Annual Town Meeting / Annual Town Election

The 2020 Annual Town Meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 16, 2020 at 6:00 PM at the Cohasset Music Circus. The Annual Town Election will be held Saturday, June 27, 2020.  

Below please find information about the Annual Town Warrant Articles. 



Annual Town Meeting & Election Information

Article 1:  Annual Town Report

Article 2: Reports of Committees - No Reports will be presented at this meeting 

Article 3: PEG Access and Cable Related Fund Acceptance - Acceptance of Chapter 44, Section 53F3/4 of the Massachusetts General Laws will allow the Town to account for and appropriate cable related funds in accordance with this new law.  The Town receives funding from Comcast and Verizon per cable agreements and is subsequently transferred to Cohasset 143TV to operate Cohasset’s local cable access operation.  In prior years municipalities would receive these funds into a special revenue fund and subsequently transfer them to their local cable access provider without appropriation.  The Department of Revenue (DOR) changed the way they wanted municipalities to account for these funds essentially for transparency purposes.  The DOR recommends the Town accepts this section of law to account for PEG Access and Cable Related Funds.

Article 5: Unpaid Bills from Previous Years - No Unpaid bills will be presented - This Article funds the payment of prior year bills.  The Town does not have any unpaid bills at this time and expects this article will be indefinitely postponed.

Article 6: Supplemental Appropriation for Fiscal 2020 - 

Action

Amount

From

To

Supplemental Appropriation:

Transfer PEG Access

Funds to Cohasset 143TV

$203,126.75

PEG Access and Cable Related Fund

Cohasset 143TV

Supplemental Appropriation:

Sewer Department

$170,000.00

Sewer Retained Earnings

Sewer Department

There are two supplemental appropriation requests for Fiscal 2020 as follows:

The first appropriation, in the amount of $203,126.75 relates to the acceptance of Chapter 44, Section 53F3/4 of the Massachusetts General Laws noted in Article 3.  Accepting Article 3 changed the way we account for and transfer funds received from Comcast and Verizon cable agreements to Cohasset 143TV.  Approval of this appropriation will allow the Town to transfer all the Fiscal Year 2020 cable related receipts received to Cohasset 143TV.  Going forward, there will be an article in every Annual and Special Town Meeting warrant requesting the transfer of cable funds received as of the date of each meeting.

The second appropriation is in the Sewer Operating Budget in the amount of $170,000 to cover the cost of multiple flow diversions to the Town of Hull as a result of the November public health emergency (membrane failure) and the delayed shipping/install of the membranes due to COVID 19.  Sewer retained earnings is the funding source for this article.

Article 7: Stabilization Appropriation for Fiscal 2020 - 

Amount

Source of Funds

Fund

$1,996,060

General Revenue

Capital Stabilization

$165,000

Free Cash

OPEB Trust Fund

$62,000

Sewer Revenue

Sewer Capital Stabilization

This Article requests funding for the Town’s various stabilization/special funds to comply with the Town’s financial policies.  Please refer to appendices in the Fiscal Year 2021 budget book for the Town’s financial policies.  The current balances, proposed contributions and projected balances in these funds are as follows:


Article 8: Capital Improvement Budget 

Article 9: Departmental Revolving Funds - Amendment - This Article adds three new revolving funds – one for the Library public use copy machine; one for road opening fees; and one for fines paid for violations of various tree ordinances.

Article 10: Departmental Revolving Funds - Annual Spending Limits - This annual housekeeping Article sets spending limits for various Town revolving funds.

Article 11: Allocation of Funds for One Time Cost - This Article allocates funding for a variety of projects, as described in the attached memo 

Article 12: Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 91 Liability - This is an annual Article which allows the Town to accept State assistance for work along the Town’s waterfront

Article 13: Additional Real Estate Exemptions - Annual Renewal - This is an annual Article renewing real estate tax exemptions for veterans and low income senior citizens

Article 14: Veteran's Tax Benefits and Exemptions 

Article 15: Former Prisoner's of War or Spouses Tax Exemption 

Article 17:  Implementation of the Cohasset Community Choice Electricity Aggregation Plan

Article 18: Change the Name of the Cohasset Board of Health to the Cohasset Board of Public Health - This Article, which was requested by the Board of Health, changes the name of the Board of Health to more clearly reflect its mission regarding Public Health – hence, the Board of Public Health

Article 19: Change the Name of the Cohasset Board of Selectmen to Cohasset Select Board - This Article changes the name of the Board of Selectmen to not only a more gender neutral name, but also to better reflect the Board’s role as a policy making and executive oversight body – as the Cohasset Select Board.  As reported back in January, more than 90 communities across the Commonwealth have made the name change https://scituate.wickedlocal.com/news/20200124/goodbye-selectmen-hello-select-boards-towns-making-executive-boards-gender-neutral

Article 20: Rescission of Unused Borrowing Authorization - This Article rescinds unused borrowing authorized for projects that have been completed under budget.  

Article 21:  Acquisition of Easement at 2 Smith Place for Culvert to Transmit Waters of James Brook

Article 22: Zoning Bylaw Amendment for Flood plain and Watershed Protection District - Pursuant to FEMA this Article will be taken up at a future meeting

Article 23: Transfer 808 Jerusalem Road to the Affordable Housing Trust

Article 25: Lease of Town Property for Siting of Solar Power Electric Generation Facility 

Article 26: Lease of School Property for Siting of a Solar Power Electric Generation Facility 

Article 27: Citizen's Petition-Release of Easement - The substance of this article will be addressed in Article 21