Gratitude For MBTS Special Town Meeting Success


To the Editor,

I write to thank the voters who attended town meeting on Saturday afternoon.  More than 200 residents chose to come in from a beautiful autumn day to conduct the Town’s essential business.  With seating arranged to provide social distancing in both the gym and auditorium, voters and visitors considerately followed the public health protocol I developed.  Their discussion of the warrant articles was thorough and deliberate. 

The efforts of many residents and town and school employees made the logistics work.  Dr. Martin Hahn of the Board of Health helped me write the protocol to ensure the safety of participants.  Town Clerk Dianne Bucco managed preparation and logistics for the meeting with her usual efficiency and good humor.  It’s a pleasure to work with her.  Jason Waldron and Andy McGilvary of the Middle/High School staff were generous with their time.  Shawn Johnson and his DPW crew set up the rooms on Friday afternoon and was on call Saturday.  Assistant Moderator Arthur Steinert presided in the auditorium and seamlessly coordinated with me in the gymnasium.  Other volunteers at the meeting itself included Registrar of Voters Eileen Buckley, Kathy Ryan, Muffin Driscoll, Ellen Flatley, Michelle Ann Bayer, Pamela Thorne, Lee Simonds, Carolyn Kelly, Beth Heisey, Kurt Melden, Judy Laspesa, Martha Farmer, Tom Kehoe, Susan Mirak, Karen Sarge and Bion Pike.  I thank them all.

Weeks of preparation and effort by employees and boards precede every town meeting.  For this meeting – the first we’ve held indoors since the start of the pandemic – I encouraged everyone to include on the warrant only those subjects that were time sensitive and essential.  Keeping the meeting as short as possible reduced the risk of infection for everyone.  I am grateful for the cooperation I received, especially from the Board of Selectmen and the Planning Board, as well as that of Citizens for Manchester Affordable Housing in deciding to pass over their articles.

Last but by no means least, my thanks go to Town Administrator Greg Federspiel.  Greg oversees the town’s business with dedication, intelligence and good humor.  His help to me in preparing for every town meeting is invaluable.  He and the staff he leads have faced many challenges in the last two years and have overcome them.  They all merit our gratitude and respect.

Sincerely yours,

Alan Wilson

Town Moderator         

dianne bucco, jason waldron, andy mcgilvary, arthur steinert, dr. martin hahn, manchester board of health, alan wilson