with an additional tax burden.

“Timing is everything,” Andrew Burbine, Selectmen, said.

Kenneth Coyle, Selectmen Chair, didn’t think it was “appropriate” to place another tax burden on the taxpayers in town.

“We have a big, big bill coming up in the very near future with the schools, and that’s going to be a lot of tax money,” Coyle said.

Buckley  plans to bring this before the town again at a future Town Meeting. “We came close, but we’ll get it next time,” he said.

Voters also turned down the suggested 75-person quorum requirement. The required quorum as it exists is 150 registered voters.

“Ironically at tonight’s meeting, we had no problem getting a quorum,” Coyle said, “But there’s been many nights we’ve been here waiting and waiting and sometimes calling people saying ‘please come’.”

Even though the article failed this time, Coyle thinks it may come up in the future. ”We’ll be prepared if it does come up again,” he said.

There were 26 articles to be voted on for Annual Town Meeting and four for the Special Town Meeting.

Approved articles include the fiscal 2015 operating budget, a Medical Marijuana bylaw, and a $1.2 million purchase of a new aerial vehicle for the Fire Department.


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About Samantha Tracey

Samantha Tracey graduated from Salem State University in 2013 with a degree in Journalism. She has been reporting on local issues in a variety of towns: Bridgewater, Abington, Carver, Weymouth, East Bridgewater, Hanson, Halifax, etc. She says growing up on the South Shore has made it interesting now to be covering news in such familiar places.