Simsbury Town Charter Revision Approved for November Ballot

Democratic board members urge residents to review the revised charter before casting their votes.

The Simsbury Board of Selectmen voted unanimously Monday to include the revised town charter on the November ballot despite concerns over some of the proposed amendments.

After the board requested reconsideration of several proposed changes to the charter in May, the commission decided not to take action on the board's requests because it felt the board did not offer any concrete recommendations.

The revisions at the center of the debate were: changes to the election terms of the town's Design Review Board; new authority given to the Board of Finance over the town's pension accounts; and the exclusion of public audience sessions at Board of Finance meetings.

"It's a tough decision when we don't agree with something that the Charter [Revision Commission] has worked hard on," First Selectman Mary Glassman said. "It was an independent commission. I think this board made it very clear we didn't agree with some provisions."

Selectman Lisa Heavner and Deputy First Selectman John Hampton, both Democrats, joined Republican board members to approve the charter in its entirety.

During the public audience portion of Monday night's meeting, Simsbury resident Dr. Michael Rinaldi said both Heavner and Hampton failed to properly serve their constituents by approving the revisions.

Heavner made motions to reject three of the proposed revisions during a meeting in June but ultimately voted to approve the revised charter in its entirety with the hope that voters will reject it in November.

"I think that John and Lisa really made a tough decision because they don't agree with all of the provisions," Glassman said. "Just because two of us or three of us don't agree with all of the provisions should we give the right to vote — take the right to vote away from the people of Simsbury, and that's the question," Glassman said.

The charter revisions will appear on the ballot on November 6. The full revised town charter can be found on the town website on the Charter Revision Commission page.

Thomas E. Brown July 10, 2012 at 11:16 AM
All municipal boards need to have public audience. The last time I checked, it was government by the people, for the people. Our vote is the ultimate check and balance, however our direct and vocal input also needs to have a place if we are still to have a government that represents us. The town charter shouldn't be used as a tool to gag our first amendment rights. Vote no on the charter revision!
Marcie July 10, 2012 at 02:38 PM
This is concerning..."and the exclusion of public audience sessions at Board of Finance meetings." So what would be the purpose of excluding the public?
Robert Kalechman July 10, 2012 at 05:13 PM
I attend the Meeting of the Board Of Selectman on Monday 9 July 2012 all did not go well Doctor Michael J. Rinaidi of Simsbury presented the Board with his petitions on the Town Charter and pointed out that selectman Lisa Heavner and John Hampton were negligent in their duties as Selectman in voting to send the Charter for a vote upon which the First Selectman cut him off and when Doctor Rinaidi ask if he could answer her question she refuse to answer the good Doctor and Doctor Rinaidi left the meeting maybe he did not want to be arrested by her or her staff Why Ms Glassman want this charter could it be that she just want the pay and do little work and more political dealing .by taking out the Constables from the charter she add to her career of nepotism and looking the other way on the poor peoples and at housing at Eno Farms what will be the next scandel in the district of the Fifth Congressional and Simsbury the Dail A Ride for the Veterans and senior citizen is now cut out to Veterans Hospital in Newington and only one trip a month for seniors to the Doctors Offices in my opinion this was cut by Mary Glassman First Selectman of Simsbury and Selectman John Hampton as they cut the Budget and hours of the Simsbury Library last year remember that one and then she gave Mr Steve Mitchell and his Bicycle Group $27,000 dollars from the general fund and the town paid consultants a million dollars in Study's by out of state company . Ms Heavner misleads the town citizens


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