Mary McCoy and Michael Simonds

Will Windham lose far more than it gains with Australian-ballot Town Meetings?

Town Meeting is more than checking a box on a ballot. It’s discussion and compromise on the floor, input from nonvoting guests, and a delicious potluck lunch.

On Wednesday, Dec. 18, the Town of Windham will hold a Special Town Meeting at 6 p.m. to decide whether to replace our traditional town meeting with the Australian ballot.

This change would allow residents who cannot attend town meeting to vote on town officials, budgets, and other proposed matters.

We believe, however, that the town's people would give up far more than they would gain from this change.

With the Australian ballot, the Selectboard or other small groups would determine what would be proposed and ballots would be printed accordingly. An informational meeting would explain whatever is on the ballots, followed on another day by votes being cast, yea or nay.

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