Never too young
The Tortora family takes in Town Meeting under an auxiliary tent. This Town Meeting was the fifth in a row held outdoors. Eleven-month-old Hobson came ready to his second Town Meeting with dad’s wallet in hand, as if to pay for the warrant items up front. From left: Brian, Hobson, Daniela, and Aliz Tortora. (Photo by Lisa Aciukewicz).
As the number of COVID-19 cases in the state continues to climb each week at a faster pace than the week before, town and school administration have not yet asked everyone to put their masks back on. Instead, in town buildings, recommended masking has morphed into “strongly recommended.”
Before Moderator Bill Barton took up the first article at Annual Town Meeting last Saturday, Stu Sklar, chair of the Select Board, said he wanted to start with a shout-out to the Harvard Fire Department.
With no contested races or controversial ballot measures this year, Tuesday’s Town Election was marked by the lowest turnout in at least a decade. Only 281 people—about 6% of Harvard’s registered voters—cast ballots, either in person or as absentees.
The turnout at this year's Town Meeting was the lowest this century, drawing 175 attendees—approximately 4% of registered voters—who made their way to a cloud-like circus tent on the Bromfield School’s Mass. Ave. field at noon to consider 56 measures put forward on this year’s warrant.
The site of an old Army barracks in an area of Devens known as Salerno Circle might help Harvard get out of the business of trying to provide contaminant-free water to its customers in the town’s water district.
The state reported 24 new COVID-19 cases in Harvard for the week ending May 7, 18 more than the previous week, bringing the town’s cumulative number of state-reported cases since the pandemic began to 635.
At Town Meeting Saturday, May 14, voters will be asked to approve 32 articles put forward by the Select Board and other town committees. The meeting is the first of two sessions, its agenda devoted primarily to financial matters. A second session will be convened in the fall.
Following two years of pandemic restraint, Harvard’s spending plan for fiscal 2023 seems built to make up for lost time. At Saturday’s Town Meeting, officials will ask attendees to approve significant boosts in spending.
Don Ludwig and Charles Oliver have served together on the Finance Committee for the past five years, and Ludwig has been on FinCom for 10 years all together. Both candidates say they see the Select Board as a continuation—a logical next step—in their volunteer service to the town.
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