Town Meeting members began to discuss a proposed ban on gas-powered leaf blowers Wednesday.
They also passed Minuteman High School’s budget and a town bylaw amendment that requires residents to bring in their uncollected trash by 9 p.m. the next day.
In addition, members decided not to reconsider an earlier vote of no action on Article 32, which would have been a report and recommendation from the town manager on the implementation of a consolidated town-school finance department.
Town Meeting member Carol Band submitted a substitute motion for Article 25 after the Board of Selectmen’s recommended vote of no action on her original article.
Band’s motion would amend the town bylaws to prohibit the use of gas-powered leaf blowers on private property in Arlington.
In her presentation to Town Meeting, Band, of Precinct 8, said gas-powered leaf blowers create noise pollution, are a health risk and are bad for the environment. Member Jeremy Marin, of Precinct 16, also gave a lengthy presentation in favor of the motion. He focused on the health hazards associated with the blowers.
Members who spoke against the motion basically said that it is too extreme.
A similar motion was defeated at Town Meeting a couple of years ago. After about 40 minutes of debate on the motion Wednesday, Town Meeting adjourned until 8 p.m. Monday, May 14. Debate will continue then before a vote is taken.
Minuteman High School’s Budget OK’d
After a longer debate on the faults of the regional technical high school’s governance and funding structures, Town Meeting members returned to the question at hand, Article 45, and passed the town’s roughly $3 million portion of Minuteman’s operating budget.
The vote was actually quite irrelevant, as more than 11 of the school’s 16 member towns had already passed the budget, making it a done deal.
Members supported a recommended vote of no action on Article 46, which asked to establish a Minuteman stabilization fund for capital repairs, renovations and improvements. However, once again, enough member towns had already approved the article, so Arlington’s vote was more of a statement than an action.
Twenty-Five Articles To Go
With six sessions (18 hours) of Town Meeting now in the books, members have addressed 47 of the 72 articles on the Town Meeting Warrant and all 10 articles on the Special Town Meeting Warrant, leaving 25 to go when they reconvene Monday.