NEW VINEYARD — Voters will consider ordinances for recall elections and a code of conduct for town employees Saturday at the annual Town Meeting.

Selectmen also are asking voters to approve a $568,101 budget, up 13.7 percent from the current year’s, Town Clerk Arlene Davis said.

Selectmen recommend that $50,000 be appropriated from surplus to reduce the tax burden, she said.

The property tax rate is $11.80 per $1,000 of assessed value.

The town has proposed an ordinance about recalling elected municipal officials, with the exception of school board members.

The recall procedure would require signatures from registered voters totaling at least 10 percent of the number of New Vineyard votes cast in the last gubernatorial election. The signed statement must state the reason for wanting to remove the official. The proposal says an elected official can be recalled for failure to carry out the duties of the office, engaging in conduct that compromises the town’s reputation or being indicted or convicted of a felony or entering a guilty plea to a felony.

The code of conduct is intended to set a formal procedure for selectmen and how they are supposed to act in relation to each other and in relation to the public.

The proposed code says selectmen should work to create town policy that is fair and impartial and meets the objective of furthering New Vineyard’s quality of life. 

Other code provisions include promising not to benefit financially from board activities, not to misuse public time and to handle all personnel matters in a private manner. It also includes formally agreeing not to withhold public information requested by citizens and for board members to refrain from publicly criticizing a citizen or other town employee.

Other articles include a vote on whether to require background checks on all prospective full-time, part-time or contract municipal employees and future employees and a vote on whether the town will keep property it acquired through nonpayment of taxes.

The town also will elect officials from the floor of the meeting: members of the Board of Selectmen, a road commissioner and three Planning Board members.

The meeting is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. in Smith Hall.

Kaitlin Schroeder— 861-9252
[email protected]


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