Civics Sunday: Annual Town Meeting Information
Publishers’ Note: The following information is also available on the Town of Holliston website. There are several safety protocols in place for those who plan to attend the Annual Town Meeting. HCAT will be broadcasting the entire meeting for those who choose to watch from home.
“Town Meeting Logistics & Safety Highlights
Holliston’s Annual Town Meeting will be held this year at 7:30 pm on Monday, July 20, 2020 at the Placentino/Miller Elementary School Cafetorium, located at 235 Woodland Street.
Due to ongoing COVID‐19 concerns, we have implemented additional practices to ensure that this will be a safe event.
Everyone attending Annual Town Meeting must wear CDC approved face coverings while inside and while entering and exiting the venue, in accordance with Governor Baker’s May 1 COVID‐19 Order No. 31. Individuals refusing to wear an approved face covering may be denied entry or asked to leave.
Anyone who is feeling sick, or is exhibiting any of the following symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, or new loss of taste or smell), or have potentially been exposed to someone with confirmed or suspected COVID‐19 should not attend Town Meeting.
Entrance to the venue will be through the Placentino lobby, down the hallway to the right, where officials will check‐in residents and confirm voting status outside the entrances to the gym and cafetorium. Directional arrows and signs will indicate where to walk and stand when waiting to be checked in or enter the seating area. Please be patient!
240 chairs will be set up (125 in the cafetorium, and 115 in the gymnasium). The gymnasium will only be used for overflow once the seating in the cafetorium is at capacity.
The chairs will be set up to allow both for family members who arrive together to sit together, and for those who attend individually to sit separately, while maintaining proper physical distancing. Do not move chairs, as that will impact required distancing from other individuals.
If a resident in the cafetorium wishes to be heard on an article under consideration, they should stand and wait to be recognized by the Moderator, at which time a volunteer will approach with a boom microphone into which they may speak. If a resident in the gymnasium wishes to be heard on an article under consideration, that can be communicated to the Moderator by the room monitor. Once recognized by the Moderator, they can approach the microphone just inside the cafetorium from the hallway, into which they may speak. Please do not touch or adjust the microphones.
When the meeting is adjourned, attendees will follow directional arrows and signs to exit the building while observing physical distancing. Attendees from both seating areas will be dismissed by row to ensure safe exiting.
Residents will have access to bathrooms for handwashing facilities, including soap and running water.
Alcohol‐based hand sanitizers will be available at check‐in. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own hand sanitizer as well.
Due to the forecast, attempts will be made to cool the seating areas using portable air conditioning units. Room temperatures can vary; attendees are encouraged to bring a sweater or jacket to stay comfortable in case their seat is near the AC ductwork or diffuser. Those who are sensitive to temperature extremes may opt to stay home.
To participate in discussions or votes at Town Meeting, a registered voter must be present at the venue and have checked in. To maintain the integrity of the voting process, it is not possible to go back and forth from the parking lot while waiting for a specific article to be considered. Attendees will not be able to congregate in the lobby or hallway; physical distancing should be maintained.
To speed up the meeting and create time for more critical issues and previously undiscussed matters, the Moderator has worked to group routine business articles and reports into one agenda item, which is known as a consent agenda. The consent agenda can subsequently be approved by attendees in one action, rather than motions on each separate article. Before the consent agenda is acted upon, residents will first have an opportunity to remove individual articles on which they wish to have discussion from the consent agenda.”
The Annual Town Meeting Warrant and Finance Committee Report are available by clicking here -> 2020 Holliston Annual Town Meeting Warrant and related information