Dear League members,
I’m sure we’re all glad that election season is over (for now)! It was a busy, confusing, anxious, nerve-wracking time. After a well-deserved break, we can look forward to a number of events for League members and the community at large, focused on issues such as ranked choice voting.
Usually state election years are quieter years for LWVN—but not this year. We started early in the summer, planning candidates’ forums in time for the primary elections. In partnership with NewTV and a number of other local Leagues, we held a forum with Rep. Joe Kennedy and opponent Gary Rucinksi. We planned a forum for Governor’s Council but that fell through at the last minute.
At this point, LWVN began to focus on the three state ballot questions. Both the September and October episodes of LWVN’s program on NewTV, “The League Presents…” were dedicated to discussions of the ballot questions. We hosted LWVN member and ACLU of Massachusetts Board Member Holly Gunner in our review of Questions 2 and 3, on a constitutional amendment about money in politics and about transgender rights, respectively. We also hosted representatives from the ‘yes’ and the ‘no’ sides of Question 1, the patient-to-nurse ratio question.
Our first Topic Meeting of the year in October also hosted representatives from both sides of Question 1, as well as both sides of the marijuana questions on the Newton special ballot. The notes were available on our website for those who couldn’t attend. Thanks to Frieda Dweck for organizing and moderating this event.
Lasell Village asked LWVN to help their residents learn more about the ballot questions. Thanks to two LWVN Board members, Alicia Bowman and Alice Donisi-Feehan, who volunteered to lead this meeting.
In addition to these activities, our voter registration crew was extremely busy registering hundreds of new voters in the summer and fall. Led by Sharyn Roberts, the group was visible at Farmer’s Markets, July 4th, Village Days, the Harvest Fair, as well as at both high schools. Thanks to all who participated over the course of the season.
As all this was happening, LWVN’s CPA (Community Preservation Committee) evaluated two proposals this fall: one to fund an appraisal and legal counsel regarding Webster Woods and another to fund a sizable expansion of senior affordable housing at the Golda Meir House. Many thanks to CPA committee members for evaluating the proposals.
So what are our upcoming plans?
- We will soon be delving into the mechanics of the state’s process on ballot questions. This is part of LWVMA’s consensus study—look for more information about an educational meeting in November, followed by an official consensus meeting in December.
- Also in December, LWVN is planning a holiday party this year! We will meet at the Durant-Kenrick House on Sunday, December 9th—more details to come.
- We are also planning a forum on ranked-choice voting, the procedure used in Maine’s state elections, in March at the Newton Free Library.
- LWVN is also hard at work on a civics bee—details are still being worked out, so look for more information and calls for volunteers as we head toward the spring.
- LWVN also has a new committee just starting to work on scholarships for high school students. Again, more details will be forthcoming as they get organized.
And of course, in the spring municipal elections will begin to grab our attention. We will hold our ‘Don’t Just Stand There…Run’ event for those interested in running for office or helping others run for office.
As always, if any of these activities interest you, please contact us at email@example.com, We will continue to keep you updated on our activities and other events of interest with our weekly emails.