Budget, state seal on table at Rowe’s Town Meeting Monday

  • Rowe’s special and annual town meeting begins tonight, May 13 at 6:30 p.m. at the elementary school.  FILE PHOTO

Staff Writer
Published: 5/13/2019 6:31:27 AM

ROWE — Budgets and the state seal are key issues on the warrant at tonight’s Annual Town Meeting, 7 p.m. at Rowe Elementary School. 

Voters will mainly be asked to allow the town to spend their taxes on public expenses including salaries, facilities and safety, health and sanitation, schools, culture and recreation. 

The town will also vote to reaffirm the fire department’s responsibilities and amend municipal laws so the Annual Town Report is not delivered but rather made available to residents.

Town expenses

The warrant contains a list of municipal expenses requiring a simple majority of support to pass. The biggest-ticket item on the warrant is for public schools, costing the town $1.73 million. 

Other town expenses include: 

■Pensions and Insurance: $821, 922

■Public works and facilities: $615,432

■General government: $437,313

■Public safety: $147,015

■Public health and sanitation: $140,241

■Town library: $70,365

■Parks: $114,454

■Culture and recreation: $5,000

■Broadband: $12,167

■Town projects funded by savings: $99,246

Special Town Meeting

Five budget items are up for a vote at the Special Town Meeting, starting a half-hour before the Annual Meeting at 6:30 p.m. tonight, also at the elementary school. All items concern moving left-over town funds or “free cash” to pay for various municipal expenses. 

■$25,000 for the Board of Assessors’ Consulting/Legal Support

■$7,306 for the Fire/Rescue Lighting, Radio Installation and Emergency Striping 

■$6,500 to remove an oil tank at Town Hall

■$7,000 to prepare for Emergency Action Plan services 

■$5,300 to pay for radio equipment and hose testing for the Fire Department

Citizens petitions

One citizens petition has been submitted to the warrant and will be subject to a vote. The article asks townspeople to support a recently filed state bill that would create a special commission concerning the seal and motto of Massachusetts.

The state seal depicts a Native American person and is accompanied by the motto: “By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty.” 

The resolution says it seeks to change the state seal and motto because Native Americans “have long suffered the many abuses of racism, the appropriation of their symbols for public schools and sports teams, the diminution and pollution of their ancestral lands and the encroachment of their cultural lifeways.”  

Reach Grace Bird at gbird@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 280.

Greenfield Recorder

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Greenfield, MA 01302-1367
Phone: (413) 772-0261
Fax: (413) 772-2906


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