(Scroll down below to see the tweets)
The room breaks out in laughter as townspeople turn toward each other–repeating the word “tweeting’–after my announcement that I’ve been live posting today’s Town Meeting for VPR.
The only other time the gathering laughs as hard is when the Town Energy Committee announces that they have received a $750 grant for an audit of our 200-year old Town Hall (where today’s meeting takes place.)
Though a 20 foot snow pile stands beside the building, the weather today is so atypically mild that most attendees can remove their hats and gloves (and some even coats) in the beloved–but drafty–Town House.
Marlboro’s first town meeting took place in 1775 after being settled a decade earlier. The town once called “New Marlborough” had a population of 1300 in the year 1820. The census for 2000 recorded 978 citizens in present-day Marlboro. (Info. from the Marlboro Historical Society.)
To follow the highlights of the Marlboro’s 2010 Town Meeting, take a look at the stream of tweets (140 characters or less) that were posted live during yesterday’s annual gathering:
Tweeting Town Meeting
Up at 6 2 make it back 2 VT in time for Town Mtg~ still missed my fav. part~the opening
Marlboro Town Mtg. now discussing School Bd’s request 2 reduce their own stipend from $1,000 to $100
After much discussion “against” reducing Marlboro School Board stipend, amendment passes 2 support their request
Only in VT~Marlboro Town Mtg. Moderator steps down 4 moment 2 answer question in his other role as District Superintendent
Almost FULL House here in Marlboro (Town House that is) approx. 120 ppl
School Superintendent turns back 2 Town Mtg Moderator & Marlboro school budget passes with ease
Marlboro Town Mtg has apparently shifted 2 comically editing the Town Report after brief adjournment
Forced Hand count 2 suspend rules 2 move “closing discussions” B4 Lunch while attendance high
Standing Applause~Bob Anderson speaks on behalf of Marlboro Conservation Commission who raised MILLION 7+ 2 preserve Hogback MT!
It’s VT Town Meetings where I learned what it means 2 participate: http://wp.me/pja7h-w6
Long-time Marlboro resident Dan MacArthur proposes shifting vote for Town Officers 2 Town Mtg rather than ballot
Constable Clarence Boston supports vote 4 Officers at Town Mtg when VT makes 2day PAID HOLIDAY!
Road Foreman Dave Elliot counters that Meeting Hall wouldn’t accommodate all voters if Officers were 2B elected at Town Mtg
Marlboro’s Town Meeting suspended 2 welcome State Rep. Marek~with applause
Always lots of knitters at Marlboro’s Town Meeting; mine is the only lap with a computer
This live coverage made possible by wi fi at Town Hall; no high speed access yet at my Marlboro home
Marlboro res. Alan Dann whose wife is Dr. addresses Rep. Marek~ wants VT 2 serve as model 4 rest of nation around HEALTH CARE!
Almost skipped Town Mtg this yr 2 prolong family vaca; VPR inspired me 2 B here once again; had 2 wake kids at 6:00 am
14 yr old son attends Town Mtg. every yr since infant; learning what it means 2 live in community
Marlboro Town Meeting about to adjourn for annual community POTLUCK LUNCH (my boys live 4 the homemade desserts!)
Biz Owner Jane Wilde apologizes for cell phone ringing during Town Meeting~ a first for Marlboro
A Town Mtg Potluck 4 all ages~grandchildren, elders & everything in between
Whetstone Inn owner Jean Boardman’s “Chocolate Creme de Cacoa cake” is dessert of choice at Marlboro’s Potluck–every yr!
Motion 2 keep Selectboard comp. at current rate rather than reduce it–2 avoid lengthy Marlboro discussion against reducing 🙂
Applause~Resident Keely Eastly acknowledges Marlboro Selectboard 4 maintaining balanced budget–never a deficit
(1: 25 pm)
Applause~Selectperson Gail MacArthur recognizes Town Foreman, Dave Elliott & Crew for great care of Marlboro roads
Marlboro Road Foreman Dave Elliott reports: loss use of 2 trucks in last storm; circles still under his eyes; budget passes
With mudseason approaching, Marlboro Rd. Foreman offers 3 Rules of Good Roads: “Drainage, drainage, drainage (& carpool.)”
In 1822,Marlboro inhabitants vote 2build Town House/hosting 2day’s mtg http://www.marlboro.vt.us/groups/historical_society
Protocol questioned following death of Fireman Jack Horton at accident scene;choked response:”We watch each others back more.”
Editor/Creator Jess Weitz applauded for community newletter~The Marlboro Mixer~ an excellent town resource
Marlboro Town Meeting votes en masse on Articles #9-15~funding town & county programs
Mathematics professor/author, Joe Mazur, of Marlboro, speaks on behalf of Mayors for Peace~2 end use of nuclear weapons
Legacy~first legal Town Meeting in Marlboro held in 1775 http://www.marlboro.vt.us/groups/historical_society
Marlboro Town Meeting still more than half-full following lunch adjournment
Marlboro’s first settlers came in the spring of 1763 http://www.marlboro.vt.us/groups/historical_society
Many townspeople speak to the power of small groups of citizens in favor of movements like Mayors for Peace
“Never doubt a small grp of thoughtful, committed citizens can change world. Indeed, it’s only thing that ever has.” M. Mead
Moderator shares:wife’s aunt in Hiroshima on day bombed. http://kellysalasin.wordpress.com/2009/12/07/an-apology/
Marlboro Town Energy Committee offers its services 2 homes 2 reduce energy use
Marlboro citizens encouraged 2 serve on town committees & also help put away chairs 2day, adding,”There are leftover desserts!“
More laughter & applause than angst today at Marlboro’s Town Meeting
Laughter follows my announcement that I’ve been live “tweeting”Marlboro’s meeting as most have little idea what “tweeting” is
Signing off~Thanks again VPR for keeping the spirit of Vermont–and Town Meeting– ALIVE. It was a pleasure.
Kelly Salasin, March 2, 2010, Marlboro Town Meeting, Vermont