By Beth David, Editor
Town Meeting voted on 6/12/21 to increase the number of Select Board members to five, from three. But that was not the end of it. The change needs to be approved by the legislature.
Mass. State Representative William Straus, who represents Fairhaven, introduced House No. 3948 on 6/22.
The bill calls for three members to be elected the first year. The highest vote-getter will serve three years, the second highest will serve two years, and the third will serve one year. After that, each will serve three years.
“This act shall take effect upon its passage,” reads the bill.
Rep. Straus’s office said in an email that the bill was referred to the Municipalities and Regional Government Committee on July 14 and concurred by the Senate on July 15. The bill is currently pending a committee hearing. After a public hearing date is set, the office said it will have a better idea of the timeline.
Nomination papers in Fairhaven are generally available by December 1 for the following April’s election. It is unclear how much time the town needs to be able to include the changes for the next election.
Acting town clerk Linda Fredette said in an email that she was not sure of the answer. She said she sent a message to the Secretary of State, but did not hear back by press time.
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