The warrant for the Annual Town Meeting and Election is posted, link at bottom of page.
The Westhampton Annual Town Meeting is outdoors at the Westhampton Elementary School 10:00 a.m., June 27 with a rain date of 6:00 p.m., June 29. There will be two check in points, one near the rear from the main parking area and one for the Hathaway Road parking area. Check in will begin at 9:00 a.m. Distancing of six feet while in line to sign in is required; markers will be in place to stand on. Masks are required; the Board of Health will have masks available for anyone that needs one. Volunteers will assist with seating designations. Distancing while seating is required, however, members of the same household may sit together. Separate seating sections will be available for: seniors and persons with a disability; folding chairs set up to allow distance of six feet; for those who bring their own chairs; and a section for those not wearing a mask. Individuals are encouraged to bring their own chairs. Anyone seeking special accommodations, or seniors and persons with a disability that would like to request to reserve a seat may do so no later than 10:00 a.m. June 26 by email to [email protected] or call 413-203-3086; we are looking into setting up cover by means of pop-up canopies or a tent for this section. Households sitting together may bring a small pop-up canopy in the designated section. Others are encouraged to plan ahead and wear sun protective clothing and/or sunblock or any weather appropriate protection such as an umbrella and hat. Arial views of the layout of the seating and check-in are provided below as attachments, or available by request to [email protected]. A sound crew will provide microphones and sound for speakers. An accessible portable toilet and 1 bathroom in the school will be available. Individuals using either are asked to thoroughly wash or sanitize their hands after use. No refreshments will be available at the meeting; individuals will be allowed to bring their own and are asked to carry out their own trash. The warrant is posted on the Selectboard page of this website with a link below, at the Town Hall, Library, Outlook Farm, and Agenda book; copies will be available at the meeting.
Everyone’s safety was our greatest concern in planning annual meeting in collaboration with the Board of Health, Highway, Police, and Fire Departments, and the Finance Committee. Safety remains our focus as we finalize plans and we are confident we can conduct our town meeting in a manner that engages residents to make important decisions of the operations of Westhampton.
Articles 1 - 10, 13, 21-26 are annual business and financial items.
Article 11 seeks authorization to fund to pave the parking lot of the Westhampton Elementary School located off Hathaway Road. There has been an increase in use of this dirt/gravel parking area which is maintained by the highway department. During winters and mud season it becomes a challenge to keep the area safe for parking and walking. Paving the area will reduce the time and resources spent on maintenance. At the time of this notice other potential funding sources are being investigated. At the time of town meeting it will be known if appropriation by vote of town meeting authorization are needed for this project.
Article 12 seeks authorization to fund a town audit. Audits of fiscal years 2018 & 2019 are completed. The request is for an audit of fiscal year 2020.
Article 14 seeks authorization to fund purchase of a new generator for the highway dept. garage. A generator serves as backup power during power outages. This allows the garage heat and lights to function so the department can continue service safely and effectively. The garage also serves as a secondary emergency warming station. The current generator is failing.
Article 15 seeks authorization to borrow funds for a new pickup truck for the highway department. A 2/3 vote is required to authorize borrowing. An authorization will be contingent upon a passage of a debt exclusion ballot question on July 25. This will replace the 1999 F350 which was scheduled to be replaced last year.
Article 16 seeks authorization to fund ambulance services. The Westhampton Ambulance is no longer in service. Westhampton signed an agreement with the City of Easthampton for ambulance services in the amount of $25,000 contingent on town appropriation. Funds are available in the Ambulance Reserved Reciepts fund to offset a portion of the charges. The remaining balance will require authorization from another source, such as raise and appropriate.
Article 17 seeks authorization to establish and fund for building commissioner services. A search for a new commission is under way to fill the position. The Selectboard is considering all options, including a program provided by a regional service or by shared services with other municipalities. The current budget has a line item for the salary of a commissioner/inspector. If the position becomes a contract service a new account will be established. The funds from the salary line will be appropriated to the contract services line; so one or the other will be funded, not both. At the time of posting the Selectboard is seeking to offer a temporary position while a search for a permanent commissioner is conducted. The motion made at town meeting will be determined by the outcome of the offer.
Article 18 seeks authorization to establish and fund a salary account for Assistant Town Clerk. The article and budget line item was proposed by the Selectboard. The Finance Committee made recommendation to not fund the position. The Selectboard is considering town meeting action and will deliberate further with Finance Committee in preparation of town meeting.
Article 19 seeks authorization to establish and fund an account for a consultant/planner. A consultant/planner would assist local public bodies with special permit and hearing procedures on an as-needed basis. The article was proposed by the Selectboard. The Finance Committee made recommendation to fund the position.
Article 20 seeks authorization to fund replacement of the town hall and annex slate roofs. The Town Property & Energy Committee made recommendations to the Selectboard to replace the roofs and refinish the floor of the town hall. The Selectboard authorized the committee to seek estimates. With that information the Selectboard proposed this article. The Finance Committee made recommendation to fund the project. A Request For Bids is published and will be accepted until 7:00 p.m. July 6 when they will be opened and reviewed. Award will be contingent on appropriation. The Selectboard did not agree with refinishing the floor until after the roof is replaced, therefor, they did not propose to seek authorization for funding that project at this time.
Article 27 seeks authorization to adopt a RESOLUTION ENDORSING THE PROTECTION OF POLLINATORS AND ENHANCEMENT OF POLLINATOR HABITAT; submitted by petition by a qualified number of registered voters. Full text on warrant.
Go to Clerk's Page for Election Information