Charter Revision Question #2 on the Ballot


Attached you will find the text of the proposed new Town Charter. The Town Charter is much like the constitution, only for how to run Wolcott’s local government. You may notice that the Board of Eduation is absent from this document, because the rules governing the Board of Education are made by state statute.

If passed, this Charter will replace the current Charter. If rejected, a Charter Revision Commission will likely reconvene to propose new changes, if the Town Council chooses to do so.

While some changes to the Charter were NOT considered, such as the ability to vote for all 9 candidates a voter would like to serve on the 9 member Town Council or Board of Education respectively, some changes were made:

1. If a petitioning candidate won an office and then later vacates their seat to that office, then the next- highest vote getter eligible will replace them.

Currently there are four members of the Town Council who ran as “Row C” candidates, where they had to collect signatures to be on the ballot. Some of these members are registered with a political party but were not endorsed by that party. This section certainly is a needed improvement.

2. In the last two municipal elections, there were recounts involving the Town Council. The previous charter stated that members of the new council had to be seated the day after the election. The new date is now pushed back one week.

While an improvement, the Charter Committee should have pushed this back two weeks instead of one because state law requires that a recount occur within 14 days of an election. Since it could take taht long to hold a recount, they should wait that long to seat the Council. In fact, most towns seat their legislative body weeks and sometimes a month or two after the election.

3. A section limits police chiefs to having contracts of no longer than three years. They can be renewed, however.

This is in response to Chief Scirpo who received a lifelong contract from Mayor Denegris and the Town Council at the time.

4. Changes the names of certain commissions:
Development and Industrial is now the Economic Development Commission, and the Commission for the Handicapped is now the Commission for Individuals with Special Needs.
combines the Park and Recreation and Acquied facilities Commission into one entity;

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CHARTER REVISIONS-PROPOSED-AS OF-7-6-10[1]

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