CHINA — Voters will be presented with three town ordinance proposals on the municipal ballot in the Nov. 3 election.

The ordinances cover tobacco-free/litter-free town properties, a quorum requirement for Town Meeting and membership and duties of the Recreation Committee. Those questions each ask voters to repeal earlier versions of the regulations and replace them with updated documents.

Under the existing quorum ordinance, at least 4 percent of registered voters must be present at town meeting to select a moderator and begin the meeting. There are 2,877 voters in town, meaning the 4 percent standard is about 116 voters attending the meeting.

In the proposed ordinance, a quorum would not be required to choose a moderator, but still would be needed to vote on any town business, except to adjourn or continue the meeting at a different time.

That means that if no quorum turns up for the meeting, it can be adjourned to another time without having to go through the legal process of posting the meeting for seven days, Town Manager Dan L’Heureux said. The ordinance also has been shortened to take out unnecessary language, he said.

A tobacco-free/litter-free ordinance on the ballot would replace the town’s current ordinance, which prohibits tobacco and litter only at the town’s outdoor recreational facilities, parks and trails. The proposed ordinance would extend that ban to all town-owned outdoor areas, including the Town Office complex, parks and trails. Smoking indoors is already illegal under the 1985 Workplace Smoking Act.

Finally, the third ordinance proposal would enlarge the Recreation Committee and recognize the duties it actually performs.

When the five-member committee was formed in 1974 by a town vote, its purpose was to oversee the use of snowmobile registration funds, L’Heureux said. Over the years, the committee’s role has grown to manage an annual budget and various sports and recreational programs. At the same time, residents now disburse snowmobile taxes at Town Meeting in March.

The new ordinance would expand the committee to seven members and make it responsible for preparing and submitting an annual budget; reviewing and recommending recreational activities, repairs and maintenance and future projects; and coordinating field usage.

“This really updates the ordinance to reflect what the Recreation Committee actually does,” L’Heureux said.

Peter McGuire — 861-9239

[email protected]

Twitter: @PeteL_McGuire


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